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Imahomer
12-04-2008, 06:36 PM
My Grandmother used to drink her tea, or coffe from a saucer. She would be poured a cup of tea and then pour that into the saucer. I never thought twice about it, but I've only seen it done a couple of times since and only in old movies.

Has anyone else seen or heard of this?

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 06:39 PM
not using a saucer....but close.

My family and associated cultural relations, drink tea using a -glass- instead of a mug or teacup, and then tend to pour part of the glass into a bowl and drink the tea from the bowl.

Sounds terrible bizzare doesn't it? There is even a -graceful- way to hold the bowl with one hand, which I can actually do.


...but their tea is -scalding- hot in the cup and the larger surface area of the bowl gets it to drinkable temp faster. At least that is my logic for -why-

Imahomer
12-04-2008, 06:43 PM
What is the background of your family? My Grandmother was French.

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 06:47 PM
My family are Russian...of the nice peasanty variety.

Imahomer
12-04-2008, 06:53 PM
Ok. I like the peasant people! :eusa_clap

It will be interesting to watch this and see if there are many who respond to it.

Ms. McGraw
12-04-2008, 06:54 PM
We were just talking about this at Thanksgiving dinner! My boyfriend's father said several adults he knew when was a young child in western Kentucky drank their tea this way! My mother said she also vaguely remembered family members from that geographical area drinking tea that way. I then mentioned that I had seen on the History Channel that people drank tea this way because the handle on the tea cups became so decorative and delicate they couldn't be used for their intended purpose. My boyfriend's father assured me this could not be the case with the people he was referencing, as they were certainly not drinking from fine china but I still think it could have been a habit learned from an earlier generation who may have had fancier tea cups.

Imahomer
12-04-2008, 07:03 PM
Wow... that's an interesting read on why they used a saucer! So far we have:

1. To speed up the cooling process of a hot beverage.
2. To save delicate handles from being broken.

Both of those answers make sense to me.

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 07:12 PM
Wow... that's an interesting read on why they used a saucer! So far we have:

1. To speed up the cooling process of a hot beverage.
2. To save delicate handles from being broken.

Both of those answers make sense to me.


Actually....mine is also probably reason 2 .....I think reason 1 is merely a side benefit...

I mentioned they used glasses and not mugs....there are thus -no- handles and their hands are on hot glass....

Traditionally, russian tea glasses had a metal filagree holder called a podstakannik.

http://www.therussianshop.com/russhop/dacha/teaglass.jpg

So in the absence of holders....they couldn't hold on to the glass....but were not -sold- on the strange foreign mugs or cups.

Now its just sort of -what one does-.....

Imahomer
12-04-2008, 07:38 PM
Thanks for that photo Miss Neecerie. I've actually seen those cups/glasses before, but didn't know anything about them.

I was always under the impression that my Grandmother did the saucer thing to cool her drink off more quickly. I just wished I had asked her about it.

just_me
12-04-2008, 07:41 PM
My family are Russian...of the nice peasanty variety.
My grandfather was Russian (also peasant variety). Piece of sugar between his teeth and tea from a glass. No saucer, though. :)

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 07:42 PM
My grandfather was Russian (also peasant variety). Piece of sugar between his teeth and tea from a glass. :)


yep.....hehe I was leaving out the charming method of sweetening tea...my great grandma did it too...


as kids...we always built sugar bridges.... as you wait for them to pour tea....you use 5 sugar cubes in a row...and cram them into the cup...its just right to actually stay wedged there.....across the opening. Then as they pour the hot tea, you get the amusement of watching the bridge slowly melt

Please note: this only works in cups...

dhermann1
12-04-2008, 07:44 PM
I remember from "somewhere" (my favorite source of information) that this was how tea was originally drunk. You had a big mug of tea, or whatever, and you had a saucer into which you porued a sippable amount. Only later did people start placing the mug IN the saucer, for convenience. I have on good authority (see above) that this is the actual historical fact of the matter.

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 07:52 PM
I remember from "somewhere" (my favorite source of information)


Nooooo.... This is the wrong favorite source of info.

Everyone knows it's 'They said.......'

and when asked who they was....'well you know, them!'

Imahomer
12-04-2008, 07:55 PM
Them, as in Giant Killer Ants?:eusa_doh:

Josephine
12-04-2008, 07:58 PM
http://www.therussianshop.com/russhop/dacha/teaglass.jpg

My great grandmother had some of these (no Russian in our family though), but when she died they were nowhere to be found. I really would have liked to have them. :(

Miss Neecerie
12-04-2008, 08:02 PM
My great grandmother had some of these (no Russian in our family though), but when she died they were nowhere to be found. I really would have liked to have them. :(


no one in my family has any either......

I want some....but i want a -set- and those are pricey....so i keep thinking I will bid on random mismatched soviet ones on ebay......but never quite do...

Caity Lynn
12-04-2008, 08:03 PM
If George Washington approved, I'd say it's acceptable.It was done to cool it faster. (This little bit of info was actually in my History book, he used it for an analogy for spreading power or something...don't recall the lesson, thought it was interesting about the tea.)

Lone_Ranger
12-04-2008, 11:56 PM
not using a saucer....but close.

My family and associated cultural relations, drink tea using a -glass- instead of a mug or teacup, and then tend to pour part of the glass into a bowl and drink the tea from the bowl.

Sounds terrible bizzare doesn't it? There is even a -graceful- way to hold the bowl with one hand, which I can actually do.


...but their tea is -scalding- hot in the cup and the larger surface area of the bowl gets it to drinkable temp faster. At least that is my logic for -why-

Did you family have a samovar? Heated with dry pinecones, to add a hint of the resin's flavor to the tea.

Or a crumpled Pravda, as the Soviet era joke goes....

Miss Neecerie
12-05-2008, 06:39 AM
Did you family have a samovar? Heated with dry pinecones, to add a hint of the resin's flavor to the tea.

Or a crumpled Pravda, as the Soviet era joke goes....


Yes and no.....

We did indeed all have samovars, in fact I have one in the house as well.

but the ones they brought are all small coal burning ones...and erm california is not a coal sort of place...so they stopped using them sometime before I was around.....

but otherwise they make it the same.....smaller pot of condensed tea concentrate into the glass...top up with boiling water from separate kettle.

Cricket
12-05-2008, 08:04 AM
I found this information online this morning looking for stuff under tea culture. I thought it was interesting, but it didn't really give a reason.

Tea found its way to Persia (Iran) from India and soon became the national drink. The whole part of northern Iran along the shores of the Caspian Sea is suitable for the cultivation of tea. Especially in the Gilan province on the slopes of Alborz, large areas are under tea cultivation and millions of people work in the tea industry for their livelihood. That region covers a large part of Iran's need for tea. Iranians have one of the highest per capita rates of tea consumption in the world and from old times every street has had a Châikhâne (Tea House). Châikhânes are still an important social place. Iranians traditionally drink tea by pouring it into a saucer and putting a lump of rock sugar (kand) in the mouth before drinking the tea.


Then upon more snooping, I found this in a blog:

When I used to work on the milk round as a boy, there were a few houses where we would stop for a cup of tea. In those days (I'm talking early 70s), we were usually given tea in a cup and saucer. Working men who were in a hurry needed to cool the tea quickly and this was often done by pouring the tea into the saucer and slurping it up. I learnt this custom from old Bill Bone, a great fellow who was a veteran of World War I. I wonder: would I get away with that in the Tea Cosy on the grounds of traditionalism. Certainly worth a try.

Once again, the cooling idea came up.

Cricket
12-05-2008, 08:07 AM
One more thing, and then I will stop. (This gets addictive)

I found this article from George Orwell (who I love) titled A Nice Cup of Tea.
http://www.booksatoz.com/witsend/tea/orwell.htm

From that article, it looks like George had the same question about "why is it considered vulgar to drink out of your saucer, for instance?"

He even mentions "the Russian style of drinking tea."

Good read about tea though.

MEDIUMMYND
12-05-2008, 02:32 PM
Drinking tea from a saucer is not uncommon but here in the UK it is very frowned upon.I agree that the tea cools faster in a saucer and thus can be drunk more quickly, i think his probably stems from when tea in cafes was served in cups with saucers thus when you got to your table some had been spilled into the saucer and was slurped out first and hey presto it was cool.Sadly the demise of the cup and saucer in favour of the mug has seen this tradition is dying out.I do think that in some countries the phrase will you join me for a dish of tea is used.Must go now feeling dry must make myself a cuppa rosie lee or shall i have a dish.:rolleyes:

Miss 1929
12-05-2008, 06:12 PM
They used to use charcoal to heat them, which is fine except it can kill you in an enclosed room, so one must open a window! I use charcoal briquets... mostly for outdoors.
The body of the samovar is a tube within a tube, the outer tube has water, the inner one fire.
On top, you would keep a small pot of killer strong tea, too strong to drink, and then put your tea in your glass (pronounced gless by my grandparents) and add hot water to bring it to proper strength. Sugar cube between the teeth, or, sometimes, a spoonful of berry jam in the tea.
I have a swell samovar that was a wedding gift, and it says USSR on it, so now it's a collectible!
But I have never drunk from a saucer, I thought it was considered unmannerly - maybe I am wrong...

WildCelt
12-05-2008, 06:52 PM
The body of the samovar is a tube within a tube, the outer tube has water, the inner one fire.

That sound a lot like a storm kettle (http://www.tamiasoutside.com/2008/11/04/kettle/). I've thought about getting one of these for backpacking for some time, now.
http://www.paddling.net/sameboat/Images/kelly1.jpg

Miss Neecerie
12-05-2008, 07:22 PM
But I have never drunk from a saucer, I thought it was considered unmannerly - maybe I am wrong...


Well I never said my people were -classy-....;)