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What is Tea?

There are a lot of things out there called "tea" – herbs, roots, mushrooms, flowers, you name it. But in fact, most of those are not tea.

Think about it this way:

Tea is a plant...

All tea comes from a group of plants in the Camellia family.

And also a drink made from that plant.

We take leaves from the Camellia plant and steep them in water.

And that's it!

Anything else is not actually tea. The word for different plants steeped in water is "tisane."

Just like you wouldn't put kidney beans in water and call it "coffee," we don't just call any old plant "tea."

Types of Tea

Puerh Tea: Puerh tea undergoes a post-fermentation process that changes the flavor, increases the health benefits and is classified into two categories: sheng (raw) and shou (ripe). Sheng puerh is grassy, vegetal, slightly bitter, floral, and energizing. As it ages, sheng puerh becomes sweeter, richer, and darker with a complex flavor profile. Shou puerh has earthy, chocolatey, and vanilla notes with a grounding meditative energy.

Liu Bao Tea: A true black tea that is more similar to fermented puerh tea with woodsy, mossy, and forest floor flavors.

Black/Red Tea: Red tea, known as black tea in the West, is fully-oxidized and more caffeinated with bold, bittersweet flavors.

Oolong Tea: Oolong teas are semi-oxidized with flavor profiles ranging from light & floral to robust & roasted.

Green Tea: Green teas is minimally processed and unoxidized with a fresh, grassy, vegetal, or nutty flavor profile.

White Tea: Known for its minimal processing and high antioxidants, white tea is delicate, elegant, and floral.

Herbal Tea: With specific health benefits, herbal teas or tisanes are made from herbs, botanicals, fruits, flowers, or spices.

What is a "living tea"?

Most commercially-available teas today are produced without respect for the plant or the planet. Laden with chemical pesticides and cramped in tight rows on plantations, these tea trees grow to their (stunted) full size bearing only a fraction of the flavors, health benefits, and vital energy of a happy tea plant.

Living Teas are defined by:

  • seed propagation, rather than grafted clippings
  • room to grow
  • biodiverse environments and growing conditions
  • free of any chemical pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers
  • no artificial irrigation
  • healthy relationships and living wages for all involved

This level of intention and respect has been our guiding principle from day one.

How to Enjoy a Living Tea

There are many ways to brew a fine tea. Let's break it down.

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