Ah, Turkey; Home of the Hagia Sophia, a culmination of Persian and Roman cultures, and birthplace of some of the strongest coffee known to mankind. While home to some of the oldest houses of worship in the world, there’s a good argument that the Turkish people take their coffee more seriously.
Funny, then, that the most consumed beverage is tea.
Yes, tea, or çay (pronounced chai) is consumed from sunrise, to sunset, and then some in this country. They actually consume more tea on average than the British do! So, in honor of this culture, we’re going to go ahead and tell you have to have an amazing Turkish Tea Party!
First off, you’ll need Turkish Tea Glasses, properly called Incebelli. Unlike normal teacups, which are more rounded, wide-lipped, and bowl shaped, a Turkish Tea Glass is more commonly called “tulip” shaped, and lacks any sort of handle for holding. Pinkie out isn’t as necessary, apparently! Go for a double walled one to avoid unnecessarily toasty hands. There is a very particular way to brew your tea for real authenticity, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
As you’re now an international party planner, knowledgeable in all sorts of cultures, you’ll be better off going for something new, adventurous, and fun. Why not try a decorative theme like a traditional Turkish tea room? Open-air and relaxation are the ways to go.
A big thing about Turkish tea houses, apart from tea and socializing, are board games! Try to invest in some classics, like Mancala or Checkers or something new - Settlers of Catan or maybe Carcassonne. Something simple and tactile to play while you unwind with all your friends with a cup of properly made Turkish tea.
Told you we’d get back to that.
Now, the traditional Turkish way of brewing tea is actually how most tea connoisseurs recommend you drink your tea: A double tea kettle and a little extra effort. Using a double tea kettle, which is exactly what it sounds like, boil water in the base pot, about 2 Liters or 8 Cups.
Put the loose leaf tea into a fine sieve and rinse off any tea dust (that weird powdery stuff you sometimes find in the bottom of your mug) from your leaves before moving them to your upper kettle. Once the base kettle is ready, pour about half of the water into the upper kettle. Reduce heat, properly steep, and let you tea get properly aerated by the base kettle.
Serve immediately and enjoy your tea during your lovely tea party!