Ideal Tea

Chief among George Orwell's pet peeves was people who put milk in their cups before the tea. In 2003, after studying the ideal cup of tea for two months, Loughborough University professor Dr Andrew Stapley announced that tea in fact tastes better if poured over the milk. The findings were released to coincide with the centenary of the Orwell's birth.

[Stapley's advice? Use soft water and loose-leaf Assam tea, warm the pot rigorously before filling, and allow tea to brew for three minutes... Tony Benn, a 10-pint-a-day tea drinker, was the first to taste the ideal brew at the Royal Society of Chemistry headquarters in London. His verdict? "It is very tasty, delicious." He disagreed, however, on the milk issue: "I take Orwell's view -- you put the tea in first, then you know how much milk you need to put in to get exactly the right colour."]

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