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High Time for Tea in America


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article from Businessweek

As revolutions go, the Republic of Tea's beverage mutiny has been quite successful. Originally established in 1992, the company has created one of the fastest-growing and most-lucrative high-end tea brands in the country. Unlike many mass-market outfits, the Republic of Tea scours the planet's tea-growing gardens, farms, and estates for leaves, and sells only the highest-quality premium products. The product line is constantly expanding and evolving. It began with 21 types of tea, and now boasts 180 brews ...a number of other specialty outfits have entered the market. There's Tazo, based in Portland, Ore., Stash Tea in Tigard, Ore., and Honest Tea in Bethesda, Md. "I remember going to the Fancy Food Show in 1991," says Rubin, "and there were 12 tea companies. This year there were 73."

Any particular tea company to which you are especially loyal? :rolleyes:

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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I've tried a lot of them, still prefer the old brand Twinings.

It's a fascinating article about succesful brand management, though. Very interesting.

"embassies" indeed!

Edited by mrsadm (log)

*****

"Did you see what Julia Child did to that chicken?" ... Howard Borden on "Bob Newhart"

*****

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  • 2 weeks later...

I like RoTs teas, in fact my favorite tea of all brands is their Blackberry Sage. It has the perfect balance of flavors... for me.

I drink a lot of tea (not as much as I used to because I finally found coffee that I like) but it is my major hot beverage.

I buy from a number of purveyors, Chado, Harney's, Adagio, CapitalTea(Canada), Upton, Shan Shui, Todd & Holland.

Plain teas, blends and "bespoke" teas, rare and "presentation" teas. Different types, depending on mood, weather, company, season or for a particular type of food.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Just remember, high tea = working person's meal (high because you eat it at a table), afternoon (or low) tea = fancy finger sandwiches and extended pinkies.

I like Upton's Teas for every day first thing in the morning cuppas. Tien Ren for pouchongs and oolongs. Harney's, Todd & Holland and Mariage Freres for fancy and flavored teas.

regards,

trillium

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I'm kind of fond of sampling higher quality stuff, but would rather not have a pound of something I didn't like gathering dust in the cabinet. Upton has a really great selection of single estate stuff and more and you can get almost all of it in sample sizes. If anyone knows of other merchants who do the same I'd love to hear about them.

Bill

article from Businessweek
As revolutions go, the Republic of Tea's beverage mutiny has been quite successful. Originally established in 1992, the company has created one of the fastest-growing and most-lucrative high-end tea brands in the country. Unlike many mass-market outfits, the Republic of Tea scours the planet's tea-growing gardens, farms, and estates for leaves, and sells only the highest-quality premium products. The product line is constantly expanding and evolving. It began with 21 types of tea, and now boasts 180 brews ...a number of other specialty outfits have entered the market. There's Tazo, based in Portland, Ore., Stash Tea in Tigard, Ore., and Honest Tea in Bethesda, Md. "I remember going to the Fancy Food Show in 1991," says Rubin, "and there were 12 tea companies. This year there were 73."

Any particular tea company to which you are especially loyal? :rolleyes:

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Upton has a really great selection of single estate stuff and more and you can get almost all of it in sample sizes.

I ordered some of their sample packages and was delighted by the flavors! They have an excellent website and it is updated weekly: Upton Tea.com

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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Harney & Sons offers samples. Their teas are excellent and of the highest quality. The selections can give you great examples of the world's finest teas at a reasonable price.

Adagio offers samples and the little tins in which the samples are packed are a nifty bonus. The other items combined with samples are all excellent buys.

Special Teas offers some fine sample packages that allows you to compare the different teas from a particular region. For one who is learning about tea or teas new to them, these are a bargain.

Golden Moon Offers small sample packages of three teas each but with the addition of a free full tin of another type of tea. It is an excellent bargain if one of their teas is familar to you or is one of your regular teas.

The Rose, Vanilla Jasmine and the White Persian Melon are awesome flavored teas. The latter is a white tea. I also keep the Honey Pear on hand - it is a black tea and iced is exquisite and hot is wonderful with desserts.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I've long been a fan of Upton's, as those who've seen my sporadic posts in this Forum will know.

I've gotten some good teas from Harney's but, to my taste, never quite as good as the best I've had from Upton.

I'd gotten some good teas from Frair & Grimes in Seattle before I discovered Upton, but their website seems to be down now so I don't know whether they're still in business.

T Salon in NYC is a fun place to shop if you're in the area and they have some good quality teas, as well as a stunning array of tea paraphernalia. Their Mahuxami Assam is particularly interesting. I've never ordered from them online because I still get into NYC once in a while.

Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea? How did it exist? I am glad I was not born before tea!

- Sydney Smith, English clergyman & essayist, 1771-1845

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I like Adagio very much for roibos tea, which is the only thing I've ordered so far. I found them on Amazon while looking for a good price (they are imexpensive compared to my local places, even with shipping) and as a nice bonus got an offer for $5 off the first time I order from them directly.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I just happened upon three half-pound shiny black tins of Grace Rare Tea, from the Grace Tea Company:

Darjeeling, Superb 6000;

Owner's Blend (Rare Congou---I had no idea what this was; the name was enchanting---it's a lovely sippy tea, almost nutty) and

Connoisseur (Master Blend), which, despite the luxuriously-elite name, is a nice morning cuppa, plain or with cream and sugar.

They're all lovely, brewed in the sweet little clerical-collar insert to my ancient McCormick (free premium in the 40's) teapots.

We're avid RoT people, and have almost every flavor on hand. Friends from England brought us a Royal Purple tin of delicious "Wimbledon" tea last Summer. Wish we could buy that blend here.

Edited by racheld (log)
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Hello there,

I order my favorites teas online from Upton or In Pursut of Tea. And I always order something new to try. Lately I have been drinking the Assam Meleng and Assam Mangalam as well as the Bond St English Breakfast and the Russian Caravan.

Angela

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  • 4 weeks later...

If I'm at the mall, I usually get some tea from Teavana. Their peach oolong and masala green chai are so fragrant and yummy. Otherwise, my current stash consists of tea that I've purchased from Teaism, Tealuxe, and Alice's Tea Cup. If I've sat down for a cup at a tea house, I'm more likely to buy loose tea from them. There's a small coffee shop down the street from where I work called Baked & Wired, and the other day I tried a Vietnamese tea called The Coloniel (black with vanilla). It was so good, I need to go back and get myself a tin so I can make it at home.

Republic of Tea is good, and I've liked the white tea I got from Trader Joe's as well.

"I need another magnum of your best champagne here and bring us the finest food you got stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, Sir. Lobsters stuffed with tacos."

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For flavoured teas I always go with Mariage Freres. I once though some RoT flavours were similar, but when I tried them side by side I found a huge difference in quality between MF and RoT. Huuuuuggggge! I really doubt their claim that they sell the "highest-quality premium products." They might buy good quality leaves, but the flavourings they use are definitely not the highest quality.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I love tea but it does not love me back so I can't drink it nearly as much as I would like to.

I have found that the one kind I can have with minimal discomfort is the Tazo Passionfruit. It tends to be too bitter for my taste hot, but iced and served with a dash of mint simple syrup it is excellient.

Edited by Gigi4808 (log)
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  • 2 weeks later...

The one kind I drink day in and day out is called "Genmai Cha", it's a Japanese green tea with brown rice in it. Sounds odd, I know, but after I first had it in a Japanese-Hawaiian restaurant on the Big Island of Hawaii, I was hooked. You can find it in Asian grocery stores, we have Uwajimaya locally, where you can get the freshest kind.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been a serious tea lover all my life. My favorite tea of all time used to be Twinings Earl Grey, but the past 5 years or so, it's somehow lost its flavor (it's a mere shadow of its former self). I'm not the only one who thinks so - there are a number of people I know who were devotees who've noticed it, too.

I still think that in America, the best tea you can get is Twinings, loose, brewed properly and served from a pot.

But after having spent significant periods of time in England, I've gotten hooked on the tea most of them mean when they say "tea" - P.G. Tips in its pyramidal bags. I've brought back boxes in my luggage, but it's also being sold in some specialty coffee and tea shops in the US, and I've seen it in Wegman's grocery stores. Big, full, rich, can stand up to milk in the tea. Also best made in a pot.

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I still think that in America, the best tea you can get is Twinings, loose, brewed properly and served from a pot.

Today there are so many different teas which have become popular and with which Americans have become familiar, surely Twinings is just another tea in this ever expanding market.

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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I also feel that to obtain the best flavor, tea should come loose and be infused in a teapot. However...the Rooibos I like best comes from a South African grocery-store chain called Pick N' Pay, in teabags. Love that stuff. A South African friend brings over a supply when he comes to visit about once a year.

Miriam

Miriam Kresh

blog:[blog=www.israelikitchen.com][/blog]

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My favorite tea brand is Kusmi-Tea, a company which began in Russia, then relocated to France during the Russian Revolution. I haven't tried one of their blends that I haven't liked. Unfortunately, my husband broke my teapot, so I've been resigned to drinking the few teas I have in bags (Yorkshire Red, mostly) while I plot my next trip to Montreal for a replacement. Before I found Kusmi-Tea, I mostly stocked Taylors of Harrogate and some Republic of Tea, although I find many of their blends too fruity for my taste.

The author of that article isn't kidding about the explosion of tea purveyors at the Fancy Food Show. Absolutely huge last year, but it seemed a large number of the tea folks were more focused on packaging vs. quality teas.

Julie Layne

"...a good little eater."

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