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Customer Discussions > Cooking forum

Can I use teacups as coffee cups?

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Showing 1-25 of 135 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 22, 2010, 10:55:58 AM PST
K. Garren says:
Maybe this question is ridiculous, but when you buy a set of dinnerware, and it comes with a cup and saucer instead of a mug, can you still use them for coffee? I know I CAN, but SHOULD I? For instance, if I'm hosting a dinner and want to use my nice dishes, will I look ridiculous serving coffee in a teacup? I ask this because in the particular set I have (the Mikasa Italian Countryside) the teacups are significantly smaller than the mugs (which I do not own).

I don't know many people who drink tea after their meal, so I'm not sure why all these companies still insist on including teacups and saucers in their sets instead of just coffee mugs. Or are they supposed to both be used for coffee and I just haven't been let in on this secret?

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 11:00:41 AM PST
FiggyLeaf says:
Mugs are considered to be less formal than cups. A cup and saucer more formal. You are calling them teacups why? Because they are smaller? Doesn't matter the size, a cup and saucer can be used for coffee, tea, hot chocolate, anything.

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 11:06:35 AM PST
K. Garren says:
Aha! Okay, that definitely helps. I was referring to them as teacups because that's what they were called in their product description when I got them. I just wanted to be sure though.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 22, 2010, 12:20:36 PM PST
slw says:
I agree with figgy. I always use cup and saucer for a dinner party. If a friend comes over for a cup of coffee and some gabbing, I usually use a mug. I have a friend who uses cup and saucers for everything because she likes how it makes her feel. She hates mugs. :)

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 1:09:04 PM PST
K. Garren says:
Okay good. Then I will be sure to use the cups and saucers and not feel silly. I actually like the idea of using them more than I do mugs, I just didn't want to break any table setting etiquette. Slw, I like your friend's thinking! There's something old-fashioned and nice about a cup and saucer. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 22, 2010, 1:20:43 PM PST
slw says:
If you like her take on that, you'll like this too. When she makes toast and jam for visitors (probably just herself and husband too) she puts the jam or jams in very nice little ceramic containers with really cute little spoons. :) I've always thought she should own a bed and breakfast. :)

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 1:29:02 PM PST
K. Garren says:
That sounds very nice. :)

I love to set my table and make it pretty and whimsical, and many of my friends and neighbors tease me about it. I think sometimes they assume I'm trying to be "showey" when I do this, but really I do it more for myself than for anybody else. I'm very into table linens and pretty napkins, cute little vases to put flowers in, etc. I think it's fun. :)

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 1:40:22 PM PST
When a coffee maker refers to being 10 or 12 cup, it means a 6oz serving for cups like you seem to have

Posted on Dec 22, 2010, 3:24:45 PM PST
medialint says:
I love coffee so much that I drink tea instead. I treat coffee like a narcotic now, allowing myself a cup on weekend mornings but never during the work week. So I'd be more likely to have tea after dinner :-)

I never really differentiated the two. A cup is a cup (excepting travel mugs which tend to permanently smell of coffee once you use them for such, making them unsuitable for tea or anything else).

A nicely set table can be fun. I remember helping my mom on holidays with the "good china" and "good silverware" and wondered why the heck they spent so much $$$$$ on something they only use once a year, but it has its charms for sure.

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 6:04:06 AM PST
K. Garren says:
I drink both coffee and tea. Just depends on which I'm in the mood for. One of my sisters drinks coffee like it's crack. She literally cannot function in the morning until she's had a cup.

Some of my favorite memories are of Thanksgiving and Christmas when the china and the sterling silver flatware came out. It made dinner very special. My mom actually passed away when I was sixteen, so when I got married almost three years ago, my dad gave me his and my mom's entire set of Lenox china (12 place settings plus bowls and platters in the pattern "Moonspun"--which ironically discontinued the same year my mom died in 1995). I finally own my own home, but I have yet to take out the china and have a full sit down yet. I'm still waiting till I get to host a Thanksgiving or Christmas, which could take a few years. In the meantime I use my Mikasa Italian Countryside or my solid, stark white dishes. I love all the simple dinnerware because I use lot of bright colors in the linens to dress it up.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 23, 2010, 7:34:55 AM PST
ColdShot says:
I think 6oz cup is a normal cup of coffee, is it less than 6oz?

just use your measuring beaker with water to see!

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 7:40:28 AM PST
K. Garren says:
I'm pretty sure they're 6oz.

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 8:50:33 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on May 7, 2012, 10:48:11 AM PDT]

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 9:03:11 AM PST
K. Garren says:
AH! I LOVE that movie! Although I think the best line came from Kevin Spacey to his mother--"You know what I'm going to get you for Christmas Mom? A big wooden cross. That way whenever you feel unappreciated you can climb on up and nail yourself to it." :-D

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 10:08:05 AM PST
Joel Conard says:
I prefer tea in a 12 to 16 oz mug 'cause I like my tea! Teavana to be precise. For me, anything 'll do. "Top off my Yatzee shaker and hit the sippy cup while your at it!" lol
If your using the more formal coffee cups (aka tea cups) and saucers, have a full pot close by. The 6 oz might as well be shot glasses compared to the grande and venti we all enjoy at Starbucks. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 10:25:11 AM PST
K. Garren says:
Well, see that's partly why I asked. One, I guess when I see something called a "teacup" I assumed it was meant for tea, but I guess I've been being too literal about it. But I also asked because they are so much smaller, at least smaller than what I picture in my mind that people will drink. You're right though, that might be due to the grande and venti world we're living in. People consume such large amounts of coffee in one serving that to sit down at a formal dinner and drink coffee out of these little bitty 6 oz. cups seems odd to me. I guess the perspective threw me off and made it seem almost wrong for me to serve coffee in them. Ha!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 23, 2010, 3:38:09 PM PST
ColdShot says:
ok....well, it's one of moms little pleasures, to have her coffee in a china cup

it needs to be white so she can tell the strength of the brew from the color!!! lol

anyways, offer coffee or tea

I was looking for coffee at trader joes and all they had was black tea...so instead of being disappointed and walking away, I tried it, and it was very very good

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 23, 2010, 3:44:39 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 23, 2010, 3:46:33 PM PST
slw says:
K. Garren, My mom still takes the silver down and polishes it for special occasions. Many years ago, she gave me what was my Grandmother's really nice china. I love it. It's so delicate and sweet. I use it a lot. I only drink tea out of those cups. They just feel good and special. Now, if there is a 4 year old coming for dinner, I don't use the good china. Sometimes I use it when it's just me. Or just myself and my daughter. Use the good stuff. It will make you feel good. Just wash carefully. :)

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 5:44:33 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on May 7, 2012, 10:48:14 AM PDT]

Posted on Dec 23, 2010, 7:26:24 PM PST
There is a definite distinction between teacups and coffeecups.
Teacups tend to be far wider at the top and relatively shallow where coffeecups are quite narrow and tall.

But rather use teacups than mugs to serve coffee in a formal setting if you don't have dedicated coffeecups.

Posted on Dec 25, 2010, 9:06:41 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Dec 25, 2010, 9:07:40 AM PST]

Posted on Dec 27, 2010, 7:57:34 AM PST
Long before there were such things as mugs, and still in any formal setting, those cups were and are used for coffee! The current craze for caffeine has obscured meanings, but you were being much too literal in wondering if tea cups could be used for coffee. I don't believe there is such a thing as a dedicated "coffee cup". That's a mug according to the description. Take it from Grandma, who has been around since before mugs were invented.

Posted on Dec 27, 2010, 3:15:27 PM PST
"I don't believe there is such a thing as a dedicated "coffee cup"
Yes there is. Let's settle this once and for all.

Tea cup: shallow and wide

Coffee cup: tall and narrow

"You are calling them teacups why? Because they are smaller? Doesn't matter the size, a cup and saucer can be used for coffee, tea, hot chocolate, anything."
If you're drinking mediocre tea, coffee, chocolate etc. it doesn't matter. If you don't, it matters quite a lot. Tea is a very delicate drink and the taste does not develop in a tall cup, much less a mug. A mug may be informal and OK for teabags, but then again why even bother.

Posted on Dec 27, 2010, 4:11:31 PM PST
Description is one thing, but knowledge is another. At one time, not that long ago, there was nothing served in a mug. A mug was what a sailor might have onboard a ship, but no mugs were used in a home or restaurant for any meal or snack. It was cup and saucer so that one did not have to put a used spoon down onto a table cloth and stain it. It rested in the saucer once it was used. Tea, regardless of whether it's strong or delicate, does not develop its taste in a cup, but in a teapot that has first been heated before the tea is placed inside it and then boiling water poured over it. Coffee and cocoa were served in cups w/ saucers, again so that the spoon had a place to rest after it was used.
At a dinner it would be uncouth to put a mug out for any hot liquid. Just poor manners and/or not knowing any better.
Our culture has changed to accept mugs for every day use because we've come to imbibe in much larger amounts than ever before and because people no longer keep the values they once had for what used to be seen as proper.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2010, 5:30:15 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 28, 2010, 5:31:46 AM PST
K. Garren says:
"Our culture has changed to accept mugs for every day use because we've come to imbibe in much larger amounts than ever before and because people no longer keep the values they once had for what used to be seen as proper."

Professor McGonigle (btw, love the name), that's kind of where I got fuzzy and what prompted me to ask. I see cups and saucers as "proper", but nowadays what exactly is proper and what is not seems to have gotten shuffled up like a deck of cards. I know people that would probably look at me funny if I served them coffee in a cup and saucer--almost as if thinking 'Why are you being so fancy?'. I think people who used to use them have forgotten and younger people never got introduced to them, so when handed one they think it's overdoing it. Sad really. But I'm glad I asked because I like my cups and saucers and I will keep using them. :)
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Initial post:  Dec 22, 2010
Latest post:  Nov 14, 2013

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