Settle. A #teaclub Day Out.

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“I think we’re in Settle.” B

You can’t beat a grand day out in Yorkshire. With clear skies and beltin’ weather, the TeaClub boys B & M went for a day out to Settle. It’s probably our favourite place in Yorkshire. Countless places for good tea, the joint-best fish & chip shop and Booths Supermarket for a spot of tea aisle browsing.

Benn, dressed in his Lumberjack shirt, turned up at the station. Michael, dressed in his floral blue shirt and red trousers, turned up at the station. It was the ingredients for the perfect storm. The views were breathtaking once we left the urban jungle of Keighley and market town of Skipton. Fields upon fields of farmland, dry stone walling, rolling hills and sheep. We discussed what kind of places we would like to visit and after some careful planning we came to the conclusion that we’d like to visit places that serve tea.

Settle Station is gloriously well looked after and could easily feature at the Chelsea Flower Show if it was mobile enough to move a few hundred mile down south.

Our first point of call was the Lay of the Land Garden Centre cafe (above). It’s got everything you need for an English country garden and has a pretty cafe at the back with outdoor seating. We should have taken advantage of this but thought the seating outside were products on sale! Still, the interior is equally as comfortable and pleasant. The tea is thirst class thanks to the guys at Brew Tea Co. Two pots of English Breakfast were guzzled down as we admired the range of tea and showed some appreciation for the Casa Espresso Coffee on offer too as they’re out Twitter buddies.

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The Fisherman, Settle.

It was a little early in the day for fish & chips and we didn’t want to look like a couple of crazed concert goers waiting for the doors to open for a Chas n’ Dave gig. We took a romantic stroll around Giggleswick and agreed that other than fine views, there wasn’t much in the way of tea. Fish n’ Chips it was then and where better to enjoy it than at The Fisherman. With mushy peas and a pot of tea on the side, we made noises of appreciation such as “ahhh” and “mmm“. These noises carried on until it’s final crescendo of “that were grand were that“. We discussed our favourite Yorkshire views. Michael said it had to be the Ribblehead Viaduct. Benn said the tea aisle at Booths. Patience Benn. Patience.

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M

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View of Settle & Giggleswick from up a hill.

Tea – Sorted. Fish & Chips – Sorted. Time for a view. We hiked up the cobbled hill behind the market square and into the open fields of Settle. We realised that our footwear wasn’t the best and we can only apologise to Kate Bush for not getting up the hill quicker than we did. But oh my days the views! Incredible. Maybe the Ribblehead Viaduct has stiff competition? We stayed for a good 20 minutes to soak it in. It was all downhill from there but only in a literal sense.

Booths Supermarket is probably our favourite supermarket out of them all. Even though most are in Lancashire, you do get a good few in Yorkshire & Cumbria. The store in Settle is a great place for great Bread, fresh fruit, a diverse range of beers and of course tea. Michael picked up a bag of loose leaf All Day Tea. A blend of African teas. Splendid.

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B

The day out was coming to a close. A nice walk around the grounds of The Water Tower and a chat with its owner concluded our day in style. It really is an iconic building and well worth the visit if the invite is there to come explore the grounds. Check the gate before entering.

Tea. Fish & Chips. Views. Booths. Now that’s a proper TeaClub day out.

@Lay_of_the_Land

@BoothsCountry

Visit Settle – The Fisherman

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New Mills & Edale

‘It’s right up there with places on the Settle-Carlisle line for me. To take it all in, I needed a brew and some cake’

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The face of a man who’s having a cracking day out in the North.

This summer I have been out and about, exploring some old favourites and discovering new ones. Thanks to Northern Rail or the local Transdev bus company, I set off in search of tea and a view. If there’s a deli or nice market on the way, I’ll stop off there too.

On the 31st August I packed my bag (iPaper, banana and bottle of water) and set off for the historical New Mills and scenic wonderland that is Edale. If memory serves me well, I believe this was my first outing in the Peak District.

I started off by selling my soul to the devil and ordering a flat white from a station coffee shop beginning with S. I realised that my 6 hours sleep and 6am alarm had left me somewhat tired, even when I reached Sheffield. I hope you’ll forgive me. You will forgive me, right?

From there on in I simply drank tea. The ride out of Sheffield was spectacular once you got through Totley Tunnel. That was 3 miles of noise and wind. If I wanted that for entertainment, I’d have eaten a curry. The other side was worth the wait though. Nothing but scenic splendour. Village after village of stone built houses and gurt lush green field.

I got off at New Mills and hiked up a road that lead me to the shops. I was gasping for a brew and a late breakfast. Llamedo’s on Market Street was my point of call. It’s a no frills cafe that offers tea by the mug and superb fry ups. I went for the sausage and egg muffin, which was one of the best I’d ever had. The tea was disappointing though. Far too milky. Still, well worth a visit for the food alone.

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Delicious food. Average tea. Terrible table cloth.

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The Torrs Riverside Park.

I descended down old steps into the valley where I was greeted by the Millennium Walkway and Sett Valley Trail. Incredible sights. You can clearly see evidence of how the ice age has influenced the mill towns history. You can even see evidence of restoration and engineering thanks to the Torrs Riverside Park and Millennium Walkway respectively. A series of paths, historical points of interest and more transportation lines than any other town in the UK. Well, I’m guessing that’s true. It was spectacular to see the different layers of transportation systems run through the place.

With the rain coming down, I headed for the station. I had a 30 minute wait and passed the time with my newspaper. A Manchester bound train pulled up and I was very tempted to jump on-board and head to Marple. However, I stuck to my guns and opted for Edale.

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A very nice cup of tea and slice of cake in Edale. Even the milk jug poured well.

I’m bloody glad I did too. Wow! Although the sun helped, I think Edale has to be one of the most special landscapes in all of Britain. It’s right up there with places on the Settle-Carlisle line for me. To take it all in, I needed a brew and some cake (pronounced cake and not cake like some folk pronounce it as). The Penny Pot Cafe is right next to the station and serves a very good pot of tea and cake. Honey, Lemon and Lavender I believe was my cake of choice. Sitting outside, I was able to take it all in. Having no phone signal meant the tweets about it had to wait. More time to appreciate where I was.

A sign to see Barbara Booth caught my eye. I hadn’t heard of a Barbara Booth but she seemed to be a popular attraction judging by the signposts I saw. I must have walked through 10 gated fields to reach Barbara but each field got better and better in terms of views. As it turns out, Barbara Booth is Barber Booth, a tiny tiny place that features a small selection of gorgeous stone-built houses and a campsite. I could quite happily retire here. For now, I’d be best off camping here I suspect.

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Everything good about the North was in and around Edale.

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Stunning

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Breathtaking

Heading back into Edale Village via those 10 gated fields, I found myself in Edale Village where there was all the typical features of a classic British village. Pub, Shop, Cafe, School, Church. Maybe a post office? If not probably a post box. The Mooreland Centre allows you to get your bearings right before setting off for a walk, or an opportunity to recuperate after a walk. More champion views were found on the other side of the village, in particular a fantastic narrow bridge for walkers. Everything in Edale and its surrounding area was well sign posted so I thoroughly recommend it for walkers who love a good brew. Or those who love a good brew and quite like a walk. Either way, you’re guaranteed a beltin’ day out.

For more information about New Mills and Edale, visit the following links.

http://www.visitpeakdistrict.com/New-Mills-New-Mills-Town/details/?dms=3&venue=6080107

http://www.visitpeakdistrict.com/Edale-Edale/details/?dms=3&venue=6123260

 

Sumatra Gunung Dempo Estate

The summer has arrived at #teaclub HQ and we’ve been spending it drinking copious amounts of tea and banging on about how amazing Team GB are doing at the Olympics in Rio. They have done rather well haven’t they? Then my phone vibrated and displayed the pink flashing light. That means it’s a message from our newly-appointed agent Reginald Van de Hoef, who has recently moved from his native country of Holland. The message was regarding a possible tea review for Alicia Persichini of Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Co fame. Alicia was on the lookout 4 for for 4 tea bloggers to review… tea. We couldn’t help but gasp at the thought of it, so we instantly replied to declare our interest.

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Tea. Glorious Tea.

Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Co, a tea and coffee company based in the Kent & Sussex region oddly enough, have released a selection of teas for Summer 2016. Among the new released was the superb looking Sumatra Gunung Dempo Estate Black Tea. Alicia informed us it was on its way to #teaclub HQ. We then informed Alicia that it had been received at #teaclub HQ. Alicia then said thanks. We then said to Alicia ‘thanks’. We were in clear smooth-operator territory.

Inside the envelope was a packet of this Sumatra Gunung Demp Estate tea. Described as a sample size, we felt there was enough here to feed the family but decided to keep it for ourselves. They don’t appreciate good tea like we do so it’d be wasted on those who just drink P… We can’t even bring ourselves to say it. We opened the packaging to see what was inside. Bizarrely enough, a load of loose leaf tea was inside. It was a sign of good things to come.

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As Biggleswade Utd celebrated a win in the cup, we celebrated with a cup of this superb tea.

The now infamous glass kettle was put to work and we popped in a couple of level teaspoons into the frog infuser for a good mugs worth of tea. As the freshly-boiled water poured over, the frog began to spin right round baby right round. The leaves were unfurling nicely and the aroma was powerful. We knew we were in for something special.

*5 minutes later*

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The hue of the tea after 5 minutes of brewing. Something to be admired by every tea lover. 

The product description informed us that this tea was “easy to lock on to your subject for sharp, realistic results – something your smartphone just can’t match”. We were… wait… sorry, that was the description for a digital camera we were looking at earlier. The product description informed us that this tea contained “Assamese leaf” and “delicate in floral notes, with a well rounded body, a sweet maltiness and a touch of citrus“. Basically this tea has all the attributed to be your new favourite tea.

Taste wise it did not disappoint. For some reason we expected this really light and delicate black tea. Instead we got a strong breakfast tea with plenty of depth and a lovely aftertaste. In fact it didn’t taste too far off a Ceylon Lovers Leap tea. You know, the one that’s highly fragrant with citrus notes. As fans of the stronger black teas often found in India, Kenya and Sri Lanka, who knew we’d end up enjoying a tea from Indonesia just as much. We must admit we haven’t a clue what Grade 1 is for ‘Leaf Grade’ but we agree 100%. This is a top grade tea. With each sip, the taste got better and better (see scientific graph below).

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Our graph proves that this tea tastes better with every guzzle.

Speaking of finance, if you would like to buy some amazing Sumatra Gu… just some amazing tea grown in Indonesia, then it’s £2.63 for 50g of the stuff. If you want to go all out for the 125g then it’s £5.13.

The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company,
Pivington Mill, Egerton Road, Pluckley,
Ashford, Kent TN27 0PG. UK.

Tel: 01233 840265

www.tea-and-coffee.com

@kentteacoffee

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#teaclub B & M

 

Getting to Know You: Stevie Grieve

“The best thing about McDiarmid Park was the Blue Popcorn and Dotty Bars”.

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Stevie Grieve. Tea drinking ma…wait a minute…

The summer holidays. Mug of tea in hand. Time for a new webisode (that’s a word right?) or our ‘popular’ Getting to Know You series. This time we’ve gone all out sports on you. We’re privileged to have professional footballer and maturer coach/analyst Stevie Grieve. No wait, we got that the wrong way round. We’ve got amateur footballer and professional coach/analyst Stevie Grieve.

Why is he a pro? Well plenty of that is answered below. 13 years of coaching, having worked in 4 countries and proud to be the “youngest head coach in Switzerland in the AVCF 4eme Ligue in 2012″ at the ripe old age of 25. Oh and did we tell you he has done tv punditry for TenSports as a top analyst. His pre-match notes are heavily annotated. His knowledge of tactics is second to none. We think we’re pretty good at Football Manager but we feel as though we’d get our butt kicked if we played Stevie!

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Stevie has yet to confirm if his video diaries titled ‘Stevie’s Suits’ will ever see the light of day.

Now he’s off to Canada to join Burlington Soccer as Coach Development Manager. One things for sure though, he’ll be spreading the joy of good tea. Here’s 10 questions we put to him.


1. Hi Stevie. What’s 6 + 8?

It could be 68, it could be 14. Philosophically, what is the meaning of 6, or even 8? It’s a question i ask myself daily.

2. Fantastic. Clearly you’re a tea drinker and on the ball, so to speak (unless you answered that wrong in which case this interview is over you closet coffee drinker you!). Where do we find you in the world and are you drinking tea?

Im in Perth, Scotland today, but im moving to Burlington, Ontario, Canada on Tuesday. Yeah, im always drinking tea! I think i’ll have some Maple Leaf tea over there instead of my usual Scottish blend i have here.

3. We kind of already know the answer to this question but for the rest of our followers can you state what your favourite tea is?

Im a big fan of Corson vanilla tea from Mauritius. I had it on honeymoon there and wasn’t sure about it initially. It was kinda like when you have a big mouthful of Cola then before you swallow, you eat a Flump.

You know you weren’t sure if you liked it but you’ll do it again just to check.
I like it really dark, with a dribble of milk sometimes.

It tastes like sugary tea so if you’re on a diet its a good start. Its on ebay i think for about $5 for 25 bags.

4. As a man who travels between Scotland and India a fair few times, what’s best: Drinking tea in Scotland made with top quality soft Scottish water or simply drinking tea in the home of tea; India?

Oft, tough question! The water makes a huge difference, but if you offered me pure Indian tea in Scottish soft water, i’d go with that. Indian Tea is pretty much sugary milk, though.

5. Yourself and #teaclub M happen to support the same football team – St. Johnstone. Last time M was there the tea wasn’t all that bad. Where’s the best ground you’ve enjoyed a cup of tea?

We do! The best thing about McDiarmid Park was the Blue Popcorn and Dotty Bars. I dunno if they do them anymore though.

The tea was probably some cheap rubbish there and i wasn’t keen on it so i had Bovril (its rank), but i would say that i really liked the tea at the home stadium of Garhwal FC, Ambedkar Stadium in Delhi.

Proper Delhi Chai, enough sugar to get rid of the water taste but not enough to give you diabetes.

6. Having seen your tweets and some clips of you on YouTube for Ten Sports, it’s fair to say you’re passionate about the game and in particular, the analysis side of things. Did you play at any level and if not, how did you get into the media as an analyst?

I didn’t play at a high level, and certainly not anything worth mentioning. Im not even sure if some levels of professional football even count towards being able to claim you “know” the game!

I played youth football and some amateur games until i was 18, but much preferred Futsal which i played from 15-21.

Futsal suits me more than 11v11 with a tactically incompetent coach and mostly clueless team mates making me chase long balls or not playing through midfield. I’m not a 2nd ball kinda guy, which isn’t good in Scottish amateur football.

I stopped playing as i didn’t enjoy playing football, and wanted to concentrate on coaching.

I’ve been a coach for 13 years, I’ve worked in 4 countries and was the youngest head coach in Switzerland in the AVCF 4eme Ligue in 2012 at 25.

Again, I was the youngest Head Coach in India at 27 in 2014 when i coached in the I-League 2.

I got into analysis from being bored and having 6 weeks to kill between moving from Scotland to Switzerland, so i wrote some analysis for World Class Coaching which was on Sergio Busquets. From there, it was made into an e-book, then i wrote some analysis pieces, then wrote a best selling book called Coaching the 4-2-3-1, then it snowballed.

When i moved to India, i was using analysis and studying to help educate myself to educate my coaches, then after i coached Garhwal in the I-League 2, i was asked to do a 4 show trial with TenSports by RK Sreenivasan.

From the 1st show, I was comfortable with the surroundings, the presenter’s questions and felt like i deserved to be there more than most people with the analysis things i could offer and opinions on players and teams, give context etc.

4 shows turned into the end of the season, then another, then another, then my own TV show!

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Stevie likes to make notes about football games. Lots of notes. Answers on a postcard please.

7. Have you ever spilled a mug of tea in the studio?

Hahaha! Shhh… not inside but yeah, in the corridor.

Actually, the lassie from NDTV who was walking past and saw me drop it then looking guilty while trying to get a mop over it was in hysterics walking into her studio just before she had to do a live report on flooding.

The irony.

8. We’ve an idea but just how big is tea drinking in India? What are the differences compared to our tradition of having a teabag in a mug?

Everyone drinks sugary Chai, in little 50 ml cups, which is pure sugar with a fair whack of spices etc in it. Its nice i like it but with much less sugar. They’ll have the water, spices and leafs boiling with milk and sugar all day, mixing it and pouring, while we have it fresh. I suppose everyone is different but while people would ask for a  £2.50 Coffee here, they go to the Chai wallah and get 5 cups for 25p.

9. Last couple of questions now. If you could drink tea with anyone in the world, who would it be and where would this meeting take place? Kettle’s on Stevie. We’ve got chocolate digestives. Nudge nudge.

Aww man, just one? I’ll give 2. Can i? I have a large packet, and who eats a whole packet of biscuits even with a tag team partner? They’ll just go to waste so I’ll invite an extra person because a whole pack of chocolate digestives is alot for only 2 people. At least they’ll get finished.

I’d have my meeting in a tent in the highlands with Lucy Verasamy; the weather girl from ITV.

She’d know exactly when it was time to come out because she has weather reading superpowers.

A cup of tea in the rain in a tent would go down a treat. I like listening to rain.

I’d probably invite Rachel Riley aswell; you’d get battered at scrabble but at least you could play all day until you win while drinking tea. Imagine beating Rachel Riley and Lucy the weathergirl at Scrabble before going out for a game of Man Hunt in the highlands with a flask of tea?

10. A big of a challenge for you. Last year we came up with a Tea XI. 11 footballers with a tea themed name (e.g. David Teaman). Make a brew and give us your own Tea XI. We’ll compare it to ours and perhaps put it to a Twitter vote. No pressure now.

Jose Luis CHAIlavert (Paraguay GK)
 
Phillip Lahmbarrie (Nambarrie)
Nicolas OTEAmendi (Otamendi)
Paolo MalTEAni (Maldini)
 
Clarence CEYLONdorf (Seedorf)
Emmanuele PeTEALEAF (Manu Petit)
Emmanuel TETLEY (Tetteh ex Norwich)
Martyn WAGHBAKRIhorn (Waghorn)
Diego DILMAHradona (Maradona)
Olivier GirOOLONG (Giroud)
Antoine TEAzmann (Griezmann)

This is quite a strong team. Like how i like my tea. Strong.

Ed: Does it beat our completely different Tea XI?
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Chairman: Roman Assamovic.


Cheers Stevie. Best wishes to yourself and your family in Canada.

#teaclub

Piacha: Black and Cherry.

“I’m not a Cherry fan but when I opened the packet and had a whiff, I was more than up for drinking a big mug of the stuff.” – #teaclub M

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Black and Cherry. Drink it and be Cherry.

In the style of Jessie’s Diets: This week, I have been mostly drinking Piacha Tea. I don’t live in a shed but I could easily pass for him with the shaggy hair look.My fashion sense is often questionable too.

But this tea wouldn’t want to feature in the Fast Show because it deserves time to be appreciated.

Before we go any further; running from the 4th July to the 25th July, we have a very special offer for followers of the #teaclub: You can find further information here.

50% off your first Tea Envelopes Subscription purchase.

Enter #TEACLUB@PIACHA at the checkout to apply your discount.

Piacha tea are awesome. We’ve already taken our flat caps off and acknowledged their Rhubarb Rooibos Fudge Thing Tea and at the end of the month, I’ll be visiting their tea bar in Islington to get drunk on tea and catch up with Pia, founder of Piacha Teas. I’ll need to scrub up well. Tweed anyone?

I signed up to their tea envelopes subscription service and ordered two packets of tea. I’ve gone route 1 with 75g of loose leaf English Breakfast and I’ve taken a detour with the 75g loose leaf Black and Cherry. This review is about the latter.

The whole subscription process was easy-peasy. I went on the website and had a bit of a dabble about. I clicked on the Black and Cherry and chose that ‘Subscribe with savings of 10%’ option. I got me 10% off because I were subscribing. If I were daft and I weren’t subscribing, there’d be no discount of any sort. Then I tapped in me bank details and next minute the postman were here with me tea envelopes. For anyone taking us up on the 50% off offer (mentioned above), there’s a text box in the checkout process where you can enter the discount code. Oh and there’s free delivery. Cracking do is that!

I chose a superb day to enjoy my first cup of Black and Cherry tea. It was so nice outside I decided to take a photo of it on the decking with my tea frog infuser. Just look at the sunshine!

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The first thing I noticed about the Black and Cherry was that, believe it or not, it has Cherry in the title. I’m not a Cherry fan but when I opened the packet and had a whiff, I was more than up for drinking a big mug of the stuff. I also noticed some writing on my tea envelope. I recognise the three kisses (unless it was advising me that this is tea porn) and I think the writing says ‘open bar on the 25th July’. I could be wrong though. Whilst I got my magnifying glass out to decode the symbols, froggy was having a whale of a time in the mug.

With this tea I have no problem in ‘fishing for compliments’. It’s bloody superb! It’s like having a cherry coke or one of those cherry gummy sweets you get in the pick n’ mix, only it has tea in it. The whole experience was quite special and I’d even go as far as say to…. I’d even go as to say that as far…. I reckon that it would be a good base for an alcoholic cocktail. If Pia can work her magic and create a Vodka based one, I’ll buy it!

I’m not traditionally one for tampering with nature when it comes to black teas, especially when it’s fruit that’s involved. This made me rethink my stance though. I could quite happily drink this, ooo at least twice a day. I wouldn’t have it first thing as I feel as though this is a tea for the right occassion and at the right time. Those right times for me have been when I was counting how many coat hangers I have in the house and coming home from the laundrette with freshly pressed Y-fronts.

I’ve also got a packet of English Breakfast on the go too. That’s my go to tea for everyday use. If it ain’t broke…

I highly recommend Piacha Teas. I also highly recommend listening to the back catalogue of Eiffel 65 but that’s another matter.

Piacha Tea Bar & Shop

280 Upper Street

Islington

London N1 2TZ

@piachatea

www.piacha.co.uk 

 

#TEACLUB@PIACHA

Piacha’s Rhubarb Fudge Rooibos stood out due to the boldness of flavours and creamy textures that the others didn’t manage to capture.” The Tea Witch, 2015.

“Not every day you get a packet of tea that doubles up as an envelope.” #teaclub, 2015.

“I’ve been noticing gravity since I was very young.” Cameron Diaz.

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Black Tea & Cherry. Winning!

Well here’s something new. We have a collaboration with the lovely people at Piacha Teas. You know, the very people who have an ace looking Tea Bar in Islington, North London. The very tea company that send out Tea Mail’s (postcards that contain real tea) through your letterbox with delightful messages on. The very tea company that The Tea Witch raves on about and made her debut visit to the Tea Bar last year.

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Each tea envelope comes with a personal message. Maybe yours will say ‘Those lads at the teaclub are good eggs’.

Now, it becomes ‘the very tea company’ that loves a collaboration. We’re proud to team up with Piacha Teas on this exclusive offer that runs for most of July. That’s Oolong time! Throughout 4th – 25th July, we’ll be tweeting all things Piacha. We’ll be posting pictures of their fabulous teas, publishing our own review of their subscription service, running our classic ‘Getting to Know You’ series with a feature on Piacha Teas and ironing our work shirts.

50% off your first Tea Envelopes Subscription purchase.

Enter #TEACLUB@PIACHA at the checkout to apply your discount.

If you order 1 or more tea envelopes and chose the ‘Subscribe’ option (not the ‘Deliver once’ option), you’ll get a 50% off your first order.

www.piacha.co.uk

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Apple Green Tea?  Milky Oolong? Rooibos Rhubarb Fudge? Piacha Teas got your darkest tea desires covered.

Terms & Conditions

  1. This is a 3 week voucher code for tea envelopes only and runs from 4th July – 25th July.
  2. To get the discount, you must subscribe to regular tea deliveries. You can unsubscribe, skip deliveries and otherwise manage your subscription via the Manage Subscription page.
  3. Valid for new subscribers only.
  4. Maximum of 1 subscription per household.
  5. Maximum purchase value: £50.

Yeh Organic Tea: Luxurious tea from the Netherlands.

Fresh off my recent camping holiday in Scotland I was quick to put the kettle on and blog about some of the tea rooms I visited. It was very kind of Yeh Organic Tea to praise our blog that day and offer us the chance to review some of their teas. When I later checked out their website I certainly raised an eye brow as to how premium the teas looked in design and range. There’s an element of prestige and heritage behind the brand too when I got to read more information about the company thanks to the Yeh Organic Tea twitter handle.

Yeh Organic Tea, based in the Netherlands, was founded by Hsiu-Li Yeh in 2009 after graduating from the University of Technology in Delft (in between Rotterdam and The Hague. Yes, yes I had to Google).  Technology and design play a big part in Yeh Organic Tea and Hsiu-Li Yeh is also the chief designer for the brand. That’s where the ‘prestige’ plays a role as the designs on front of the tea tins are beautiful. All varied, all with their own clues as to what tea might be inside. As for the ‘heritage’, Hsiu-Li Yeh was born in China and tea runs in her blood. China of course is arguably the birth place of tea as we know it with Yunnan and Keemun the native teas.  Yeh Organic Tea works with tea plantations in China and India to give us some of the most luxurious teas to Europe. The best thing about it? It’s affordable and they ship to the UK for a Flat Rate of €5. For those lucky enough to be in the Netherlands, shipping will only cost you €3. 

I was sent 3 x 25g tins of tea in the post. 25g of Cape Gold (Rooibos with Lemon and Lime), 25g of Yunnan and 25g of Bi Luo Chun, a green tea and part of the Black Label range. Each one looking gorgeous with their designs, courtesy of – yes, you guessed it – Hsiu-Li Yeh.

In typical #teaclub fashion I wasted no time in switching the kettle on. Out came my trusty glass teapot infuser and in went some Cape Gold. Rooibos, a naturally caffeine-free tea from South Africa, is a tea I adore. It’s that perfect alternative to a regular black tea and its health benefits are endless. Full of anti-oxidants, Rooibos will make you feel good on the inside. Full of colour and full of energy, with an added citrus kick thanks to the lemon and lime, its a drink best enjoyed without milk and sugar. How did I feel after a cup of Cape Gold? Like I was in paradise!

The journey of tea exploration continued. This time it was to be the Yunnan tea making an appearance. Fresh from his outstanding Glastonbury set, I brought out the Lionel Richie mug once more and got to work. The trusty glass teapot infuser brewed my Yunnan and it was such a treat to smell the caramel notes. Since setting up the #teaclub, Yunnan has been a revelation. This particular Yunnan was pure luxury. Milk is optional but I had it without to maximise its natural taste. Sweet like caramel indeed. The perfect tea for a Custard Cream biscuit. The best of Britain meets the best of China.

Now the 3rd tea sent was a Green Tea and here I am at a crossroads. Known for its health benefits, Green Tea can aid with weight loss, reduce the risk of cancer and increase brain function. Being honest, I am not a Green Tea drinker. I even tried to get beyond the aroma (which I struggle to admire of any Green Tea) and have a taste but I couldn’t do it. Luckily my dad has developed a liking for such tea and he was excited to try some. He asked me the question: ‘What does Black Label mean son?’. Black Label is the more premium…. no wait, I already used that word to describe Yeh Organic Tea didn’t I? Basically, it’s the most exclusive, perhaps more rare range of tea on sale. With Green Tea, don’t boil water at 100 degrees. Instead, look for about 70 to 80 degrees. it’s hard to recognise when this is on a kettle so do use good judgement. My dad was served a cup of Bi Luo Chun, again with no sugar or milk, and he was away in his own world. Basically he didn’t speak to me until the end, when he said “The aroma is strong but pleasant. The taste is fruity. Very different to other Green Tea’s I’ve tried which makes it unique. I’ll look forward to the next cup you make me son!”.

This is the first time I’ve reviewed a tea company outside the UK and I’m delighted to have got in touch with Hsiu-Li Yeh at Yeh Organic Tea because there are certain things about this company that make their teas something to highly consider as your next tea purchase. I’ve talked about these points already but to summarise:

  1. Presentation. Each tin has a different design (except the Black Label of course. Those tea tins just look sleek and elegant). Information is clear with symbols and numbers serving as brewing guidelines.
  2. Luxury. There’s a sense that when you hold one of the tea tins, you’re holding art. Cape Gold provides the colour and zest of life. Yunnan provides the caramel for those who like to indulge. Bi Luo Chun provides the delicate leaves and aroma.
  3. Customer Service. Sometimes words get lost in translation when speaking to someone who lives in another country but it was great to speak to Hsiu-Li Yeh. She is passionate about tea, full of information and understands the value of humour (or humor if you’re American). I like that a lot.

www.yehtea.com – Online store stocking teas in various quantities

@YehTeaCouture – Tweets made in English