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Summer is Iced Tea Time

June brings Ramadan, Father’s Day, Flag Day and even National Doughnut Day are observed, and summer makes its arrival. But for the entire 30 days it’s National Iced Tea Month, celebrating the most beloved southern drink.

A popular story is that an enterprising English merchant at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, due to the unexpected hot weather, decided to add ice to his tea servings. This is not the real story of the birth of iced tea, but it did boost the beverage’s popularity.

Actually, English and American variants of iced tea had been in existence since the early 1800s. The first were cocktails of tea and alcohol known as “tea punches,” and green tea was preferred over black. Black tea today is the preferred tea probably taking the lead around 1884. A recipe published by the Boston Cooking School gave a recipe for iced tea using black tea. “House Keeping in Old Virginia” introduced the making of sweet iced tea in 1879 but it calle...

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