In January of 2009 the world of tea changed forever … well, at least up to today and hopefully for years to come. This blog was launched. About eight months later I was invited to join its team of writers. And about 3 years ago as of the posting of this article I accepted an invitation to be the blog’s editor – the fifth person to hold that position and the longest. Time to celebrate both events!
The English Tea Store Tea Blog is owned by (obviously) The English Tea Store, which was founded as part of Online Stores, Inc., in 2001 in Pennsylvania just a little east of Pittsburgh. The focus was on bringing a decent cuppa to the American public via an online store (thanks to Jeff Bezos who founded the first online store in 1994 and paved the way for many others that followed). They offered typical British brands such as PG Tips and Typhoo and their own brand, in both bagged and loose leaf form. Of course, for the Brits, tea time is nothing without the proper treats, so they also had British foods available, from that tea time staple – scones – to traditions such as a variety of “biccies” (biscuits or what we call cookies) such as McVitie’s digestives and now their own brand called “Border,” and several types of cakes such as Jaffa Cakes. And of course to steep tea, you need teapots, and to drink tea, you need teacups, so they got added to the product line, too!
Blogs (short for “web logs”) for companies were virtually unheard of in 2001, although they had been around for several years by then. They were mostly “posts” that were fairly short and that displayed in reverse date order, putting the most recent at the top. They were also tricky to implement until sites like Blogger.com came along (later bought by a large search engine company). It made posting text and images much easier and more accessible. Around 2009, companies started catching on to this new tool to contact their customers. The English Tea Store was an early entrant in this area, seeing the value of helping customers learn more about tea in general and about their products in particular. A list of writers have contributed posts on everything from the importance of water quality, the perfect way to steep, details about various types of tea, and the best way to serve, to tea traditions, gadgets, news, oddball items, and just about anything else related to tea (see my recent article about themes on our blog).
Some of those contributors over the years (besides me, of course):
To them all and the others not named above we say “Thanks!”
As editor, I know the blog wouldn’t be much without the contributions of these people who love tea as much as you do! And of course, your readership is the key ingredient that makes it all work. Thanks and know that you are greatly appreciated!
See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.
© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.