Mighty Leaf News
The naming of tea is no small matter. It can tell you much about the character, nature, and origin of the tea. One of the oldest tea legends has it that in the village of Longjing, during the Qing dynasty, if you peered into the well you could see dragons circling in the water. Some say a dragon even lived in the well. I have been to 3 wells in Longjing and have yet to see any dragons. In one of the wells, you can’t even see the water. Instead, the well got the name because the water had different densities and when it swirled, it looked like there might be dragons in the water. In Chinese culture, dragons are very auspicious and symbolize long life. Seeing dragons in a well was considered a good thing—they weren’t the “eating people” kind of dragons. People try to have children born in the year of the dragon, which is the only mythical creature in the 12-year Chinese calendar cycle, just to give you an idea of how important the dragon is in Chinese culture.
Stories about tea are as old as tea...and tea is very old. Follow us on a journey through history and mythology to find the origins of the tea we enjoy today.
Iced tea has evolved a lot over the past thirty years, and thank goodness. There was a time when the only iced tea people drank was simply plain black tea. Now, we’ve got a lot more choices, from fruity, flavored black teas to iced green tea in ready-to-drink bottles. I’m thrilled to see iced tea evolving, and even better, to see people drinking it at home more often. There is, however, a science to making sure that you’re making a good iced tea brew. It’s not hard, but if you follow these few tips, everyone will be begging for your iced tea. It’s up to you whether you share the secrets or not.
Join Eliot Jordan on his tea tour of the Shizuoka province of Japan, from factories, to fields, to tea houses.
This summer, we are excited to introduce three new teas in our pyramid whole leaf tea pouches: Emerald Matcha, Almond Spice, and Coconut Assam. They will soon be available on amazon.com and in grocery stores. When we first started talking about adding teas to our current mix, we began by looking to develop teas that would be unlike anything we currently offered. My goal for any tea we put into a pouch is to always try and think: what’s going to be the next classic tea? I’m not interested in launching a tea that’s going to compete with our top-selling tea. Nor am I interested in chasing trends to introduce a tea that will be interesting for six months until the next big thing comes along. I want whatever teas we carry to be cornerstones going forward.
The Japanese tea ceremony dates back to Sen no Rikyu, a tea master who served General Oda Nobunaga and then with his successor Toyotomi Hideyoshi. He's credited with his influence on the way of tea, also known as chado. The way of tea incorporated all of the major components of Japanese philosophy and aesthetics 500 years ago. Rikyu's influence extended to introducing the concept of wabi-sabi — an appreciation for beauty that is imperfect and impermanent into the tea ceremony, a style known as wabi-cha. The classical Japanese art seen in calligraphy and ikebana, the Japanese style of flower arranging are brought into the tea ceremony along with the issue of harmony and balance, finding the universal in the immediate and simple thing in front of you.
New ingredients come in every year in the tea world. If you consider the herbal tea world, there are half a dozen bases for all herbal teas. These include chamomile, mint, hibiscus, and rosehips, which form the flavor foundation for many herbal teas. They're all many centuries old and used widely. But rooibos has only been a worldwide tea ingredient for 25 years.