A Definitive Guide to Tea 

Is there anything better than a pot of the good stuff? (And for the avoidance of any doubt, it does taste better from a pot. There’s nothing that riles me more than cafes and tea shops that serve tea in a mug. It’s a splash of extra boiling water for pete sake!) But a rubbish cuppa is no cuppa at all. 


At work not too long ago, the powers that be changed our tea bag brand and all hell broke loose.We take tea very seriously up here in Yorkshire; we don’t mess about.

And it’s milk after hot water, if you’re doing it properly. And don’t just show it the teabag- let it brew (for three to five minutes for black tea, which Builders’ is.)

Now, I credit myself with knowing a lot about tea. I know that the perfect tea (for me) is strong but milky. Chuck in a sweetener if I’m feeling blue. I know how to catch it in the window that is perfect drinkability. And I know that if all else fails, a cuppa will do the trick, whatever life throws at you. 

So I feel like I’m qualified to rate tea bags. Here they are (worst to best)- in my opinion.

PG Tips

The worst of all the teas. Served in McDonalds and only to be reached for in case of an emergency. Sorry that your advert’s that monkey and the man with the annoying voice and stupid face, too. 2/10


Tasty and a bit posh, but far too weak. You need two bags in one of those small Cafe Nero pots to make a normal strength cuppa and it just hasn’t got the kick to it. Worth getting up for in a hotel but not my favourite. 4/10


Waitrose own

Discovered during a recent caravanning trip to Dorset and purchased for a morning boost before being out and about for the day. Makes a lovely cuppa and very cheap too. Waitrose, you’ve done it again. 5/10



There’s a reason it’s a coffee shop but the tea bags are big, silky and luxurious. Stay away from the green stuff and slam a sugar in. Serve with a blueberry muffin and you’re away. 6/10


Yorkshire Tea

Ah, the #properbrew brew. Tasty and classic and it reminds me of home (shout to Leeds). It’s what I crave after a holiday abroad and it’s synonymous with a good cuppa. 8/10

English Tea Shop 

A less well known brand who I discovered on the medium of Twitter (when I happened to win a tea hamper one weekend – one of my proudest moments to date). Tea that’s a bit posh and comes individually wrapped. It’s luxurious and tasty (and comes in all sorts of weird and wonderful flavours- try the chocolate and vanilla, if you’re adventurous). Get it online and save it for best (like I do, with a broadsheet on a Sunday). 9/10

Brew Tea Company

My favourite ever tea. Served at my favourite cinema (Hyde Park Picturehouse in Leeds) it’s nutty and smooth and doesn’t need anything adding to it (although a splash of milk is smashing). Buy it online or at Waitrose and, for a special treat, grab the loose leaf tea. The kind folks at The Brew Company sent me some loose  leaf breakfast recently and a fellow tea afficionado at work and I have been enjoying a luxury brew daily as a special three o’clock treat. It’s simply heavenly. 10/10


Go put the kettle on then. What’s your fave?


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