Just riding back from historic Naples Florida where my mother and I had lunch at Brambles English Tea Room, while Rowan and grandpa went to the park. The owners were Brits and our waitress Jasmine had a lovely accent from I’m not sure where. It was Victorian in decor, pink floral wallpaper and floral china tea cups and small pots. They served almost exclusively Taylor’s of Harrogate (a brand I had heard mentioned the opening weekend of our Teavana store by a busy body tea anglophile customer who just wanted to name drop an talk about who was drinking what) with the exception of a few house blends. My mom had their take on a Royal Wedding Tea with strawberries, kiwi and mango with a salmon salad I had this Lapsang Souchong with my Cornish Pasty which were a fine paring. The tea was medium on the smoke, slightly sweet and quite smooth. It was a bag but whatever. I asked what kind of oolong and she just tried to explain what an oolong was to me but in doing so described it as green and mild so that answered my question. I picked up an over the cup strainer to replace my one that was blackening, this one has a stainless steel mesh body and its own drip base so that’s fabulous. I also picked the husband up some Japanese Cherry Tea just because and treated my mom to some Royal Wedding Tea for at home. I accidentally tipped 20% on the subtotal (three items from the gift shop on top of the meal) tipping the final total to $81, oh well hopefully Jasmine enjoy, she taught is how to pronounce pasty. Lovely afternoon.

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Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.


Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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