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Old 03-01-2012, 04:07 PM   #21
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Naw.. in the south they call it tea. Tea means ice and sugar (usually a lot of sugar). If you want it any other way you need to tell them.

Hot tea.
Unsweetened tea.

You say tea and you get it sweet over ice, with a wedge of lemon hanging on the rim.

I don't know where that "sweet tea" thing came from. I didn't begin hearing the term until the last several years, and I never heard it previously in Texas. And I would have heard it, if it had been in use from 1950 to maybe 1990 anywhere in Texas from Galveston to Sweetwater. (Except far East Texas that I avoid.)

It was always "iced tea." And until fairly recently (if you're old, you have a different definition of "recent"), it was unknown in a lot of the North. About 1960, my aunt's husband moved them to Boston to do his residency. When she got up that way, she stopped in a restaurant and ordered iced tea with her meal. All she got was funny looks. She finally had to order a pot of tea, ice, and water, and the whole restaurant stood around and watched her make iced tea.

I suspect "sweet tea" is something from Georgia or some other strange place. (By law in Georgia, to be "sweet tea," the sugar has to be in it while it's brewing. In Texas, it was always and mostly still is, "ice tea" (note the lack of the "d") or just "tea," and you sugar it yourself, although the "sweet tea" movement is making inroads. If you want it in a cup, you had better order "hot tea." (Although it's a little unpredictable if you just order "tea" in a Chinese restaurant.) I have noticed, too, that when it's called "sweet tea," it's often sickly sweet with sugar, almost to the point of being undrinkable.
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Old 03-01-2012, 04:58 PM   #22
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That is an interesting piece of history GLC.
Back in my soviet days, I used to put my tea in refrigerator and drink it cold a lot of times. People were like totally surprised that anybody would be drinking cold tea.
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Old 03-01-2012, 05:33 PM   #23
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I never heard it previously in Texas.
Ahh that explains that... Texas isn't the south. The south is the Virginia to Georgia out to Tennessee sorta way. Texas is over yonder a ways...
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Old 03-01-2012, 06:53 PM   #24
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The old Texians called them "The Old States."
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Old 03-02-2012, 02:21 PM   #25
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If I use lemon juice in a bottle I don't have a problem. If I go to a restaurant and squeeze there lemon into the tea I tastes great. Am I missing something.
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:34 PM   #26
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If I use lemon juice in a bottle I don't have a problem. If I go to a restaurant and squeeze there lemon into the tea I tastes great. Am I missing something.
Lemon juice in bottle!?! Welcome to the'70's and "Better living through chemistry!"
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:39 PM   #27
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Lemon juice in a bottle ingredients:

citric acid, ascorbic acid, artificial lemon flavoring, FD&C #14 yellow dye, PABA, ETDA, MSG, preservatives...

Just kidding!

Probably has lemon juice and a preservative. I've never bought the stuff. You can't get lemon zest off a bottle!
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:59 PM   #28
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Oh, and to the original poster, I have never had the tea taste bad with a slice of lemon in it. No matter hot or cold, I mean ice tea.

^That
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Old 03-03-2012, 03:56 PM   #29
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Hot tea isn't refreshing at all. Sweet iced tea is cool and refreshing, something to drink when it's hot outside and a great alternative to soda, especially if you use the yellow or pink bags of sweetener as opposed to sugar. A good majority of places will ask if you want sweet or unsweetened tea when you order and I opt for the unsweetened so I can add pink/yellow bags to it myself because I prefer the flavor with tea. NOTE: I'm born and raised in Texas and you can't find anything but iced tea here unless a place specifically offers otherwise on their menu.
As for lemon, I can take it or leave it but I NEVER, EVER want a slice of lemon in my tea. I always ask for the lemon on the side and I'll send back the tea if it comes with a lemon in it. Reason: I have a hard time believing every restaurant thoroughly washes their lemons.
Side note: Lime juice is better than lemon juice in tea IMO. Growing up in South Texas with lots of Mexican population the lime is very ubiquitous, just as much as lemons if not moreso. Heck just the other day I was at a restaurant that had a bucket full of sliced limes next to the tea dispenser with no lemons to be seen and it was a nicer place too. Plus no seeds in limes is great because getting a lemon seed stuck in your straw is annoying, or worse, sucking it through the straw and getting it in your mouth.
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Old 03-04-2012, 12:57 PM   #30
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Hot tea isn't refreshing at all. ...
I bet this is a whole discussion in it's own right. I bet a lots of people will strongly disagree with you. Take for example, all the southern states of what used to be soviet union. Uzbekistan, Kazachstan, Kirgiz ...
hot tea is exactly what they drink during hot summer day. There are small tea houses almost everywhere so you can stop for few minutes and have a cup of a hot tea.
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