by Emeric Harney October 06, 2022 4 min read 4 Comments
Let’s face it: not all brews are loved by everyone. We understand that one person’s literal cup of tea may not be another’s. In a nod to the popular Netflix series, we’ve put together a list of what some may consider to be our “stranger teas.” If you already know and love these teas, thank you! If you’ve never tried any of them because they sounded, well, weird…maybe consider giving them a shot.
Avocado Leaf. Avocado in a cup? You betcha! You probably don’t want to pour it over your toast, but you can enjoy all the benefits of avocado in a cuppa. Our goal in creating this tea was to make available a brew with healthy qualities along with a unique taste and aroma. Judging by customer reviews, avocado leaf tea is the toast of the town!
Bamboo. What can’t you do with bamboo? It’s used for almost everything, from flooring to musical instruments, baskets, furniture and as an energy source. So why not tea? When we were approached about offering bamboo leaf, we were intrigued. What would a liquor taste like from these bright green leaves? When you steep and strain like tea, the pretty green leaves steep into a light, vegetal and sweet brew. Our Asian friends think that it can help improve your well-being.
Blooming Art Teas. Ever seen tea bloom into a beautiful flower right inside your cup? That’s exactly what these exquisitely beautiful teas do. When you drop the tea bud into hot water, a flower blossoms from the bud. It’s truly a magical tea experience.
Chaga Chai. Not content to stop at making avocado brew, we ventured into mushroom tea territory! Like Avocado Leaf, this tea is part of our Wellness blends. It’s packed with healthful ingredients – chaga mushroom, wakaya ginger, cinnamon, coconut pieces, cardamom, and nutmeg – each containing their own wellness benefits. Does it have a strong earthy flavor? We’re not gonna lie, it does. That’s why we suggest that the first time out you add your favorite milk product, sweeten it with honey, or make it a latte.
Kava Root. Another brew from our Mind Your Body collection, kava is made from the roots of Piper methysticum, a plant native to islands in the South Pacific. It is traditionally used for its naturally relaxing and social-enhancing qualities. Kava comes from the Polynesian word awa, which means “bitter.” That should tell you something about what to expect when you taste it, so again throwing it into a smoothie will tame the bitterness while allowing you all the relaxing benefits.
Lapsang Souchong. If you love the smell of campfires and the taste of that smoky air on your tongue, then lapsang souchong is for you! These ancient teas come from the Wuyi Mountains in the Fujian Province in China. Wood was plentiful in those mountains, so it was natural for them to smoke tea like bacon (before you ask: we do not make bacon tea, or it definitely would have made this list). The leaves were slowly withered to create a complex tea, then the leaves were slowly dried in rooms with a smoky fire below. Needless to say, the tea has a distinctive smoky flavor and aroma.
Matcha iri Genmaicha. Do you take brown rice in your tea? You do if you’re drinking Matcha iri Genmaicha! I’m proud to say I helped develop this tea, and it’s become very popular. It’s a different way to enjoy matcha without totally jumping into the matcha pool, if you will; it’s more like just dipping your toes (in this case, your tastebuds) in it. Genmaicha is a different kind of green tea where brown rice kernels (genmai) are added while the green bancha leaves (cha) are dried, so the kernels get crispy and some burst open. We dust this roasted green tea with matcha powder to give you a wonderfully different tea.
Olive Leaves. For those of you who love olives and olive oil – and we suspect that’s quite a few of you – we offer Olive Leaves direct from the hills of Tuscany. Someone told us about an English lady who produced dried leaves in Tuscany. After our family trip to Italy, we just had to get them. Enjoyed as a tisane, you’ll find the leaves full of lovely flavor without needing to worry about the calories. This sip is delicious and reminds us of the hot days and warm people of Italy.
Organic Turmeric. Looks like the Mind Your Body brews are winning the “stranger teas” category! There’s good reason for creating these as people are looking for more and easier ways to incorporate healthy elements into their daily lives. Turmeric powdered tea is a simple way to add this beneficial herb to your diet. Whether you drink it straight, add it to your smoothie, or even cook with it, there’s good reason to keep our Organic Turmeric on hand. Want even more goodness? Try Organic Ginger Turmeric, a blend of ginger and other spices.
Pu-erh. Pu-erh teas have all kinds of “strange” going on, making them a natural to be included on this list. The only truly fermented tea, it has a distinctively earthy flavor. While most of our pu-erhs are sold in loose leaf form, traditionally, this tea is compressed into a disc; you break off a chunk to steep and enjoy. Our Ripe Pu-erh Tea Balls will give you a taste of that experience.
Soba Roasted Buckwheat. Buckwheat pancakes? Check. Buckwheat tea? Check! This tea has always been one of my mom’s faves with its nutty, toasty flavor. A traditional Japanese specialty, it is caffeine-free and can also be used as a food source and for cooking.
Very Berry Matcha. Another way to tiptoe into the matcha experience is with this unexpected tea. It’s on this list because people don’t usually associate the flavor of berries with matcha, but it’s a wonderful marriage of flavors and another way to introduce people to the wonderful world of matcha without starting with a traditional cup of frothy greenness.
Yerba Mate. Pretty much the national beverage of Argentina, this brew made from South American herbs is one of the rare herbal teas with caffeine. Gauchos (cowboys) in Argentina used it to stay awake on long drives, so it can likely power you through your day too and keep you on your horse!
November 19, 2022
Lapsang Souchong has been my regular morning tea for years. I think it’s become less smoky in the last few years but it’s still the one I drink every morning. My daughter, not a usually a tea drinker, ordered it once and was told it’s not a beginner tea. She grew up with it as the main tea in the house
October 11, 2022
Haven’t tried all of these yet, but we love the bamboo tea!!! It’s really refreshing! Love olive leaf tea too—can’t wait to try this one! :D
October 11, 2022
Very informative article. I’m going to have to head over to the website and order a few to try. I’ll be going on a rejuvenating get-a-way in November and that will be a perfect time to enjoy new teas.
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by Emeric Harney March 16, 2023 6 min read
Enjoy getting to know Tsuyoshi Sugimoto, the owner and president of Shohokuenchten tea company in Kyoto, Japan, and a longtime colleague and friend of the Harneys.
by Mike Harney March 14, 2023 5 min read
by Emeric Harney March 02, 2023 3 min read 1 Comment
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March 16, 2023
Since first trying your Paris tea, my husband and I have become late afternoon tea drinkers! I’ve ordered several times and have not been disappointed!