Saturday, November 29, 2014

Pip Pip and Pass the Biscuits - The Gift of Tea

Hardly a comprehensive list - I'm just mentioning a few picks of interest here. Why get a lea mug at a discount store and buy tea at the grocer when you can get something far more unique?

My tea loving friends tell me Adajoi Teas are impressive. Their website is too  - You can pic from great close ups of each tea and mix your own. But there is something brilliant they've put together - FANDOM tea tins.

You can CLICK HERE and go pick tin boxes for the tea lover in your life who is a fan of everything from Breaking Bad to Doctor Who to Game of Thrones to the Big Bang Theory, Boardwalk Empire and of course Zombie (I have totally missed THAT boat), Night Before Christmas, Pirates of the Carribean, Glee, Downton Abby (TIP: give it with the Downtown Abby CD!), knitting, the zodiac… you name it. Just hover on the tea tin and you'll see what's inside. Click on it and you go to a page where you can order just a pouch of the tea with the label on it, or a tin the size of an Altoids box with tea inside like this:

or you can get a "promo kit" with samples for several friends. Like this weekend only, you can grab this whole Star Wars Sampler. There are over 64,000 shows - but don't worry-- they make it easy enough for you to choose by letter or enter a name into the search field.

FREE SHIPPING on Cyber Monday, and you get a $5 coupon for signing up to their e-mail (a pop up will present when you sign on)

They also have loose leave gifts tea mix and match….you could spend quite awhile on this site, so it doesn't have to be thematic.

Here is my favorite tea, since Almond Sunset got canceled inexplicably by Celestial Seasonings.
 Hot Apple Cider Tea by Republic of Tea. 

With a little ginger, rose hips, and cardamom, apple, lemon and cinnamon, it's vert healthy for you too - mild, a little sweet and aromatic. Makes the house smell good all winter long, a wonderful decaf to drink at any time of day without fear of keeping you up at night. $11.50 for a tin of 36 bags, or order $250 bags bulk for $44 at Republic of Tea.

I had my Tea aficionado pals told me about this glass mug - The Unimug. They said it was the best, not only in looks but for the total steeping experience. Find it on the MOMA website, in three beautiful colors: Wine, pictured here, blue and yellow,  for $17 and, if a member of MOMA, for $15.30.

I like this more basic, streamlined glass infuser with the lid. It helps to keep things hot and avoid spills. $19.99 for cup, lid and infuser from ADAGIO

And why not buy the english biscuits to go with? These you CAN get in the grocery store - you may need to try the gourmet or import/specialty section, but most large stores have these in the cookie aisle. But you probably can find them all on Amazon too.

I recommend: Carrs Ginger Lemon - rich, creamy and crunchy- so flavorful!

Bahlsen's - any kind are great and you should find at least 2-4 of them at the supermarket. But here are my two best picks - the hazelnut is like nothing you've tasted before. 

And the light rolled waffle cookies with one end dipped in light or dark chocolate also is a great thing to have with Champagne (Keep that in mind for New Years or a hot date!)

Kedem tea biscuits which are really inexpensive and come in chocolate, vanilla, orange and plain. All are subtle and light. 

There are a plethora of honeys out there.  Look for something organic, or local, or exotic. Or ask for honey spoons like these for only $6.95 at LTD Commodities.

or honey sticks at any store and see what you get! Look at these multi colored ones from KlineHoneyBeeFarm on Etsy! You can get 50 sticks for only $10! 

Or, you can look into various teas of the month - right now, here's a suggestion of one where you can receive 15% off. CLICK for The ENGLISH TEA STORE for details.

And just when I thought I was done, I am adding this post publication. This thermos is known for REALLY keeping things hot - or cold - for hours, and hours with it's high quality vacuum insulation and special seal on the lid. The Zojirushi Stainless Steel Thermal. For tea lovers, they have one with a tea leaf strainer inset. For $34.00 on Amazon.  Look around for other colors...

TIP: You can make this gift as big as you like - making it into a basket or putting it all in pretty tissue in a large box, or you can just give an item as a stocking stuffer.You may also just want to go to tag and yard sales or a thrift store or a luxury china shop to find a very pretty china tea cup and saucer - or two, or a set, depending on how big you might want this gift to be. There are tea post galore, asian themed to industrial everywhere - online, by artisans at farmers markets, in department stores or  in specially stores. There are pretty linen napkins and tea cozies - you can really get creative with this gift. Pip pip!

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