Easter (April 24) is just around the corner and Mother's Day (May 8 ) is not far behind that. If you are looking for the perfect gift, then American Tea Room just may be able to help you out. They have offering 10% off on all teas and teacups today through Saturday (4/9/2011).
How about this pretty infuser mug for Mom?
Red and Pink Floral Tea Cup with Infuser
Or this set of 4 mugs inscribed with poems in black kanji and hiragana calligraphy:
Poem Tea Cup Set
Use code TEA10 when checking out in order to receive 10% off. Hurry because this offer is only good for the next few days.
There are a number of different teas: white, green, black, rooibos and herbal. It can seem very overwhelming at times to keep them all straight and what their differences are. Today I'd like to talk about the difference between green tea, black tea and white tea. One of the most surprising things of all is that they come from the same tea bush, Camellia sinensis. Especially when you look at them:
White Tea Leaves
Green Tea Leaves
Black Tea Leaves
It is all in the picking and processing of the leaves that make the difference. White tea is harvested from the very top of the tea bush early in the year. They only pick the top leaf and a bud. These tea leaves are then dried in the sun and that is it.
Green tea are tea leaves from the whole bush and they also undergo a step of being steamed or pan fired. Before being dried it is often rolled into different shapes depending on the type of green tea. For instance Jasmine tea is sometimes rolled into a pearl shape.
Black tea undergoes the most processing. Tea leaves from all over the bush are picked and then left in the sun to wilt. The tea leaves are then rolled allowing the tea leaves to ferment as they react with the air. The fermenting process turns the tea leaves black. They are then dried.
So that is the basics. Look for another post coming soon discussing the various types of teas within each class and why they taste so different. Hope you enjoyed reading about the differences between green tea, black tea, and white tea. Check out our Tea Shop and order some to try today.
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.
Yesterday my husband and daughter traveled to our local mall to go birthday shopping for me. My birthday is not for another 4 weeks and this was quite the surprise. My husband is usually a fly by the seat of his pants, last minute kind of guy. When they came home they had a cup of iced tea from Teavana.
My daughter loves going there to try the samples and we usually walk out with something. My husband very excitedly says "you have to try this." It was a red colored tea and I could immediately taste the jasmine. I asked him what it was and he told me it was a blend of Strawberry Lemonade and Peachberry Jasmine Sutra tea. Normally my husband is not a big fan of Jasmine tea, so it was a surprise that he liked it.
These two teas make a really great blend together and I am going to add some of both to the tea cabinet. Now is a great time to do so too, because with every $30 order placed at Teavana.com, you can receive a gift subscription to Body+Soul magazine. What a great way to do something nice for your body & soul with tea and a magazine filled with articles and tips on living a healthy lifestyle.
*Magazine subscription is valued at $9.95; refer to the Teavana website for full offer and refund details.*
I know that I am on a kick of American Tea Room teas the last few days, but I just returned from a conference and got all of these new yummy samples to try. I can honestly say that I have yet to try one of their teas that I don't like. They are all so good and the quality of the ingredients is top notch. So this morning I brewed their Lady Grey tea. It is a black tea blended with cornflowers and has a citrusy & creamy aroma. Here is my daily cup of tea picture:
You can try it yourself by clicking here.
In what I hope is a new feature I want to start sharing my daily cup of tea with you in photos. Today I am drinking an Earl Grey Rooibos from American Tea Room. It is a delightful red rooibos flavored with bergamot. It is one of the best Earl Grey teas that I have tried and a wonderful decaf option. Plus it is organic to boot.
What kind of tea are you drinking today? Click on this link to buy some today.
One of the most important components of brewing tea is water. It is important to use a good source of water, preferably filtered. Equally important is the temperature of the water. Different types of teas require different temperatures to get the best cup of tea. Here is a guide to the perfect water temperatures for brewing tea.
- Black Tea - You want to bring the water to a full rolling boil for black tea. You want to steep black tea for 3 to 5 minutes.
- Green Tea - This is the most delicate tea to brew. You will get the best cup of tea if you bring the water to 160 degrees and steep for 2 to 4 minutes.
- White Tea - A prized tea, it is a bit more robust than green tea. You will get a great cup of tea if you bring the water to 180 degrees and steep for 4 to 6 minutes.
- Oolong Tea - Bring the water to a 190 degrees and steep this tea for 5 to 8 minutes.
- Rooibos Tea - This tea is very similar to black tea in that you want to bring the water to a full rolling boil and steep for 3 to 5 minutes.
Keep this guide handy by bookmarking this page. That way it will always be available when you are brewing tea. It is also a good idea to invest in a good tea thermometer to help out.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I usually brew a cup of loose tea to go in the morning. Since then a few people have asked me to suggest the perfect loose tea to go cup and here are a few that I have found.
This Chocolate Tea Thermos is perfect for making loose tea on the go. It has a built in tea infuser that can be removed when the tea is done steeping. It is double walled to help keep your tea hot or cold, whichever you prefer. It is sized to fit in most car cup holders, making it perfect for taking with you on errands or your morning commute.
There is also a great travel Tea Press too. You lift the plunger, place your loose tea inside, along with hot water and let it steep. Once it is done, you just push the plunger down, which contains all of the tea leaves on the bottom. This is great for traveling because you don't need to worry about finding a place to put a tea infuser with the used leaves when the steeping is done.
If you want to go for pure beauty along with functionality, there is also this wonderful tea to go cup. It holds 16 ounces of tea and comes with a built in tea strainer. It is also a great mug to steep flowering teas in too. Just place the tea in the bottom, add hot water, and watch it unfold.
Please let us know if you are looking for something specific. We are happy to help you find the perfect loose tea to go cup or anything else related to tea. Just use the contact form or leave a comment below.
I recently placed my first order with Teavana online. We have a local store, but they were offering a free 2 oz. tea sample with a purchase on Black Friday. I'm always wanting to try new teas and you can't beat free tea.
I am very impressed with their shipping and how everything was packaged. I placed my order at 10:30 at night on Friday and received notice that my order has shipped on Saturday. I received my order Wednesday. That is fast. I often hesitate to order from large companies because shipping can be so slow.
Speaking of free, Teavana is offering free shipping starting Monday 12/7/2009 and running through Wednesday 12/9/2009. Take advantage of this great deal just in time for Holiday gift shopping and restocking your tea cabinet.
I was shopping the other day at Target and spotted this in the tea row.
I'm not sure how long Lipton Loose Tea has been available, but I'm not sure I have ever seen it at the store before. I'm always on the lookout for different teas to try. I didn't get any but may try it in the summer. I do enjoy iced tea brewed from Lipton on occasion and this may be a better alternative.