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Take Time for Tea

A distillation of over 300 years of tea expertise, Time for Tea is more than just a book. It's an adventure into the spectacular world of tea, together with 50 inspirational recipes, perfect pairings, teatime hacks and ancient history.



Gathering everything you need to make the most out of your cup in every sense, Time for Tea is an ode to Britain’s favourite beverage. Written by award-winning food writer and Fortnum's devotee Tom Parker Bowles, our entertaining and authoratitive guide is colourfully brought to life through the illustrations of BAFTA-nominated cartoonist Zebedee Helm and photography by the award-winning David Loftus.


Read on for a small, exclusive sip of our new book – and the next time you take time for tea, perhaps you might just do so with the new teatime collection we've created in the book's honour.


Introducing the Time for Tea Collection

From fine bone china to a very special tea timer, our new teatime collection has been created in honour of our new book, and is adorned with illustrations by the brilliant Zebedee Helm.

The Recipes of Tea

a foray into food

It's not all about biscuit dunking (although there's a chapter on that too). Discover the versatility of tea as a pairing for all kinds of sweet and savoury dishes, and even as an ingredient itself. If you're looking to replace the rattling of china with the sound of clinking glasses, peruse our mouthwatering tea-infused cocktails, which include delights such as our No. 17 recipe.

The History of Tea


While our own story with this extraordinary drink is woven throughout, you’ll discover tea’s own rich and fascinating history with our timeline of tea, charting its origins from ancient China to its arrival at Fortnum's, eventually becoming the "Most Famous Tea Counter in the World".

Around the World with Tea


An exciting journey of discovery takes you to different parts of the world that have played a key role in the development of tea. Your voyage begins in ancient China, where a powerful emperor, by a miraculous accident, is said to have created the first cuppa. Your next stop finds you at the cool, crisp foothills of the Himalayas in India where Darjeeling was first discovered. From there, you'll traverse Asia before stepping onto the sun-drenched shores of Africa and scaling the mountainous Americas. 

Terroir is All

a trek through terroir

Terroir isn't just difficult to pronounce. It's also key to why different teas taste the way they do. Intrigued? Well it's pronounced teuh-waa, and it refers to the environmental factors - from the weather to the soil - that make each type of tea distinctly delicious. Learn more about terroir here.

When it comes to the rules of tea, a 'do what makes you happy' attitude is welcomed

The Art of the Cup

An expedition into etiquette

Welcome to the rules of tea, where pompous etiquette is resolutely discouraged and a ‘do what makes you happy’ attitude is favoured. However, if you want to achieve the most satisfying sip from your brew, the book provides a helpful guide to enhance your tea tasting experience, from what water to use to the perfect temperature for each blend and even the order in the sequence the milk would be best added.


From single estate rarities and famous blends to fruit infusions and even chocolates flavoured with the stuff, tea runs through Fortnum's veins like white water through Darjeeling's ravines. Our book is testament to the centuries of tea crafting excellence that have made our 150-strong collection the world’s most illustrious and celebrated.


Now, enough of the talk - it’s time for tea.