Chemists are to honour George Orwell by searching for the perfect way to make his favourite drink — tea.
The Royal Society of Chemistry's search for the perfect cuppa will mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Orwell, whose works include an essay on tea as well as acclaimed social commentaries “1984” and “Animal Farm”.
Orwell's 1946 essay “A Nice Cup of Tea” laid down 11 steps to the perfect brew, and was a reaction to a lack of guidance on tea-brewing in cook books.
Orwell's essay was a reaction to a lack of guidance on tea-brewing in cook boos. “This is curious,” he wrote in London's Evening Standard, “not only because tea is one of the mainstays of civilisation in this country.., but because the best manner of making it is the subject of violent disputes.”
Orwell said tea should be drunk strong, without sugar and from a cup with a round bottom. The tea should be poured before adding milk, he insisted, entering a debate that has caused acute controversy within the tea-etiquette world.
Another Orwell essay written in the aftermath of the World War Two sharply criticised chemists and other scientists, whom he blamed for contributing to the war.
Society Media Manager Brian Emsley hopes the project will draw attention to the important role chemists play in food, drink and public hygiene. “It's some theory, some fun,” he said. The chemists will consult specialists and members of the public before publishing their ideal technique at a reception on Wigan pier on Orwell's birthday in June.
‘Ooooh, we do love a good brew!‘ — BBC Cambridgeshire Website, 2003
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Last modified on: 2015-09-24
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