Celebrity Endorsement Turns New Yorkers onto Tea

Mariah Carey’s tweet

All Mariah wanted for New Year’s was tea, and now the rest of New York has caught on. Tea sales have spiked in the city since Mariah Carey’s New Year’s Eve performance on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest where she told viewers, “I just want to take a sip of tea, if they’ll let me.”

She can hardly be blamed, considering the frigid temperatures and the havoc that can play on a singer’s vocal cords, not to mention the pressure on her to redeem herself after last year’s disastrous NYE performance. When she realized there was none, she continued, “They told me there would be tea! Oh it’s a disaster!”

For those of us who enjoy a nice cup of tea at certain times of the day or on certain occasions, it’s easy to empathize with Mariah. It does feel like a disaster when you’re expecting one and there is none to be had. But the show must go on…

Mariah Carey merchandise

“Okay, well, we’ll just have to rough it,” she conceded. “I’m going to be like everybody else, with no hot tea.” The diva later tweeted a photo of herself with a mug of tea, captioned “Found my tea!” And the storm turned into a teacup, quite literally. And some matching T-shirts too. (Buy your official Mariah Carey tea merchandise here.)

Thus, according to the New York Post, the “Mariah Carey effect” was born along with a noticeable uptick in demand for tea in the city. The Whitby Hotel, The Peninsula Hotel, The Pierre, and The Palm Court at the Plaza all reported unusually high turnouts for their afternoon teas post-NYE. The continuing cold weather also played its part, according to a spokesperson from The Whitby Hotel, which has a partnership with the Downton Abbey Exhibition and serves British-style teas, complete with clotted cream and finger sandwiches.

The Tea Council of the U.S.A. confirmed the increase in the tea-drinking trend and said Carey’s request for hot tea shows even celebrities love to drink tea, the world’s second-most popular beverage after water, reported the Post.

January is National Hot Tea Month and a great time to make health-related resolutions. More than 158 million Americans drink tea (hot or iced) on any given day and hot tea consumption in the United States has grown more than 15% over the last five years. Hopefully next year, if she performs, Mariah’s wish will come true.

Sources: Tea Association of the U.S.A., New York Post