Sweet Tea

Since about Thanksgiving, we have been drinking a lot of soft drinks.  That would be “cokes” for you folks from around here, and “pop” for some of you.  I have no idea what they call it in New York.  Whatever you call it, we, the Bartfasts, need to stop. 

We had been stocking up because I’ve been easing up on the kids during these last few crazy months, and the darn things are just so cheap, if you buy 2-liter bottles at WalMart or Kroger.  Even though we’ve been drinking diet sodas, there is no denying that sodas are bad for your teeth, and just generally not good for you.

We drink plenty of milk (I’m going to have to figure out one day how I ended up with TWO Asian children who aren’t lactose intolerant).  And water’s always good.  Juices generally are not, because my kids just don’t need the sugar.  But, I’ve found that my kids enjoy dinner more if they have that “restaurant experience”, and if they can’t have sodas, the next best thing is sweet tea.

I did not know until a few years ago that sweet tea was a regional thing.  (For that matter, so are “chicken biscuits”, I’ve found).  But when I started traveling more, I discovered that outside of the southeast, it’s hard to find pre-sweetened iced tea.  Even at Disney World.  There are only two restaurants at DW that feature sweet tea, one is Trail’s End in the campground, and I don’t know the other one.  I’m sure Kat Coble knows.

I can tell you that restaurant wise, the two places I’ve been that have the best sweet tea are the Rendezvous in Memphis and Monell’s in Nashville.  Cracker Barrel is OK, but the Rendezvous and Monell’s understand how to make it: that see-through orangey-brown color, enough sweetener so it’s sweet, but not too much.

Anyway, I just  finished making a couple of gallons of sweet tea (It’s been so long since I’ve made it, I had forgotten that you have to dilute the final product, so I ended up with 2 gallons).

Let’s hear it for the official drink of the south!

Posted in Food. 10 Comments »

10 Responses to “Sweet Tea”

  1. Rachel Says:

    Soda. You forgot “soda.” 🙂

  2. dolphin Says:

    If you stop drinking soft drinks for awhile, you won’t go back. I haven’t had a soda in a few years other than a sip a few months ago which, after not having one for a long time, nearly gagged me. Not sure if it was the carbonation or the phosphoric acid, but it absolutely burned and made me wonder how I’d ever actually drank and entire can/glass of it in the past. On the other hand, soft drinks are the single most popular food item in America.

  3. sistasmiff Says:

    I have an interesting story about Sweet Tea that I guess I could blog about. I know how to make THE BEST sweet tea ever. It took me 18 years to get the how to’s but I finally did.

  4. lisahicks Says:

    sweet tea..like this tea called stevia from http://www.teacuppa.com i just used a liltle leaf to sweeten my tea

  5. Katherine Coble Says:

    I call it ‘soda’. Everyone else in my family calls it ‘pop’.

    They think my use of ‘soda’ is uppity. Seriously.

  6. Susie Says:

    I don’t know what kind you use to make tea but Jeff turned me on to the Lipton Cold Brew after he had it at a client’s a few years ago and it is excellent! and it brews really fast with cold water…and the sugar actually does dissolve, which was my fear with using cold water.

  7. nm Says:

    I have no idea what they call it in New York


    I have to ask, though, what makes sweet tea less harmful to your children than soda? Sugar is sugar, corn syrup is corn syrup. I can’t drink either, never have been able to deal with sweet drinks. Sometimes in the summer I can handle fruit tea (now that is a wonderful southern invention) or half sweet/half unsweet tea.

  8. Slartibartfast Says:

    We use Splenda (actually an off-brand) in our sweet tea. Now, that would put it on a par with diet sodas. But there something else besides the sugar, I can’t quite place it, that is harmful. Cavities are one thing, but my son seems to be losing the enamel on his teeth. Might be the acidity? I’d rather not take the chance.

    I’ll admit, I’m taking Lintilla’s word that even diet sodas are bad for us.

    And you’re right, fruit tea is a heavenly treat.

  9. dolphin Says:

    Could be the acid affecting his teeth. Most sodas contain phosphoric acid which lowers bone density so I’d assume if has a similar effect on the tissue of the teeth.

    You might try using Stevia in your tea instead of Splenda.

  10. annechen 67 Says:

    Personally, I like a little unsweetened tea in my lemon juice. But you know I’m not right.

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