American tea culture encompasses the methods of preparation and means of consumption of tea within the context of the culture of the United States.
American restaurants and workplaces typically offer machine-made drip brew coffee by default, while hot tea brewed by the cup with tea bags, an American invention, is available by request. In the U.S. south, pre-brewed, chilled, and sweetened tea, a regional favorite called sweet tea, may be served at all meals and throughout the day as an alternate to other beverages. In the United States, about 85% of the tea consumed is served cold, or iced. Iced tea is more frequently consumed during periods of hot weather or in lower latitudes, and hot tea is likewise more common in colder weather. Any confusion when one is visiting different parts of the country can easily be solved by explicitly asking for either "hot tea" or "iced tea." Afternoon tea, as a meal, is rarely served in the U.S. except in ritualized special occasions such as the tea party or an afternoon out at a high-end hotel or restaurant, which may also offer cream tea on their menu.
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