Of Family & Tea: Novelist Lisa See’s Tea Journey

Six-time New York Times bestselling author, Lisa See, loves tea so much that she wrote a novel with Pu-erh tea as its historical background. This comes as no surprise if one knows the See family’s journey, of immigrants in the Wild West and Chinatown with a dash of Hollywood, intertwined with tea.

Curios: First Tea Humidor

Encasing tea in these elegant jewelry cases of inlaid wood was deceptively challenging. This is because the world’s first tea humidor is exquisitely designed for modern travel — with all its variations in pressure, humidity, and temperature. It took artisans in France, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy four years to perfect the system which consists of […]

Origins: Tea Cultivation Takes Root in Oregon’s Willamette Valley

Tucked away near Oregon’s Willamette River in Salem, is Minto Island Tea Company: a nearly half acre plot of land containing Camellia sinensis var. sinensis bushes. More botanic laboratory than tea farm, it’s a 29-year-old science project and the only place in the state of Oregon where tea is being cultivated and sold.

HARVEST REVIEW 2017: Vietnam

Vietnam in 2017 ranked as the world’s seventh-largest producer of tea and fifth in exports. It has 124,000 hectares under production in around half its provinces, including the subtropical North and tropical South. This is roughly the same as Indonesia and three times the tea-growing acreage in Japan.

Origins: Obaatian, the Brazilian Mestizo Tea

It’s dawn and Elizabete Ume Shimada is already behind her sewing machine. Every day, this 90-year-old woman wakes at 4:30 does her daily gym, has a simple breakfast and goes to her post at the front balcony of the house, to work on new bags for the lychee harvest. From here she can watch the visitors […]

Consumer: The Beauty in Tea

Centuries ago, legend has it, Asian princesses used an essence derived from the green tea leaves grown on the Korean island of Jeju to preserve their ageless beauty. Turns out, those princesses were definitely on to something. Today’s beauty products companies are capitalizing on the super-antioxidant polyphenols found in tea to make both skin and […]

Looking for that Special King of Duck Shit Aroma?

Highly-sought Phoenix wulongs mimic fruits, flowers, and herbs to delight the senses with uncanny aromas. Nothing is added.

Countenance: Travelers Along the Tea Horse Road

Tea once traveled the most daunting journey of any plant on the planet. Few tea drinkers know the story of how tea spread to every nation from its origin in the mountains of China. Traders for 13 centuries loaded tea on the backs of yaks, mules, horses, sheep, and man.  It took months for caravans […]

Culinary: Smoking Foods with Tea

Smoking is an ancient food preservation technique prized now more for the flavors imparted by the smoke during the cooking process then the actual preservation of the food. Tea sommelier and author Cynthia Gold shares new recipes for smoked pork loin, smoked quail, smoked salmon, even a smoked cocktail.

Origins: Tea in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia In a country where eating is more or less the national sport, tea is prominent on the nation’s menus — lots of it. Tea has been a traditional beverage for Malaysians for more than 150 years, particularly among Chinese immigrants although exactly when the habit took hold is unclear. But observing just […]

Zhulu tea leaves

Of Morning Dew & Half-Day Sun – Taiwan’s Zhulu Tea

A high-mountain wulong known for its elegant aroma and sweet lingering aftertaste, Alishan Zhulu tea is appreciated by connoisseurs worldwide. Discover its story from Ren Zhi Deng, who was a catalyst in transforming his hometown into one of the most revered tea-producing areas in Taiwan.

Tea Journey Blog

HARVEST REVIEW 2017: Vietnam

Vietnam in 2017 ranked as the world’s seventh-largest producer of tea and fifth in exports. It has 124,000 hectares under production in around half its provinces, including the subtropical North and tropical South. This is roughly the same as Indonesia and three times the tea-growing acreage in Japan. Exports in the first nine months of […]

Tea packaging: The Innovation Edge

Innovation in tea increasingly depends on innovation in packaging Make the tea bag go away Change the labels Freshen up Don’t hide the evidence That may all sound negative. What it really amounts to is: Don’t treat packaging in its dictionary sense of being just a container. Packaging is more than how tea is stored […]

Tea Nuances: Exploring the World of Green Tea Blends

We all know that green tea is healthy.  However, most of us have only unearthed a fraction of the green teas produced around the world.  If we were to drink a different green tea variety every day for the next five years, we would not even come close to tasting all of the green teas […]

The Times and Tides of Tea Innovation

Tea innovation is a surprisingly inexhaustible subject. Choose a topic that has shaped society, such as  trade, war, health, literature, nutrition, crime, ship design, politics, household utensils, science and technology, retailing, and social reform, and you’ll soon find strong and deep connections with tea. It has been one of the most consistent and pervasive agents […]

Harvest Review 2017: Australia

There is a clear emerging trend in the Australian market away from mainstream black tea to more specialist offerings. Australians’ choices show more discerning palates and product knowledge. This is being driven by marketing and training. Black tea consumption fell overall in the past 12 months, while specialty black teas sales grew by 4%. Green […]

Innovation in Tea: Watch These Spaces

The Innovation Imperative: Where and How, not If In a time of change, the question is not whether to innovate, but how. For tea, it’s also urgent. There are challenges to business as usual everywhere: sustainable development, shifting consumer tastes and demographics, coffee competition, yields, costs, and quality, to name just the obvious. The good […]

Pesticides in Tea: Getting a Clear Picture Not a Vague Impression

Does your tea contain pesticides? How much should that matter? Many tea drinkers have an impression that it is at least slightly unsafe as a drink. The more they are concerned with tea as a wellness aid – green tea health benefits, non-caffeinated herbal teas, natural ingredients, and organic growing, the stronger that impression is […]

The Nuances of Authentic Tea Blending

 Most people are familiar with the many black tea blends on the market but may not have much sense of the nuances of bringing together a complex set of flavors and of the wide varieties of choices that differentiate similar sounding teas. What, for instance, is the foundation of the tea blends we hear so […]

Innovation in Tea Flavor Design: Anything Goes – With Anything

How would you describe the flavor of these ten teas? They are a representative selection from the many market innovations that are having at least initial success. They consistently get positive customer reviews, and favorable informative and non-hype press and industry coverage. Some of these surely will not maintain a sustainable growth. But who knows […]

A New Era of Tea Tech and Sci: Smart Eyes, Molecular Detectives, Soft $3

Tea tech: robotics, computer vision, machine learning; Tea Sci: biogenetics, biomarkers; Soft $3: end-to-end logistics, sustainability, cost, productivity   If you search online for “tea innovation news” most of the results will be about the surge of new products. These are creative and  original. They are targeted to millennials, premiumization, flavor inventions and market-opening categories […]

Tea and Buddhism: Té if by Sea, Cha by Land

Tea and Buddhism: Much More than Just Contemplation It seems natural to associate Buddhism with tea. Tea expresses China’s history. It symbolizes the ethos and practices of  yoga, Zen and meditation.  Buddhism’s concerns for healthy daily living conjure up images evocative of tea. They highlight its calming, cleansing, contemplative, and ceremonial nature. These never even hint […]

Tearoom Revolution: The Weapon of Women’s Rights and Entrepreneurship

Tearooms are romantically portrayed as cozy and pleasant places to relax and enjoy teas with cakes, biscuits and sandwiches. Tearoom mythology is reinforced through evocations of scones and clotted cream. Hidden behind the Olde Worlde facade is a darker history. These unobtrusive locations became a force exploited by well-organized militants. They pushed aggressively to undermine […]

Kunlun Mountain Snow Chrysanthemum Tea: The two-mile high tea blossom

   Kunlun Mountain Snow Chrysanthemum tea is as striking to taste as it is to look at. It’s a candidate for any list of the world’s best herbal teas. But it also has a rich, aromatic whole leaf black tea flavor. It’s caffeine free but with a caffeine-ish zip. Additionally, it makes a terrific do-it-yourself […]

The Matcha Revolution: Baby Powder, Plastic Blankets and ¥3,000 Yen

The thousands of articles and blogs on matcha fall into two main groups: “Wow!” and “What?” Wow focuses on some aspect of how matcha has become both a favorite among tea, coffee, latte and alcohol drinkers, a dessert delicacy, an exotic cocktail and health supplement. It seems a very unlikely candidate to have created such […]

Old Age: Live Well – and Drink Tea

The health benefits of tea are increasingly established. Even discounting the extreme claims of its being a magic cure for even cancer, it seems clear that you are likely to live longer and better if tea is a daily part of your lifestyle. But how about when you reach old age? Is there anything different […]