Summerville Reclaimed the Iced Tea Record

By:Libby Wiersema


How do you take your tea? In South Carolina, the most common answer is iced, sweet and served up in a tall glass. That glass grew exponentially taller when the town of Summerville celebrated National Tea Day by attempting to regain the Guinness title for World’s Largest Iced Tea, a distinction that was sneakily snagged by another entity just months after last year’s win.

A sweet tea-centric festival set the stage for Summerville’s strategy to execute its master plan. On June 10 at the Summerville Town Hall confidence was high that it would take back its thirst-quenching claim to fame during the Record-Smashing Tea Party. The crowd got to witness the spectacle of a giant Mason jar filled with more than 2,400 gallons of South Carolina’s favorite elixir. An adjudicator representing Guinness Book of World Records was on hand to make the final pronouncement.

The significance of the World’s Largest Iced Tea title lies in the history of Summerville, known as the “Birthplace of Sweet Tea” thanks to the discovery of an 1800s Confederate encampment provision list that included mass quantities of sugar and tea. In response to the find, the town established the “Sweet Tea Trail,” a route of local shops where visitors can enjoy a sweet cup of Southern culture over ice.

So what does it take to brew more than 2,000 gallons of sweet iced tea?

Here’s the breakdown:

* 210 pounds of loose leaf tea

* 1,600 pounds of sugar

* 3,000 pounds of ice

* 6 hours of brewing time

For more information, check out the details on the Summerville Facebook Page.

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This scenic town was originally populated by Lowcountry citizens who retreated here from Charleston in the summer to escape malaria. By 1891, its reputation as a health r ...

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