If you have grown up reading mysteries like I have, you’d know that some of the most brilliant discoveries made off the crime scene, happened over a cup of tea.
The room is tense, all members related to the deceased are sitting around the room — one of the them is the killer. The detective takes a deep, calm sip of tea and looks from one person to the next, casually scanning past the killer to the mot obvious person to be accused. One by one, the secrets of every person in the room is laid to the fore except one. The killer makes a dash for the door and is timely grabbed by the police officers, everyone lets out a shriek at the development and the detective goes back to calmly cradling the cup of tea before taking another sip.
From Victorian murder mysteries to American TV series, tea has been the preferred drink to accompany the brilliant fictional minds to solve the most complicated cases. Goes a long way to prove why coffee can keep you standing through the day but tea can get so much more done. But we’re not debating the brews all over again, instead we’ll be looking at some of the most exceptional fictional greats who adored their cup of tea — including a certain ‘high-functioning sociopath’.
Artwork by Brent
Although you’d know her more for her love for scones and sandwiches but then, that’s because they complement a good cup of tea so well. Her breakfast and afternoon tea became a bit of a ritual among readers who added her hardbound adventures — from cover to cover — as their teatime affliction. Miss Marple speaks highly of her maid, Florence, who was believed to make the most delicious tea cakes.
‘I think, my dear,’ she said, ‘we won’t talk any more about murder during tea. Such an unpleasant subject!’
Today, a number of tea rooms are run in the fictional sleuths name. The most famous being in Melbourne and is, quite obviouosly, known for its array of scones and sandwiches — with tea.
Not really written as a classic but his calm and devotion to the teacup does merit our first American detective in The Mentalist series, a top choice on this list. Haunted by a personal tragedy, his ability to deduct criminal minds in pursuit of Red John, is fuelled by tea.
“Tea? It’s like a hug in a cup.”
Simon Baker, the actor who plays the detective, was delighted that his character shared his passion for tea. Today, there is still quite a market for the dainty little teacups that the character is seen holding in the television series.
This famous fictional Belgian and fascinated the world with the discoveries made by his ‘little grey cells’. Another one of Agatha Christie’s creations, Hercules Poirot, has been a personal favorite and hence the unresolved mystery behind his favorite tisane has meant too much.
Poirot does not have colds, Miss Lemon. It is well-known that Poirot scorns but the greatest of afflictions. My tisane, if you please.
Since Christie made no mention of the particulars of this legendary detective’s tisane — except that he preferred three spoons of sugar, there has been much debate around it. Among the top contenders in the ingredients are chamomile and anise.
The award-winning investigative journalist who travelled the world to solve mysteries and explore new cultures was spotted enjoying a cup of tea in The Blue Lotus. His adorable pup, Snowy, stays close at his heels.
While Tintin’s adventures around the world are gripping in their own distinct way, it is the comic strip that still draws travel and tea lovers to its company.
One of the most celebrated private detectives in literature who has several British and American adaptations to his name, Sherlock Holmes and his fictional world of Baker Street is legendary. Among the most recent adaptations by BBC, the fictional character is played by Benedict Cumberbatch who shares the character’s passion for tea and has given one of the most convincing twists to Arthur Conan Doyle’s character as a modern day “high functioning sociopath”.
Just tea for me, thanks!
Sherlock is frequently seen sipping on a weak milk tea and in one of the most iconic scenes in the series shares a cup with his arch enemy, Moriarty. The tea definitely seems to be one of his few enjoyments through his days of waiting for an exciting case, apart from his violin.
Do you have a favourite mystery solver who loves their tea as much as the ones listed here? Let us know!
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