Tea is the most commonly enjoyed aromatic beverage. Every tea lover starts their day with a cup of delicious tea! This amazing beverage makes us feel relaxed, fresh and gives us ultimate satisfaction and happiness. It fills our life with lots of enthusiasm and our heart with bliss. Tea can be enjoyed with activities such as composing poems or stories, tending flowers, appreciating nature, completing formal work or any household chores, having lovely conversations.
There are many varieties of tea and one of the most popular and well-known tea is ‘Vietnamese Tea’. This tea is made from leaves of ‘Camellia Sinensis’ with special and unique flavors.
History of Vietnamese tea:
Before knowing about this interesting tea, let us look back to its ancient roots! The history of tea in Vietnam is from 2000 years ago and since then, Vietnam is the oldest and largest tea producing country. Historically, drinking tea is a hobby for older and more learned people but today it is enjoyed by every age!
Vietnam Tea Association was founded on July 19, 1998, to protect the tradition of tea in the country and expand the tea all over the world. Although history for this tea has not been well recorded but drinking tea occupies an essential part in the past as well as the present era of Vietnam people.
In Vietnam, tea is a very popular beverage and preferred over coffee. For Vietnamese people drinking tea is as important as water. Also, tea for these people is free-flowing and a refreshing necessity! In the country, people usually denote tea as “Trà”. Bars and cafes serve Vietnamese tea, which is their native tea, and sometimes offer it free of cost!
This tea reflects flavors similar to Taiwanese oolong tea, Chinese and Indian black tea, Ceylon and Indian green tea. Vietnamese tea has to taste notes of intensive, boldness, and warmth perfectly matching its territory. Tea is cultivated in many tea areas known as ‘retreats’. One of the well-known tea forests is located in Lam Dong highlands.
Vietnam produces all types of tea including black, white, oolong, and green. Also, tea is made from fresh flowers, leaves, stems, and roots of a plant. This tea is named herbal tea. The tea leaves are scented with various fragrances to make it more tasty and aromatic! Until a few years back, the sale of this tea was limited to the boundaries of Vietnam country but due to export facilities, it spread at the worldwide level. This tradition of serving tea is enjoyed by all sectors of the population!
Types of Vietnamese tea:
Usually, tea in Vietnam can be classified into the following categories –
Vietnamese Green Tea –
This tea is most popular among Vietnamese people. The Vietnamese green tea has smooth, sweet, and vegetal flavors with seaweed notes. The tea is very delicate and refreshing. As Vietnam has a secret wand for cultivating green tea, tea here is an original and traditional beverage.
This tea contains low caffeine as leaves are naturally dried and not oxidized. To create variations the leaves of green tea are scented with various delicious and pleasant flavors. This tea has its own recognition worldwide.
The well known Vietnamese green teas are –
- Fish hook
- Lai Chau
- Green tea from the Nguyen province
Vietnamese black tea –
This type of tea is planted in a bush and used when they are mature. Fresh tea buds and leaves are picked and roasted in a pan until they turn slightly black in color. The process is done so skillfully that the buds do not lose their original shape and flavors.
Scented Tea –
Vietnam has discovered an antique way to present tea. The fragrant scent of flowers is mixed with the sweet and bitter taste of tea to create exceptional tastes and fill the heart with bubbles of happiness.
The most preferred types are –
- Lotus tea
- Jasmine tea
- Chrysanthemum tea
- Kuding tea
Herbal tea –
This tea is made from different parts of the plant including its leaves, stems as well as roots. This tea does not technically fall under the group of tea but due to its features is considered tea.
Popular herbal teas –
- Artichoke tea
- Chamomile tea
- Ginger tea
Milk tea –
Some of the popular milk tea are –
- Boba milk tea
- Thai milk tea
- Hong Kong-style milk tea
Vietnamese Iced Tea –
This is a well-known refreshing drink among the Vietnamese people as well as other countries. Iced tea in Vietnam is commonly addressed as ‘Tra Da’, here tra means tea, and da means ice. The tea has mellow flavors with a floral aroma. It is served in every bar, restaurant, and café located in Vietnam and the interesting thing is, sometimes the tea is offered as a complimentary drink while you are waiting for your meal!
This tea is a hero at every dining or social occasion. It can be loved either with roadside snacks or banquets and it can be enjoyed from local area to café. Vietnamese iced tea cools the body temperature during high fever or makes you feel pleasurable and chilled during hot summers.
Vietnamese Tea Ceremony –
The tradition of the tea ceremony in Vietnam is established since ancient times. This tea ceremony combines marriage in the presence of close family members, relatives, and friends.
The norms and rituals of the Vietnamese tea ceremony is beautifully described here –
- The ceremony starts from the day of engagement, where the groom’s family goes to the bride’s family to ask for their daughter’s hand.
- Further, a date is fixed for marriage by a monk.
- On the day of marriage, both bride and groom arrive at the wedding place from their respective homes.
- In the beginning, basic rituals are performed by the family from both sides.
- Now couples will exchange their rings and light a candle and bow to the altar as a sign of respect.
- The best man of the family holds a tea tray and the maid of honor pours tea in two small cups.
- Both bride and groom pick up the teacups and offer tea to every person present in the ceremony.
- After consuming tea, everyone present in the ceremony has a chance to give gifts, best wishes, wisdom, and encouragement to the newly married couple.
- Any ceremony is incomplete without a perfect click, the event is complemented with an amazing photo session!
- Lastly, the ceremony ends with offering the famous Vietnamese tea along with a huge feast!
What to wear to the Vietnamese Tea Ceremony?
A wedding is cherished only when everyone along with the bride and groom are attired in a beautiful manner. The dress to wear for the Vietnamese tea ceremony for women is ‘kimono’ and for men is ‘hakama’. Not only dress but jewelry is also noticeable, women can carry casual watches, rings, bracelets, necklaces whereas men can switch to watches. Lots of makeup should be avoided by women, except for short hair women others are advised to tie hair with a bun.
The tea ceremony celebrated in Vietnam is of simple and uncomplicated nature! The ceremony celebrates the liveliness of the Vietnamese people.
How to brew Vietnamese Tea?
We always wonder how some foods taste delicious while some are poor in taste. Ever wondered why this is so? Well, it is said that the magic lies in the hands of the person preparing the food! Similarly, delicious and pleasant tea is made only when the tea is perfectly brewed by the chef.
You all might be excited to know the recipe for making this luscious tea, so let us have a look at the magic recipe –
For serving 2 people –
- 2 cups of water
- 2 teaspoon of Vietnam tea powder
- Tea sieve
Time required –
- 5 to 7 minutes
- Add 2 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of tea powder to a teapot
- Start boiling the mixture
- After reaching the boiling stage low the heat and let it simmer for 2 to 3 minutes
- Turn off the heat and steep for 1 to 2 minutes
- Strain the tea into cups using a tea sieve
- Enjoy it hot!
Magic Tips –
- Add milk and sugar to make it tastier.
- Add lemon juice and honey for making it a healthy drink!
The Final Words –
Even if you are unable to travel far long to Vietnam, still you can enjoy Vietnamese tea sitting on your balcony, reading your favorite book! The tea is inexpensive and very simple to brew, also it can easily be included in the regular diet. Not only Vietnamese people but the entire world has become a fan of the special and unique flavors of this tea!
Vietnamese tea always surprises us with its wonderful qualities. Every sip of this tea makes us feel heavenly! So, hold your cups high and enjoy this “Trà”!