It is December 1st! Do you have all your Holiday shopping done? I do not, so decided to do some exploring to see what kind of tea gift baskets that are available. I have several people on my list that either love tea or have expressed an interest in learning more about all the great loose tea selections available.
To help make your shopping easier, here are some of the great tea gift baskets that I have found:
- American Tea Room's Bento Box Origin Collection. This hefty tea gift has eight teas packaged in a beautiful black lacquer bento box. It includes Organic Silver Needles, Honyama Sencha, Long Jing, Bao Zhong Royale, Qimen imperial, Ceylon, Maharajah and Pu Er imperial.
- Teavana Tea Gift Set. This includes four of their most popular teas along with a perfect tea scoop ( I have one and love it!), a PerfecTea maker. The teas include My Morning Mate, Strawberry Lemonade, Fruta Bomba Green Tea, and Rooibos Chai. It is everything they will need to make a perfect cup of tea.
- Dammann Freres Coffret 1925. This collection of four teas with an infuser is in a stylish metal box. It contains Goute Russe, Jardin Bleu, Paul and Virginie, and Melange Mysterieux. These tea blends were made in France.
One last one from American Tea Room. Their Signature Black Gift Set (also available in white) contains three of my favorite teas from them along with a beautiful tea pot and two tea cups. It also has some rock candy swizzlers and a tea prep guide. It is wrapped in white linen gift wrap and tied with a bow.
Sometimes just a single vintage tea cup will do. When you don't want a full set and perhaps are just looking for something fancy to take tea in, then finding looking for something special is in order.
Taking a browse through those on available on eBay, there are a tea cups from all over the world and every era. You are sure to find something that will delight you.
Check some of them out here:
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I love double walled tea cups. Generally they don't have a handle and I love the smoothness and ability to hold the cup from any side. Some of the best known are these Bodum double walled tea cups.
The double wall helps to insulate your hand from the heat of the liquid inside. And it also gives the tea a neat appearance as it appears suspended in thin air. They are made from borosilicate-glass to withstand both hot and cold liquids.
You can get just the Bodum tea cup or they also make an infuser tea cup that has a lid and steeping basket to make a single cup of loose tea. After steeping the lid holds the steeping basket to contain any liquid when the tea leaves drain. This version comes in black, green, orange, and red. Pretty and functional too!
There is also a handled version of this tea cup too, in case you prefer one.
Mother's Day is about 2 weeks away. Is your shopping done yet? No? How about a Mother's Day Tea Gift then? Here a few gifts that your Mother will absolutely love to receive.
- Signature White Gift Set - This beautiful tea set comes with a tea pot, two tea cups, three types of American Tea Room teas (including some of my favorites), and three rock candy sugar swizzlers. It comes wrapped in white linen and a navy satin ribbon. The teas include Martinique, Brioche, and Immortal Green.
- Tea Pot - I really think you can never have too many tea pots, especially when getting a style or design that you do not have already. Does Mom have a Cast Iron tea pot yet? These are long lasting, traditional Japanese tea pots that are known for their durability and heat retention.
- Flowering Tea - Instead of flowers, get your Mom these blooms instead. These hand tied teas unfurl to reveal a beautiful tea blossom. You definitely want to steep these in clear glass so that you can watch it happen. Plus it comes in a delightfully wrapped gift box.
Whatever Mother's Day Tea Gift you decide on, she is sure to love the thought and care you placed into picking it out. You can not go wrong with any of the the items above or any of the fine teas available from the American Tea Room.
One of my favorite tea cups is my Steepware Steeping Mug. I use it pretty much every day to brew loose tea. The reason I love it so much is that in comes in three pieces: mug, lid, and steeping basket.
It is all ceramic and the steeping basket rests inside of the mug perfectly. The lid helps keep the tea warm while it is steeping. Then you just flip it over and it creates a cradle for the steeping basket to sit in. That way you don't get a wet mess on your counter or desk when you pull the steeping basket out.
About the only thing I don't like about it is that the holes in the steeping basket are just the right shape and size for rooibos tea to go through. After the tea is done brewing though, I generally let it sit for a few minutes to cool anyway and the tea leaves that do get through sink to the bottom of the mug.
If you brew loose tea on a regular basis or interested in trying it, then get a Steepware Steeping Mug today.
P.S. I tried the tip from Jessica and it worked like a charm. I added the hot water to the cup first and then added the steeping basket with Rooibos tea into it. Very cool to watch the water swirl into. Anyway there is only a small number of tea leaves in the bottom of my cup. This tip has made a great mug even better!
While out and about today, I found these neat tea to go cups and wanted to share. It is a travel tumbler with a built in tea infuser basket. On the lid there is a little lever that swings the basket into the water. When the tea is done steeping, you just lift it out of the water and it tucks away in the lid.
It is dishwasher safe, which is a huge time saver for me and fits in my car's cup holder. I'm on the go a lot and love to bring tea with me wherever I go. Oh and the lid snaps shut, so no spills either.
You can easily order it from Amazon and have it shipped right to your home. Check it out and let me know what you think. What is your favorite tea to go cup? Share in the comments below.
Teavana is having a sale! Check out all the yummy teas and fill up your tea cabinet. They have a number of loose teas on sale along with tea cups, teapots, music CDs and more.
This is a great time to check out all that Teavana offers in the world of tea. They are a great source of loose tea. I am loving their Rooibos Peach Bloom tea right now. It is a green Rooibos blended with pieces of peach and safflower petals. It is especially good blended with Strawberry Kiwi Herbal Tea.
And to help you keep your New Year's Resolutions, Teavana offers a complete selection of diet teas. They claim that drinking Oolong tea in the morning and Mate tea for the rest of the day can help to speed up your metabolism and suppress hunger. You can check these out by clicking the banner below.
If you are just starting out or are a long time tea drinker, it is always a great idea to have all of the right tools for brewing the perfect pot of tea. Here is our list of the Top 5 Tea Essentials that you should have in your kitchen.
- Tea Kettle. You need hot water when making and having an appliance that is devoted to this task makes it very easy. We currently use this Chef's Choice Tea Kettle. I like that it is stainless steel, shuts off automatically, and will not operate if there is no water in it. It holds 1 3/4 quarts of water, which is perfect for making a pot of tea. It boils water in minutes and is much faster than trying to do so on the stove top and safer than using the microwave. Someday I would love to have the Breville Variable Temperature Kettle, as it brings water to 5 different temperatures no thermometer required. This is a great feature for tea making as different types of teas need different temperatures of water for the perfect steep. For now the Chef's Choice is a great tea kettle though.
- Teapot. When brewing loose leaf tea, it is necessary to have place for the tea to brew. Tea leaves that have a chance to open, infuse the water with more flavor than your standard teabag tea. There are many different ones to choose from, made from a variety of materials. The standard teapot is ceramic, but there are also glass, stainless steel, and cast iron ones.
- Infuser/Strainer. Many people that brew loose leaf tea prefer to steep their tea inside of an infuser basket. These generally sit within the lip of the teapot and then can be pulled out when the tea is done steeping. We prefer brewing the tea loose inside of the pot and then pouring the tea through a stainer into a tea cup. We are currently using the Rösle Tea Strainer and absolutely love it. It is a very fine mesh, so even the smallest of tea leaves do not get through.
- Tea cups. It is always nice to have an assortment of teacup to choose from. Sometimes you want a large cup of tea and other times it is nice to have some smaller cups to share a pot of tea with friends. It is all up to you to have all matching cups or an oddball assortment of cups to choose from. Our tea cabinet has a collection of tea cups and mugs that we have gathered over the years.
- Tea. This is definitely the most important component of all to making a great cup of tea. All teas are definitely not created equal. Personal preference is also a very important part of deciding just what kind of tea you are going to keep in your tea cabinet. Some of our favorite teas come from Teavana and the American Tea Room. We will be giving reviews of them in future posts.
We hope that gives you a little peak into what we keep in our tea cabinet. These are definitely the tea essentials that you need in order to brew a great cup of tea.