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 in 2016 by regaining the Guinness title for World's Largest Iced Tea - a distinction it holds to this day.
So what did it take to brew the title-snagging 2,524 gallons of sweet iced tea?
Here's the breakdown:
210 pounds of loose leaf tea
1,700 pounds of sugar
3,000 pounds of ice
6 hours of brewing time
Smashing the Record
A sweet tea-centric festival set the stage for Summerville's strategy to execute its master plan. On June 10, 2016, confidence was high that the town 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.
Sweet Tea Trail
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 that invites visitors to sip their way through route of local shops while enjoying sweet cups of Southern culture over ice.