Another Successful Tasting Event at Spring Street Cafe

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Our second Hē Chá Tea tasting event at Spring Street Cafe in Zelienople, Pennsylvania was a great success! This event had even more attendees than our first event, and the level of energy and enthusiasm from this round of guests was slightly higher, as well.

Here are a few of the photos from the event.

The Tea Journeyman Speaks to Guests

The Tea Journeyman Speaks to Guests

One table of guests attending the tasting event.

One table of guests attending the tasting event.

The second table of guests attending the event.

The second table of guests attending the event.

The six He Cha Tea products lined up for introduction.

The six He Cha Tea products lined up for introduction.

Three pots of freshly prepared He Cha Tea.

Three pots of freshly prepared He Cha Tea.

A view of the event from the front of the room.

A view of the event from the front of the room.

A shot of the display plates holding the dry leaves and infused leaves for each tea.

A shot of the display plates holding the dry leaves and infused leaves for each tea.

The Tea Journeyman answering guests questions.

The Tea Journeyman answering guests questions.

If we had to choose one tea that got the best overall response from the guests, it would definitely be our Traditional Masala Chai! The Earl Grey Prime also received great feedback. As usual, every tea was at the top of someone’s list. It is always interested to see which teas come out on top at the end of these events, and it always seems that each event has a different top tea. That’s great news to us!

Hē Chá Tea would once again like to thank the owners and staff of Spring Street Cafe for giving us the opportunity to spread the love of tea with so many people. We have a third event being planned at Spring Street Cafe, and we are aiming for the second or fourth week in April. Once the date is confirmed, we will post it here and on social media.

In the meantime, please take a moment to stop by the Spring Street Cafe. It is a few steps off from Route 19 North in Zelienople, Pennsylvania. Not only do they serve all six Hē Chá Tea products, but their food, baked goods, and coffee drinks are all phenomenal. On top of that, it is owned and operated by great people. Support a local business, and be rewarded with great tasting food and beverages. Sounds like a winning combination to us! Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tea Spotlight: Mount Ali Milk Oolong

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The focus of today’s Hē Chá Tea Spotlight segment is our Mount Ali Milk Oolong Tea.

Mount Ali Milk Oolong 1 Pound Canister

Mount Ali Milk Oolong 1 Pound Canister

We at Hē Chá Tea are very proud of our Mount Ali Milk Oolong tea. It is the only tea that we currently offer that is pure, unflavored, unscented, unblended tea leaves. This simple fact also makes our Mount Ali Milk Oolong different than many other milk oolongs available in the U.S. Many milk oolongs are flavored, giving them a buttered popcorn scent, and a strong buttery taste. The problem with this is that the tea leaves used are usually of lower quality and most times do not even come from the type of tea bush that traditional milk oolongs originated from (more on that below). The result is a milk oolong by name only. A true milk oolong does not need flavoring to give it a milky, creamy smell and taste.

What is a “true” milk oolong, then? A true milk oolong comes from a specific cultivar of tea bushes that was originally developed in Taiwan by the Taiwan Tea Experiment Stations back in the 1980s. That cultivar is named Jin Xuan (or Chin Xuan). The technical number given to it by the Taiwan Tea Experiment Station is TTES #12. A true Jin Xuan milk oolong has naturally occurring chemical compounds, called lactones, which give it a naturally milky, creamy smell, as well as a buttery texture to the tea liquid. Thus, a true milk oolong does not need the flavoring. It tastes and feels unique and enjoyable all by itself.

Our Mount Ali Milk Oolong is just that, a true Jin Xuan milk oolong! We source our Jin Xuan milk oolong tea from Mei Shan Township, in Chiayi County, Taiwan. Grown in the Ali Mountains (Alishan) at an altitude of about 3,900 feet above sea level (1,300 meters), our Mount Ali Milk Oolong is considered a high mountain oolong tea. Photo shown below of a tea plantation in the Alishan region is courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

Tea Plantation in Ali Mountains

Tea Plantation in Ali Mountains

Upon opening a canister of our Mount Ali Milk Oolong, you will notice the unique scent of milk or cream. Some additional smelling will unveil scents of brown sugar, molasses, and a light floral touch. The dry leaves are in the semi-ball shape, which is typical of oolong teas from Taiwan. These dry leaves are hand-plucked, and masterfully processed to produce such a shape and smell.

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Dry Leaves

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Dry Leaves

We suggest that our Mount Ali Milk Oolong be brewed using the following parameters. Use one teaspoon (about three grams) of dry tea leaves for every eight ounces (225 ml) of water to be used in your pot or mug. For example, if you have a large pot that will hold thirty-two ounces (950 ml) of water, then you will want to use four teaspoons (about 12 grams) of dry tea leaves. Bring the water to a boil, then remove the kettle from the heat source. Allow the water to cool for a minute to a temperature of about 195°F (90°C). Pour the hot water on the tea leaves, and allow the leaves to steep for 1:30 minutes, then remove the leaves from water using a mesh colander, or any type of straining device. Please note that these tea leaves may be reused at least three to four times over a twenty-four hour period.

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Liquor

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Liquor

Once the tea leaves have been strained from the liquid, you will notice a bright, pale greenish-yellow liquor. The liquor is perfectly clear and transparent. The aroma consists of milk or cream, light orchids, and light brown sugar scents. It is a delicate and pleasant aroma. As the tea liquor touches the lips and tongue, you will notice the milky, velvety texture, which is unique to Jin Xuan oolong tea. This tea has a medium body. The taste consists of a floral (orchid) note, with light notes of cream, brown sugar, and very light cooked green vegetable. The liquor feels as though it coats the tongue and throat as it is swallowed, finishing with a strong floral essence being left on the breath.

NOTE: A strong cooked vegetable taste may occur if the water is too hot, or the tea has been steeping for too long. For the best taste and aroma, pay close attention to the water temperature and time.

For a full review of the Mount Ali Milk Oolong by the Tea Journeyman, please click here.

The taste balances and evolves nicely with the second, third, and fourth infusions. You will notice that some tastes seem to strengthen, while others weaken, giving each infusion its own unique character. The one sensation that will remain through all infusions is the lasting floral essence. After three or four infusions, some of the leaves in your pot will look like those shown below.

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Infused Leaves

Mount Ali Milk Oolong Infused Leaves

Yes, these large, unbroken leaves that have the stem fully intact were once those relatively small semi-ball shapes. What is unique about oolong teas from Taiwan is the plucking standard that the farmers use. You will find many stems that have three or four leaves attached to it. This plucking standard is rare to come across outside of Taiwan. The Jin Xuan bush produces leaves that are both long and broad, as you will easily notice. It’s teas like this Mount Ali Milk Oolong that can truly be eye-opening in terms of quality when compared to tea in teabags. If you have some of our Jasmine Pearls tea around, brew a cup for a few infusions, then compare the wet leaves to the Mount Ali Milk Oolong. You will see the difference between the standard Chinese pluck (one bud and two leaves) and the standard Taiwan oolong pluck (three to four leaves).

Currently, our Mount Ali Milk Oolong tea is available in one ounce twist top canisters, and being served at reputable coffee shops, bakeries, and other businesses in and around Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. You may also find this product on Amazon. We will soon be offering four ounce retail packets, also. Check back often, or simply subscribe to the Hē Chá Tea blog, for up-to-date information regarding our products, locations, upcoming events, and other news.

Mount Ali Milk Oolong 1 Ounce Canister

Mount Ali Milk Oolong 1 Ounce Canister

Thank you for taking your time to learn about our Mount Ali Milk Oolong Tea. If you have any questions regarding this product, please leave a comment, or contact Hē Chá Tea. Please do not forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. While you are there, follow our Certified Tea Specialist, the Tea Journeyman (http://www.teajourneyman.com). Cheers!

Tea Spotlight: Traditional Masala Chai

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The focus of todays Hē Chá Tea Spotlight segment is our Traditional Masala Chai Black Tea.

Traditional Masala Chai Dry Leaves

Traditional Masala Chai Dry Leaves

Our Traditional Masala Chai is true to it’s name, traditional. How do we know that it’s a traditional recipe? We import this blended tea directly from Assam, India. Our source in India purchases the spices from neighboring communities and farmers. The spices are then hand-cut, and hand-blended with the famously robust black teas from the Assam district. Since the spices are purchased fresh, and much of the processing of this blend is done by hand, there is only a limited supply of this tea for export. Hē Chá Tea is very proud to be able to offer this product, and truly appreciate the relationship that we have began to build with our source in India.

This Traditional Masala Chai blend has won several awards in China and the U.K., and it is gaining international attention. In addition to these facts, this blend is gaining recognition using pure, unflavored Assam black tea leaves. There is no flavoring added to the tea. This product is pure orthodox black tea, hand-blended with green cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaves, ginger root, and cloves. The use of pure black tea and fresh, all natural spices provides a high quality infusion (liquor) that is easy to see in the cup (See photo below).

In the interest of indulging our more information hungry readers, Hē Chá Tea is happy to provide the names of the estates in the Assam district of India where our orthodox black tea is sourced from. Our black tea is from the second flush harvests from the Methoni, Lattakoojan, Sewpur, Khagorijan, Halmari, and Hattialli Estates. The black tea used in this blend is 100% orthodox method tea! There is no CTC tea used whatsoever. The use of orthodox leaves allows for multiple infusions of the same leaves. Not familiar with the Assam district? See the photo below, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Map of India, Assam District Highlighted (Wikimedia Commons)

Map of India, Assam District Highlighted (Wikimedia Commons)

Upon opening a container of our Traditional Masala Chai, you will notice the long orthodox tea leaves and the large pieces of ginger root, bay leaves, and green cardamom. The invigorating aroma of these spices, along with the cloves and cinnamon, is sure to spark your senses. We are confident that you will also feel the freshness of the spices, and the clean, unflavored smell of tea. Again, one of our focuses at Hē Chá Tea is to provide products that are as clean, pure, and natural as possible, with no flavoring oils added. Of course, this is not always possible, as some teas require these flavoring oils (i.e. Earl Grey). We do not feel that a Traditional Masala Chai should be artificially flavored, and so we are proud to offer this pure blend.

We suggest that our Traditional Masala Chai be brewed using the following parameters. Use one teaspoon (about three grams) of dry tea leaves for every eight ounces (225 ml) of water to be used in your pot or mug. For example, if you have a large pot that will hold thirty-two ounces (950 ml) of water, then you will want to use four teaspoons (about 12 grams) of dry tea leaves. Bring the water to a boil, then remove the kettle from the heat source. Pour the hot water on the tea leaves, and allow the leaves to steep for three to four minutes, then remove the leaves from water using a mesh colander, or any type of straining device. For a more brisk, full bodied taste, steep the tea leaves for up to five minutes. Finally, please note that these tea leaves may be reused at least two times over a twenty-four hour period.

Traditional Masala Chai in the cup.

Traditional Masala Chai in the cup.

The first thing you will notice about our Traditional Masala Chai is the glowing reddish-amber color of the liquor. It is quite clean and transparent, forgiving some grains of cinnamon that squeeze through most filters, indicating purity and the lack of flavoring oils. The aroma of the liquor is very nicely balanced and layered, as each ingredient can be felt individually, and yet dance perfectly together. It is powerful, yet not even close to overwhelming. The liquor is full-bodied, characteristic of Assam black teas, and has a smooth, well-rounded texture. The spices are masterfully blended in perfect proportion to one another, creating a clean and balanced taste, which is difficult to find in most chai products, again the result of using fresh spices and unflavored tea. The Assam orthodox black tea compliments the spicy tastes with a robust, malty sweet taste. As the liquid rolls over your tongue, you will enjoy each layer of taste.

It is our sincere hope that you will enjoy our Traditional Masala Chai in it’s most basic form. However, if you like a creamy, sweet, and spicy beverage during the cold winter months, our Traditional Masala Chai is perfect as a base tea in a Chai Latte! Rather than us giving a specific recipe, finding one that perfectly matches your preferences is as simple as typing “Chai Latte Recipe” into a search engine. There are many different recipes out there, so experiment with a few to find your match.

Currently, our Traditional Masala Chai black tea is available in one ounce twist top canisters, and being served at reputable coffee shops, bakeries, and other businesses in and around Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. You may also find this product on Amazon. We will soon be offering four ounce retail packets, also. Check back often, or simply subscribe to the Hē Chá Tea blog, for up-to-date information regarding our products, locations, upcoming events, and other news.

Traditional Masala Chai 1 Ounce Can

Traditional Masala Chai 1 Ounce Can

Thank you for taking your time to learn about our Traditional Masala Chai Black Tea. If you have any questions regarding this product, please leave a comment, or contact Hē Chá Tea. Please do not forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. While you are there, follow our Certified Tea Specialist, the Tea Journeyman (http://www.teajourneyman.com). Cheers!

Tea Spotlight: Earl Grey Prime

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Today’s Hē Chá Tea Spotlight focuses on our truly unique Earl Grey Prime black tea.

Earl Grey Prime 1 Pound Canister

Earl Grey Prime 1 Pound Canister

Why do we say that our Earl Grey Prime is truly unique? We say that because Hē Chá Tea is the only brand in the United States that offers this specific blend! We are the first, and at the time of this post, only, brand in the United States to import directly from the specific tea factory located in the famous Uva region of Sri Lanka. After much time spent sampling this factory’s teas, blending various flavors of teas, and sampling again, we finally developed a perfect combination. So, when we say that this Earl Grey product is unique to Hē Chá Tea, we mean it! You will not find this exact single origin tea and blend anywhere else in the United States!

We have established the technical reasons as to why our Earl Grey Prime is truly unique, but let’s turn our focus on the physical properties of this phenomenal tea. Our Earl Grey Prime starts off with the traditional citrus (bergamot) oil flavored black tea that made Earl Grey styles of tea famous in the first place. After all, it would not be an Earl Grey tea without that ingredient! Then, we perfectly balance the citrus flavor and the naturally brisk taste of Uva black tea with vanilla flavored black tea. To add another level of natural flavor, pieces of vanilla bean and citrus peel are also included in the blend. For an aesthetic upgrade, yellow sunflower and blue cornflower petals are also added.

Earl Grey Prime Dry Leaves

Earl Grey Prime Dry Leaves

The mesmerizing aroma of our masterfully blended citrus and vanilla teas will spark your attraction the moment that it reaches your nose. Then, as you begin to scoop the tea leaves into your pot, you will realize that tea can be both delicious and beautiful, as the fresh dark colored tea leaves contrast perfectly with the bright yellow and majestic blue colors of the flower petals.

We suggest that our Earl Grey Prime be brewed using the following parameters. Use one teaspoon (about three grams) of dry tea leaves for every eight ounces (225 ml) of water to be used in your pot or mug. For example, if you have a large pot that will hold thirty-two ounces (950 ml) of water, then you will want to use four teaspoons (about 12 grams) of dry tea leaves. Bring the water to a boil, then remove the kettle from the heat source. Pour the hot water on the tea leaves, and allow the leaves to steep for one and a half to two minutes, then remove the leaves from water using a mesh colander, or any type of straining device. For a more brisk, full bodied taste, steep the tea leaves for up to three minutes. Finally, please note that these tea leaves may be reused at least two times over a twenty-four hour period. The photo below shows how your Earl Grey Prime tea liquor will appear.

Earl Grey Prime Liquor

Earl Grey Prime Liquor

Notice the bright orange-red color of the liquor. This bright and lively color is specific to the mid altitude grown black teas of Sri Lanka. The aroma and taste of the liquor is citrusy, sweet with vanilla, and has an energizing effect. The liquor is medium to full bodied (depending on steep time), and leaves a brisk sensation in the mouth. The brisk character of this tea, like the bright color, is unique to mid grown Sri Lankan (Ceylon) black teas. This briskness compliments the citrus flavor quite well, and is a perfect contrast to the sweetness of the vanilla. One look, one smell, and one sip of our Earl Grey tea, and you will understand why we call it Prime!

Since introducing our Earl Grey Prime and serving it at our tasting events, we have received overwhelmingly positive responses to it. The most common statements have been expressions of surprise that our high quality loose leaf Earl Grey tea can taste so much better than teabag varieties. Other statements have touched on the bright color of the liquor. With the popularity of Earl Grey styles of tea among U.S. tea consumers, we knew that people would like our Earl Grey Prime, but even we have been surprised by the high level of enthusiasm that people have shown for this tea. We know we have something special, and it seems that those who have tried our Earl Grey Prime now agree with that statement.

Earl Grey Prime 1 Ounce Tin

Earl Grey Prime 1 Ounce Tin

Currently, our Earl Grey Prime black tea is available in one ounce twist top canisters, and being served at reputable coffee shops, bakeries, and other businesses in and around Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. You may also find this product on Amazon. We will soon be offering four ounce retail packets, also. Check back often, or simply subscribe to the Hē Chá Tea blog, for up-to-date information regarding our products, locations, upcoming events, and other news.

Thank you for taking your time to learn about our Earl Grey Prime Black Tea. If you have any questions regarding this product, please leave a comment, or contact Hē Chá Tea. Please do not forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. While you are there, follow our Certified Tea Specialist, the Tea Journeyman (http://www.teajourneyman.com). Cheers!

Hoji Cha Smoky Roast from Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms

The Hē Chá Tea founder, the Tea Journeyman, has a new review available on the Hoji Cha Smoky Roast from Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms. Read it here.

Tea Journeyman's Tea Reviews and Blog

Now the samples are flowing in from all over Asia again. As I perused the thirty-plus samples that sit on my table, I chose the Hoji Cha Smoky Roast from Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms. Why? My first tea review was on a hoji cha basic roast, and I truly enjoyed the slightly woodsy and smoky taste of that. While researching that tea as I reviewed it, I found the other varieties of roasts available, and saw the smoky roast. I was immediately interested in trying one. Unfortunately, that desire got brushed to the side as hundreds of samples poured in to my office. Now, some of the prior samples have been finished, and the next round has arrived. All hoji cha varieties from Kyoto Obubu were included, and there is no question as to which option I am choosing first.

I would like to point something out before I get…

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Second Tea Tasting Event Success!

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Our second tea tasting event took place on Sunday, December 1st at the Spring Street Cafe in Zelienople, Pennsylvania, and we are quite pleased with the outcome. Despite the busy holiday weekend, at least twenty guests attended. In addition, the people that got held up traveling, or otherwise could not attend this event, requested that a second event be scheduled at Spring Street Cafe, and so it has! The sign up sheet is filling up quickly already.

The guests were provided with some basic to intermediate levels of information on tea, focusing mostly on the products offered by Hē Chá Tea. Guests had the opportunity to learn about the features of dry tea leaves that should be observed to determine the level of quality, as well as the significant features of the infused tea leaves, as the leaves were passed around the room. Guests were also taught how the color and appearance of the tea liquor indicates quality.

Again, there seemed to be a nearly perfect distribution of preference for each of the Hē Chá Tea products. Guests were most vocal about their excitement over the Earl Grey Prime and Traditional Masala Chai products. As our two most recent upgrades in the product line, replacing our original Earl Grey and Chai blends, we were very pleased to hear the guests’ positive words and reactions to these two teas. Many of the guests were amazed by the difference they tasted in the Earl Grey Prime compared to the other Earl Grey products, both bagged and loose, that they had prior experience with. As the first brand in the U.S. to import tea directly from this particular tea producer in Sri Lanka, we understand why our Earl Grey Prime is a special product, and it appears that the guests at this event understand that as well. The clean and natural, yet spicy, tastes of our new Traditional Masala Chai also put smiles on numerous faces.

The two guests, one male and one female, who offered their opinions on how the teas ranked, had completely opposite rankings! One had the Mount Ali Milk Oolong as their favorite, with the Jasmine Pearls being last. The other guest had the Jasmine Pearls as the favorite, with the oolong being last. One guest bought an entire pound of the Taste of Paradise Fruit Tisane. At the end of the event, when the remaining inventory of one ounce sample tins was counted, the Moroccan Mint Green Tea ended up having the least tins remaining, meaning that was the big seller after the event!

Literally speaking, every single tea was praised by our guests! When asked to be honest and provide negative feedback, there was but one semi-negative comment. That particular guest said simply that the fruit tisane would taste great as an iced beverage, but they did not care for it hot. Now that is one negative that is easy to turn into a positive.

As the event concluded, and our host, Kevin Craig, the Tea Journeyman, spoke with guests as they exited the room, the excitement and support of the guests was both a humbling and motivating experience.

The conclusion to be made from this event is that people will be excited when they are introduced to high quality loose leaf teas! Many people think that tea is tea, whether in a tea bag or loose. We think our guests got a delicious taste of the truth, that high quality loose leaf tea has no equal.

We invite all of you to join in on one of our future tea tasting events, and give us a chance to open your eyes to the tasteful and pleasing world of loose leaf tea. At the moment, our next tasting event is scheduled for Sunday, January 12th of 2014 from 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM at the Spring Street Cafe. There is a possibility of an earlier tasting being in the works, and we will make that announcement when the date has been finalized.

In the meantime, stop by the Spring Street Cafe in Zelienople, Pennsylvania. It is right off of Route 19 North. The sandwiches are phenomenal, as well as the cookies and other baked goods. Whichever fare you decide to try, there will be a Hē Chá Tea product that will compliment your meal perfectly.

Thank you for taking your time to read this post, and we hope to see you and your friends and family at a Hē Chá Tea tasting event in the future. Cheers!

 

Next Tea Tasting Event Scheduled – 12/01/2013

Good News! Our second tea tasting event has been scheduled!

This event will be held at the newly opened Spring Street Cafe on Sunday, December 1st, 2013 from 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM.

The Spring Street Cafe is located at 100 E Spring Street, Zelienople, Pennsylvania, 16063. Seating is limited, and according to our last report, Spring Street Cafe is expecting thirty guests.

If you see this sign, you are at the right place.

If you see this sign, you are at the right place.

We are excited to showcase our new blend of Traditional Masala Chai at this event! The new blend contains 100% orthodox Assam black tea. There is no CTC (Crush Tear Curl) tea, and no flavoring added to the tea leaves. It is pure Assam black tea, hand blended with fresh Eastern spices, and imported directly from India. We just received the shipment this week! The aroma is complex and spicy, yet not overpowering. The tea liquor is a lively orange-red color. The taste is very nicely balanced and layered, with a clean and invigorating texture. This is truly a Masala Chai that can be enjoyed with or without milk. We will be replacing our current Masala Chai product with this new blend once the supply of the current product is exhausted. We are happy to continue improving the quality of our products, and dedicated to providing unique, delicious, and true specialty grade teas and tisanes.

If you would like to attend this tea tasting event, please confirm that there will be space available for you by contacting Kevin Craig at kevin.craig@hechatea.com. Seats are filling up quickly, so reserve your spot today. We cannot wait to share our love of tea with you! Cheers!

Tea Spotlight: Moroccan Mint Green Tea

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The Hē Chá Tea Spotlight today will focus on our Moroccan Mint Green Tea.

Notice the rolled green tea leaves blended with peppermint leaves.

Notice the rolled green tea leaves blended with peppermint leaves.

Our Moroccan Mint Green Tea is a simple, yet perfectly measured blend of organic U.S. grown Peppermint leaves and organic Chinese Gunpowder Green Tea. The green tea is imported from the Jiangxi Province of southeast China. There is no flavoring or scenting of the tea leaves, aside from any scent they may acquire after being blended with peppermint leaves. This is a clean, natural, organic blend.

Our Moroccan Mint Green Tea provides a truly refreshing experience. The experience begins with the scent of fresh peppermint dancing with the lightly smokey aroma of the Gunpowder green tea. As the hot water is poured over the green tea leaves, sit back and watch the rolled leaves unwind, releasing all of the attractive scents, tastes, and benefits that green tea is known for. The taste can be described in one word, Refreshing!

The Moroccan Mint 1st Infusion Liquor should look like this.

The Moroccan Mint 1st Infusion Liquor should look like this.

 

Whether this tea is being enjoyed hot on a cold winter evening, or chilled with ice on a hot summer afternoon, it is sure to satisfy your thirst and hydrate your body. Are you in doubt that this tea can be refreshing on hot days? Ask someone from the country of Morocco for their opinion. Moroccan Mint tea is served from morning to evening in Morocco, and is often the first beverage offered to guests by a host. Inside and outside of Morocco, this blend of green tea and peppermint is the most popular green tea and herb blend on the planet. Try it yourself! We are confident that you will understand why it is so popular.

We suggest that our Moroccan Mint Green Tea be brewed using water that is heated to about 175°F (80°C). Use one teaspoon (3 grams) of dry leaves for every 8 ounces (225 ml) of water in your mug or teapot. Most mugs should have two teaspoons of dry leaves used, since there is between 14 to 16 ounces (400 to 450 ml) of water held in a mug. Pour the water over the leaves, and allow to brew for one to two minutes, depending on your taste preference. Do not allow the leaves to brew in the water for more than two minutes, or else the taste may become bitter. Our Moroccan Mint Green Tea leaves can be reused at least three times in a 24 hour period. One ounce of leaves can provide up to 30 cups of great tasting tea!

Moroccan Mint Green Tea 1 Ounce Tins are Available!

Moroccan Mint Green Tea 1 Ounce Tins are Available!

For green tea to taste as it should, and not be bitter, the water temperature and infusion time are very important. If you do not have a water thermometer or an electric kettle with temperature controls, simply boil water in a standard kettle. Once the water is boiling, remove the kettle from the heat, and allow the water to cool for 3 to 4 minutes before pouring it on the tea leaves.

As with all teas, our Moroccan Mint Green Tea does contain caffeine, but not as high of a level as most black teas, and nowhere near the caffeine level of coffee. If you are caffeine sensitive, you may use this simple at home technique to remove some of the caffeine from this tea. Simply pour the hot water over the tea leaves for about twenty seconds, using just enough water to cover the leaves, then pour this first tea infusion into the sink. Much of the caffeine is withdrawn from the leaves in the first twenty seconds. Again, this technique will not pull all of the caffeine out. Then pour the hot water over the tea leaves as directed in the paragraph above. Don’t worry, there is plenty of taste in these leaves, and disposing of the first infusion will not waste the taste.

The Moroccan Mint Green Tea, and all of our six loose leaf tea choices, can be found on Amazon.com, and in coffee shops that serve our teas. Just look for our beautiful display canisters, shown below!

Our Moroccan Mint Display Canister will look great in your coffee shop, tearoom, office, or home.

Our Moroccan Mint Display Canister will look great in your coffee shop, tearoom, office, or home.

As of the date of this post, our Moroccan Mint Green Tea can be found at the following locations:

Pennie’s Bake Shop & Espresso Bar, 800 New Castle St, Butler, PA 16001

Curbside Coffeehouse, 405 Freeport Rd, Blawnox, PA 15238

Cafe Kolache, 402 3rd St, Beaver, PA 15009

Spring Street Cafe, 100 E Spring St, Zelienople, PA 16063

Mezza Luna Cafe, 649 Midland Ave, Midland, PA 15059

The Mudd House, 1724 M St NW, Washington, D.C. 20036

DeAngelis Donuts, 202 Pleasant St, Rochester, PA 15074

More locations are being added weekly. Please stop by one of the locations listed above, and sip on the Moroccan Mint Green Tea while enjoying a delicious baked good or other fare offered.

Thank you for taking your time to learn about our Moroccan Mint Green Tea. If you have any questions regarding this product, please leave a comment, or contact Hē Chá Tea. Please do not forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. While you are there, follow our Tea Specialist, the Tea Journeyman (http://www.teajourneyman.com). Cheers!

First Official Tasting Event on 11/06/2013

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We are happy to say that our first official tea tasting event was a great success! The tasting was conducted on Wednesday, November 6th of 2013, at the Beaver Falls Coffee and Tea Company in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.

The room that the tasting was conducted in was literally packed with guests, some who had to stand while enjoying the entire presentation. There was a nice distribution of age groups, with guests ranging in age from late teens to mid sixties. We also had a nearly equal mix of both men and women, with a slight edge to men. There is a tea for every taste, regardless of age or gender. The guests at this tasting proved it!

Tea Lineup and Display Front

Tea Lineup and Display Front

The tasting began with an introduction by the founder, Kevin Craig. Kevin told the Hē Chá Tea story, then elaborated on his feelings in regard to the meaning of tea. In contrast to coffee, Kevin suggested that tea is meant to be slowly prepared, slowly infused, and slowly enjoyed. Tea is intended to help calm and sharpen the mind and balance the body, not to be chugged down while rushing to work or school.

Information on sourcing, production techniques, and basic characteristics of each of our teas was then provided to the guests. Kevin asked the guests what the most basic difference between black tea and green tea is (oxidation). When none of the guests spoke up, Kevin took a bite of an apple, and placed in on a plate while the teas were prepared and served. This was intended to give guests a hands on science lesson on the chemical process of oxidation. By the end of the tasting, the apple displayed very little oxidation, but enough to get the point across.

Earl Grey Canister & Display Plate

Earl Grey Canister & Display Plate

As the teas were served, the guests were asked what they smelled and tasted, and what their opinion of each tea was. We were very satisfied with the results. Each of our six teas had different people who expressed their preference for that specific taste, in some cases expressing that it was the best tasting tea of that blend that they had ever tasted. The overall feel of the room was that everyone enjoyed what they were served. All we can say for certain is that every cup was empty! Our purpose and goal with our initial six tea products was to provide options that will satisfy as many tastes and preferences as possible, and we are happy to report that this first tasting gave us a sense of success in that purpose.

Throughout the tasting, guests were encouraged to touch and play with the dry teas provided on a sample plate. Many of the guests were surprised and interested by the large leaves, fruits, and other herbs used in the blends. We think most of the guests quickly understood the difference between what was being served at this tasting, and what they would find in their tea bags at home.

Event Room with Guests and Founder, Kevin Craig, shown on left.

Event Room with Guests and Founder, Kevin Craig, shown on left.

After the teas had all been served, the infused leaves were put on a display plate to be observed by the guests. Again, most were surprised by the size of the leaves, especially of the Mount Ali Milk Oolong and the Jasmine Pearls. Some guests even ate a few of the pieces of fruit from the infused Taste of Paradise Fruit Tisane.

This tasting event was not only fun for the guests as well as the hosts, but it was very encouraging to the founders of our new brand of teas. With no dissenting opinions (quite the opposite, in fact), and smiles on the faces of every guest as they observed and participated in the event, there could be no better result from a first tasting. All we can say now is that we cannot wait to do more of these events.

We would like to thank the owners and employees of Beaver Falls Coffee and Tea Company for hosting this event. We would also like to thank all of the guests for attending and participating. We sincerely hope that you enjoyed your experience, and we welcome your opinions and suggestions on all of our tea products, as well as suggestions on how future tasting events may be improved. If you have any comments, please email Kevin Craig at kevin.craig@hechatea.com, or kevin@teajourneyman.com.

 

Tea Spotlight: Jasmine White Tea Pearls

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The Hē Chá Tea Spotlight today will focus on our Jasmine White Tea Pearls.

Jasmine White Tea Pearls Dry Leaves

Jasmine White Tea Pearls Dry Leaves

Our Jasmine White Tea Pearls are imported directly from their origin in Fuding county, Fujian Province, China. Each pearl is a fine plucked tea leaf from the standard Da Bai Cha (Big White Tea) tea bush. The leaf is then processed similarly to green tea. The processing continues as the tea leaves are allowed to sit in the presence of fresh jasmine flowers, whose soothing scent is absorbed by the fresh tea leaves. The leaves are then individually hand rolled by highly skilled factory employees.

These white tea pearls are a true pleasure for the senses. The pleasure begins with the aromatic and relaxing scent of jasmine flowers. As the tea pearls are placed in hot water, they begin to unwind, and appear to dance in the water. With multiple infusions, these pearls will fully unfurl into their natural shape, with fully intact tea leaves and buds being the result.

Jasmine White Tea Pearls Liquor

Jasmine White Tea Pearls Liquor

The tea liquor carries the fresh jasmine aroma. The liquor is bright and transparent, with a light yellow color. The taste is delicate and floral, and the fresh jasmine begins to wash away your worries sip by sip. If you have many worries to wash away, then have no fear, for these pearls can be infused at least three times. Each infusion will provide you with the soothing tastes of jasmine and white tea. Do not be ashamed to pull out some infused leaves and observe them, once they have cooled. Appreciating the beauty of the leaves is a very important aspect of the tea experience.

The Jasmine White Tea Pearls should be steeped in water that is between 175°F to 185°F (80°C to 85°C) for two to three minutes. For a lighter and more delicate taste, brew for two minutes. The longer the leaves are steeped, the stronger the taste will be. Do not steep for longer than three minutes, or the tea may become bitter. Be careful not to use too hot of water, or the delicate leaves may be damaged, and the taste be negatively impacted. Simply bring fresh water to a boil, remove the kettle from the heat source, then allow it to sit for three to four minutes before pouring the water over the tea pearls.

As with all teas, the Jasmine White Tea Pearls do contain caffeine, but not as high of a level as most black teas, and nowhere near the caffeine level of coffee. If you are caffeine sensitive, you may use this simple at home technique to remove some of the caffeine from this tea. Simply pour the hot water over the tea pearls for about twenty seconds, using just enough water to cover the pearls, then pour this first tea infusion into the sink. Much of the caffeine is withdrawn from the leaves in the first twenty seconds. Again, this technique will not pull all of the caffeine out. Then pour the hot water over the tea pearls as directed in the paragraph above. Don’t worry, there is plenty of taste in these leaves, and disposing of the first infusion will not waste the taste.

The Jasmine White Tea Pearls, and all of our six loose leaf tea choices, can be found on Amazon.com, and in coffee shops that serve our teas. As of the date of this post, the Jasmine White Tea Pearls can be found at the following locations:

Pennie’s Bake Shop & Espresso Bar, 800 New Castle St, Butler, PA 16001

Curbside Coffeehouse, 405 Freeport Rd, Blawnox, PA 15238

Cafe Kolache, 402 3rd St, Beaver, PA 15009

Spring Street Cafe, 100 E Spring St, Zelienople, PA 16063

Mezza Luna Cafe, 649 Midland Ave, Midland, PA 15059

The Mudd House, 1724 M St NW, Washington, D.C. 20036

DeAngelis Donuts, 202 Pleasant St, Rochester, PA 15074

More locations will be posted as they receive delivery of our teas. Please stop by one of the locations listed above, and sip on the Jasmine White Tea Pearls while enjoying a delicious baked good or other fare offered.

Thank you for taking your time to learn about our Jasmine White Tea Pearls. If you have any questions regarding this product, please leave a comment, or contact Hē Chá Tea. Cheers!