Thursday, June 21, 2007

Sweet Tea

Here in the South, there is no such thing as regular tea. There is sweet tea, which is pre-sweetened with sugar. There is unsweet tea, which is not pre-sweetened. There is fruit tea, which is made differently in all restaurants, but usually consists of orange juice and sweet tea along with other fruit juices. Then there is hot tea of course.

Being from the North, I would assume that when someone orders "regular tea" (or just tea) they would mean hot tea. Unsweet tea would be called "iced tea," and there is no such thing as "sweet tea."

While living here in Nashville, I have come to know that there is no consistency when it comes to ordering tea. Some people mean sweet tea when they say regular; some mean unsweet; and still some mean hot tea. Nobody ever means fruit tea when they say regular tea, but they do sometimes refer to fruit tea as "tea punch" even though the fruit tea at my restaurant is actually made with ginger ale and is called "ginger tea" rather than "fruit tea" anyway.

I'm a very adaptable person. I can call what I have grown up knowing as "pop" a "coke." No problem. I've started saying "ya'll." It is kind of fun, but if ya'll can't get it figured out, how am I supposed to know what you are referring to when you say "regular tea?"

One more question-what's up with ordering half sweet tea and half unsweet? If you don't like it as sweet as we make it, just order unsweet and sweeten it yourself! There is plenty of sugar on the table!


Kathy T. said...

I'd think regular tea would be either unsweet tea or hot tea. Shrug. Sweet tea is sweet tea, no? I always order unsweet tea or hot tea.

Anna said...

Huh - Totally understand your confusion.....

I'll blog later today about Coffee and Coffee Coffee, it was a scene I witnessed recently with an American tourist.