The most important factor that goes into tasting tea is the one rarely mentioned in the brewing manuals: the temperament and spirit in which the tea is tasted.
If you can put yourself in the right frame of mind, quiet the chatter of the everyday, and immerse yourself in the sensory experience of brewing and tasting, every cup of tea will be beautiful.
Once you see this, you will discover the way every tea offers a glimpse of true beauty: a reflection of the land where it grew, of the care of its tea farmers, and of your own mindset in tasting.
Serious breakfast science going down at the tea house this morning as we taste test our newest AM features.
Catch their premiere tomorrow (Thursday) morning, and join us for full breakfast, every day, 8am - noon!
Steeping up the newest Big Red Robe from the Li Family in Xingcun, Wuyi.
These were some of our favorite photos from the shoot!
Wuyi Mountain Big Red Robe
direct sourced from the Li Family in Wuyi, Autumn 2013
from The Legend of Big Red Robe
In those days, the empress had grown up in the mountains of Wuyi before being taken to the imperial court to live out her days. Some say she was afflicted with homesickness, longing for the rocky misty cliffs of Wuyi, but trapped in a cage of jewels and silks…
As soon as the tea touched her lips, she awoke and began to regain strength. The rugged and humble flavor and aroma of the leaves reminded her of home and restored her spirits.
We’re sipping Zhu Rong Yunnan Black Tea this morning, bright and sunny to break through the rain clouds here in Minneapolis.
Lady Zhu Rong was a legendary dagger-wielding warrior-queen of Yunnan descended from the god of fire. The spice and power of this tea compelled us to evoke her kingdom of Dian, an independent state before it was conquered by China and renamed Yunnan.
Zhu Rong Yunnan Black Tea
We’re focusing in on Silver Buds Yabao with some of our favorite photos from this morning’s tasting and a new article all about this unusual Yunnan tea.
Focus on Yabao
Hiking the shore of Lake Superior in our cold Minnesota winters demands a steaming thermos of tea, and the warm spiced notes of yabao fit the bill perfectly…
Silver Buds Yabao
Longing for Spring? Pour a little spring time into your cup with Yunnan White Jasmine, beautiful any time of the year.
Yunnan White Jasmine is scented traditionally, without fragrances or artificial oils, by adding jasmine blossoms to the tea leaves as they dry. Every evening for seven days, fresh jasmine blossoms from local plants growing nearby are scattered on the tea leaves. Each morning, the jasmine is removed by hand & replaced with fresh blossoms for another night of scenting. The result is a perfectly balanced and integrated brew, steeping after steeping.
NEW tea wares now available!
Blue Lotus Gaiwan and Floral Lotus Gaiwan
These practical, affordable gaiwans are made of thin, lustrous porcelain and screen-printed with classic blue lotus pattern. The traditional shape of the 4oz gaiwans make them ideal for brewing any loose leaf tea in your collection, and a versatile addition to any tea set.
Garden Landscape Test Tube Steeper
Hand-Painted Blue Fish Test Tube Steeper
Glass and painted porcelain steeping solution includes porcelain strainer, glass pitcher and glass cover, all in one. The tall, porcelain test-tube-style steeper works well with any style of tea. Clear glass handles protect your fingers from heat and make for easy pouring from the glass pitcher. Once you’re finished steeping, the cover doubles as a saucer and strainer stand for easy resteeping.
Scalloped Celadon Tea Cup
NEW celadon glazed tea cup with wide, shallow bowl and scalloped edging. Cup interior features beautiful details within the celadon glaze for an abstract floral, lotus effect at the bottom of the cup.
NOW AVAILABLE while supplies last:
Haixintang Stone-Pressed 2006 Sheng Pu’er
This limited edition Haixintang Sheng Pu’er from Wu Liang Shan is made from wild-picked special grade leaves and buds. Due to the limited nature of this Reserve Tea, we have only three full 400g cakes to release. To make sure as many tea lovers as possible have the opportunity to enjoy this extremely fine sheng pu’er, each cake will be carefully broken up and shared by the ounce.
Less than 10,000 cakes of this special pressing were ever made and released. We are sharing tea from three of those 400g cakes, editioned and numbered 001845, 001847 and 001853.