Since I’m not a coffee drinker, and the occasional cup of coffee I have had hasn’t had an agreeable effect on me, I tend to think that I can’t have any form of caffeine and therefore stick to only herbal teas. I recently came across an amazing tea company called TeaCha, however, which has opened my eyes to the fact that there are other teas out there suitable for me that aren’t just peppermint or chamomile.
If ever I meet up with anyone for a “coffee,” for me that generally means ordering a cup of herbal “tea” that costs more than it would to buy an entire box of teabags at the supermarket. At home, our tea cupboard is stocked with pretty much only peppermint or chamomile, so the thought of paying for one of these in a coffee shop always leaves a slightly bitter taste. Over the past week or so, I have been trying all kinds of different teas I never even knew existed, thanks to TeaCha’s “Tea Journey” package.
TeaCha was founded by a tea aficionado called Chris Tan. After working in the finance industry in both London and New York, Chris decided to leave the corporate world and pursue his love of tea that he had been nuturing since he embarked on an exploration tour of the world in 2003. For over a decade, Chris has been developing this understanding of teas from all over the world, learning their natural health benefits, antioxidants and caffeine content. Since starting the company, Chris and his team have tried more than 1,300 teas, before choosing 65 that they believe best represent the varieties from all over the world.
Through TeaCha, Chris aims to help other people understand tea better and experience what he himself experienced, but with less work involved. Chris believes that everyone has their own perfect cup of tea for every occasion, and through a little exploration, people will be able to find this perfect cup.
Each different tea comes with its own little information card, which tells you the tea family, tea type, its antioxidant index, caffeine index, as well as the recommended preparation and brewing time. Overleaf, you’ll see a little history about that type of tea – where it’s from, why TeaCha loves it, and why it’s good for you. So every time you brew a cup of tea, you’re also getting a little education – hence the name of the company!
On my “Tea Journey,” I have discovered that I really like Darjeeling tea, even though it apparently has a high caffeine index. Another favourite is the Four Seasons Oolong, which I enjoyed with a dash of milk and honey.
I normally shy away from any kind of mint tea that is prefixed with the word “Moroccan,” since this usually means it is caffeinated. TeaCha’s Moroccan Ruby Mint, however, is unique in that it isn’t blended with any tea leaves, therefore making it a delicious, fruity, caffeine-free brew.
The way TeaCha works is a little different to other tea companies. The idea is that you sign up to a “tea tasting subscription.” Each month features a specific theme and the TeaCha team select five seasonal teas from around the world. You’ll receive a cute little box with two of each of these teas, plus of course their accompanying information cards.
Tea subscription plans start at $165. You can sign up for one, three, five or 13 months, or even buy a tea subscription for a friend. Of course if there is one particular tea that you like, you can buy a big bag of loose leaf tea, or a packet of tea bags, but I’d recommend stepping outside of your usual comfort zone of two or three “safe” teas and try the subscription. I love a good eating or drinking experience that makes me feel a little wiser!
TeaCha is offering an exclusive 20% discount on online orders to readers of The Dim Sum Diaries between now and 30th April 2015. Visit TeaCha’s website, enter the code “DIMSUM” at the checkout and click “update total” to apply the discount. Enjoy!