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Recently we became purveyors of Yogi Teas, a brand of herbal and spicy teas that originally started being sold in natural food stores but are now growing in popularity. Each box comes with 16 tea bags and help support either mind or body.*

How Yogi Teas got started is a very inspiring story. Back in 1969, a man named Yogi Bhajan came to the US from India to teach yoga. Many said he was a very inspiring man, one who shared his knowledge, wisdom, and teas with his students. He made his teas using only five traditional Ayurvedic spices: cardamom, cinnamon bark, black pepper, ginger root, and clove bud. The tea he served to his students after his yoga classes was described to be aromatic and soothing, and so it was nicknamed “Yogi Tea”.

20161030_204421Now Yogi’s teas have blossomed into more than 60 blends, many of them carrying the five spices in them and many herbal. One noticeable thing about the teabags, which have strings, is that they have inspiring messages written on the tea tags. It’s a nice little surprise and it makes tea time just a bit more fun that it already is. The one I got when opening my teabag of BerryDeTox said: “People who love are happy”. Each teabag is different so prepare to be surprised.

We carry 18 blends so it’s very tempting not to buy all of them and try them at once! My own personal favorite is the Echinacea Immune Support. It’s a nice blend of soothing herbs and it’s perfect for bedtime. Try a Yogi tea today!

-CD

 

*Please note: While these teas are advertised to help relieve an ailment like tension or stress, each box states that these statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and the products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

 

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As soon as summer is over, pumpkin spice and cinnamon begin to fill the shelves of stores faster than you can say “Halloween”, boots replace flip flops, and coats are brought out from dark closets and into the bright orange sunshine. The cooler weather is finally upon us for a short time, and you can finally enjoy tea hot once again! What better way to celebrate Fall than with tolsll_psp_-00_loose-leaf-tea-pumpkin-spiceour Fall flavored tea?

tolstb_cran_-00_cranberry-pouchOur refreshing Cranberry Black Tea is a good way to transition to fall but still have a sweet fruity flavor. The black tea is grown in the high districts of Sri Lanka: Nuwara Eliya, Uva, and Dimbula. This tea is flavored using oils and not flavoring crystals, which give the tea a more brighter taste. Try it iced for a cool, refreshing experience!

Or are you a huge fan of pumpkin? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Twinings Pumpkin Spice Chai is perfect for your pumpkin fix without having to get a latte. Twinings is one of Britain’s best known tea brands, using quality black tea along with the finest spices for their chai teas. Add milk once your cup of pumpkin chai is ready and you will be taken to a spicy heaven! Not a fan of chai? Try our English Tea Store Pumpkin Spice, a blend of black tea and South African Rooibos, creating a medium caffeinated tea to give you a lovely balance of flavor. We also have Stash’s Pumpkin Spice, which is a decaf blend and is in a small 10 pack.tolsll_meraps_-mercedes-apple-spice-herbal-loose-leaf-tea

For the apple lovers, we have our very own Mercedes Apple Spice Tea. It’s a crisp and spicy blend of apple, hibiscus, cardamom, cloves, pepper, and cinnamon. It’s caffeine free and it’s loaded with Vitamin C! Need more of a spicy kick? Try Twinings Apple Chai, a sweet chai equivalent to the Pumpkin Chai but with apple flavor. It is a one of a kind tea experience that will leave you wanting more!

 

-CD

 

Welcome back to our Tea of the Month! For the month of March 2016, we are featuring assam teas. It is a dark, full bodied tea that is grown in the well known Indian region of Assam. The tea is known for it’s malty flavor and is excellent with milk and sugar, or good without, hot or cold. We carry them in teabags or looseleaf.

Excited for spring? We have our raspberry teas on sale this month, also in teabags and looseleaf. This tea is a Ceylon tea with just a hint of fruity raspberry. Try with a little sweetener either hot or iced!

Or can’t decide on one tea to try? We always have our samplers! This month’s featured sampler is “A Taste of Tea”. Five sample bags of pre-selected teatobp1000023568_-00_black_taste-of-tea-group_tea-sample-tea-bags-a-taste-of-tea-samplerfavorites-Regular Earl Grey, Chamomile Herbal, Sencha Kyoto Cherry Rose Festival, Irish Breakfast, and Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling-are all packed into one great price.

And once the snow melts, there will be flowers and where there are flowers, there will be bees, which bring honey! We have our English Tea Store honey sticks, in packs of 20 (or if you really love honey, we also have select flavored honey sticks in packs of 100). Add some of natural, sweet honey flavor to your English Breakfast or green tea. This month’s selected flavors are Peach and Lemon.

There are more products in the Tea of the Month page, updating every month! Come check it out!

-CD

 

It is officially October and that means it is the perfect time to start enjoying seasonal teas! What’s even better is that two of our seasonal teas are on sale the whole entire month. For our sale selections we’re offering Pumpkin Spice & Indian Chai + a Tea Sampler Bag.

Our Pumpkin Spice Flavored Black Tea (Loose) is made using a blend of black teas and South African rooibos. The Pumpkin Spice flavoring is made using natural pumpkin and spicy cinnamon. tolsll_psp_-00_loose-leaf-tea-pumpkin-spiceThis blend is the perfect balance for the palate. The Rooibos does not overpower the pumpkin while the black tea balances out the spicy cinnamon equaling the perfect blend of taste. Black tea is extremely popular and has great health benefits. Some of the benefits include: Oral health, healthy heart, antioxidants, lower risk of diabetes, better immune system, and even increased energy! The Pumpkin Spice Black Tea (Loose) is available in three sizes: 4 ounces, 16 ounces, and 80 ounces. Try the 4-ounce blend for only $4.41!

The next Tea of the Month is Indian Spice Chai. Over the past few years, Chai Tea has seen phenomenal growth and popularity. Great Chai tea can be found in most Indian restaurants and even grocery stores. The spices vary from region to region and among households in India. The most common are cardamom, citolsll_othind_-indian-spiced-chai-tea-loose-leafnnamon, ginger, cloves, and pepper. Chai produces a warming and soothing effect and acts like a natural digestive aid. Many people agree that Chai tea is a healthy alternative to coffee. Unlike coffee, Chai tea has many beneficial properties like antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. This month we’re offering discounts on our Indian Spice Loose Leaf and Tea Bags. The tea bags start at just $3.90 for 25 or try the 4-ounce blend for only $4.41.

If you’re looking for different teas to sample, try our Time For Tea – Tea Bag Sampler. This sampler includes Double Bergamot Earl Grey, Cranberry Orange Black Tea, Maple Black, Chocolate Mint Black, and Peach Apricot Black Tea. For the best brew, these teas should be brewed in water that has been brought to a boil for 3-5 minutes. Only $3.18!

*all special pricing will end October 31, 2015.

July has arrived! It may seem like the past few months have been flying by, but we’re here to give you a little bit of tea encouragement. The teas listed below offer special pricing that will last all month long (no code needed.)

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(c) English Tea Store – Earl Grey Teabags

The first tea is our Regular Earl Grey Tea in Fine Loose Leaf or Teabags. The Earl Grey Tea blend from English Tea Store is a blend of Ceylon and Indian teas. The tea receives its unusual and unique flavor from oil of Bergamot – which is a small acidic orange. The Bergamot orange is a cross between the sweet or pear lemon (Citrus Limetta) and the Seville or sour orange (Citrus Aurantium). The sour orange is native to Southern Vietnam. The Earl Grey Fine Loose Tea is available in 4 different sizes: 4 ounces, 8 ounces, 15 ounces, or 80 ounces. The Earl Grey Teabags are available in a 25 pouch, 25 tin, 50 pouch, 100 bulk, or 500 bulk.

Curious about the benefits of drinking Earl Grey Tea?

  • Good for your teeth – That’s right! Tea contains very high levels of catechin, which is an antioxidant that fights oral infection. Flouride is a naturally occurring component in Earl Grey.
  • Promotes good digestion – Earl Grey can aid and relieve painful digestion, colic, and nausea.
  • Fights anxiety and depression – Unfortunately, in today’s world many people suffer from anxiety, depression, or both. Maybe you’re looking for other routes instead of medicine? The Bergamot in Earl Grey has a calming effect and has natural aromatherapy qualities.
  • Weight loss – Like most teas citrus teas, Earl Grey an induce weight loss. It is thought that calories are broken down into food for your muscles or released through the metabolic process. Try adding some extra citrus like lemon!
  • Hydration (It’s Key!) – Hydration is so important for your body…and it’s not just because tea is made with water. Earl Grey has a high potassium content so it keeps your fluids in check.
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(c) English Tea Store – Mim Estate Loose Leaf

Moving on to our next July tea – Mim Estate in Loose Leaf. The Mim Estate blend from the English Tea Store has a distinctive “Muscatel” character with a hint of currant. This tea is a 2nd flush Darjeeling and comes from the Mim Estate in Northern India. The genus of the Darjeeling tea bush is the Chinese Jat, which gives it the distinctive muscatel character. The fragrance and taste is a complex bouquet that travels right out of the cup. Some may describe the taste as nutty, black currant, or muscat grape-like.

The final tea of the month is actually multiple teas in a sampler (What more could you ask for?!) – The Fruit Kick – Loose Leaf Sampler. This is great if you’re looking to try something new and adventure out of your safe zone. Each sampler pack comes with 1 ounce of each of our favorite fruit flavored loose leaf teas: Apple Spice Black Tea, Blackcurrant Black Tea, Pomegranate Lemon Black Tea, Wild Blueberry Organic Tea, and Florida Orange Rooibos Tea. We recommend brewing in water, that has been brought to a boil, for 3-5 minutes.

Okay – I think we’ve given you a lot to think about. Tell us your favorite flavored tea!

blueberry-sweet-fruitOur other Tea of the Month is Bingo Blueberry, a full flavored tea with a strong blueberry character. Enjoy 15% off this tea for the rest of the month. This particular tea was specially formulated to acknowledge the great taste and known health benefits of blueberries. In addition to the antioxidants in the blueberries, hibiscus brings the added benefits of Vitamin A and C to the blend. Bingo Blueberry will accommodate the tastes of people who want to experience a refreshing healthy new style drink without caffeine. It is excellent as a hot drink and simply dynamite as a cold drink. You will want to add a pinch of natural cane sugar as this accentuates the natural flavorings and brings out the subtle tastes of the dried berries.bingo

Ingredients in this tea are fruit pieces and flower petals. What better way to welcome spring?

peachBoth of our teas this month are fruity, just right for the fresh blossoms of spring here in the states. Peach apricot is our first choice for the month, being a Ceylon black flavored with real papaya, apricot, and peach fruit. I love peaches. Chambersburg is a drive to the east from where we live in PA, and the peaches you get there are unrivaled: big enough to be a full meal for two, sweet, and so juicy you need a knife and fork to eat them. Families make a day of going for Chambersburg peaches just like they do Bedford apples in the fall.

According to the peach apricotAlmanac, peaches ripen faster in a closed paper bag at room temperature. If you are a gardener like me, you are familiar with this principal. I remember weekend fall days in the garden, picking all the green tomatoes that were healthy, hoping to get them in before the cold snap ruined them. We’d wrap the tomatoes in newspaper and pack them in paper bags to store in the basement until we were ready for them. They ripened this way and we were able to extend our growing season. When you live in the Laurel Highlands of PA, the growing season is short and anything to extend it is appreciated!

Until the Chambersburg peaches are ready, this tea is the next best thing, with a very heady aroma. This tea is steeped 3-5 minutes for best body and just a smidge of sugar really makes it come alive. At 15% all month, it’s all the sweeter.

~Your Editor

tolsll_roobou_-bourbon-st-vanilla-rooibos-caffeine-free-loose-leaf-tea.I am wondering why we chose Bourbon Street Vanilla Rooibos for one of our March Teas of the Month. For St. Patrick’s Day I am thinking Scotch (by association), Irish Whisky, green beer. But Bourbon? Ok. Let’s think this through another way – Bourbon Street, Mardi Gras. But that was in February this year. So I’m trying real hard to tie it in to March without questioning your merchandiser, Tammy, because she is a sweetheart and so good at her job.

bourbon streetOur website espouses, “The Bourbon Street Vanilla Rooibos Caffeine Free Tea blend from English Tea Store has a cinnamon spice flavor that gives this Bourbon Street Vanilla Rooibos a wonderful vanilla n’ jazz character. Terrific served hot and sensational served iced, you can also make rooibos lattes for a super taste (and if you listen carefully you will hear the riverboat steam whistles and wailing of a saxophone along the Mississippi).”

logo4After searching “Bourbon March” I came up with the only thing that makes sense – there is a bourbon and bacon festival in March this year. DelRay Beach in Florida sponsors three different food events throughout the year – garlic, bourbon and bacon, and wine and seafood. At the bourbon and bacon festival, attendees can expect seminars and tastings, as well as pork recipes of all kinds set to the soundtrack of live blues musicians. I doubt anyone will be sipping our Bourbon Street Vanilla Rooibos but a town that loves bacon, garlic, and music is ok with me.

And it’s actually probably much safer. Except for your heart.

I like both Redbush (Rooibos) and Honeybush teas, though both are actually the leaves of flowering legumes, and not really tea at all. Neither has caffeine, both are low in tannin, and both come from Africa. Both are rich sources of antioxidants. Both have naturally sweet undertones. Close cousins, both these herbs require a longer-than-Ceylon steeping, of 5-7 minutes. Because of the low tannin, the “tea” will tolerate this length without becoming bitter. Rooibos is only grown in South Africa, and Honeybush is rarer still, relegated to only the eastern and western cape regions of South Africa. Both are harvested by cutting and bruising, oxidizing (fermenting), then drying. Given the similarities, why choose one over the other?

honeybushHoneybush was one of the first black tea substitutes. There are 23 species, each with a slight varietal flavouring. Originally cultivated by hand in the mountainous regions of east coast South Africa, much honeybush is still hand picked today. However, in 1998, group of South African farmers formed the South African Honeybush Producers Organization (SAHPA), which promotes new growing and production techniques. As a result, two large Honeybush plantations have opened since 2001, as have many Honeybush research partnerships. If you have tasted this tea, more prolific Honeybush is a very good thing! This tea is usually composed simply of honeybush, which carries undertones of wood and honey. It is so aromatic that it can be steeped on the stove and left to scent a room. It is likened to a hot apricot or dried fruit mixture in taste and a bit of honey added while brewing enhances the natural flavour. It is said to have a stronger but more pleasant flavour, than Rooibos.

bourbonRooibos, Honeybush’s more robust cousin, has long been believed to alleviate headaches and stomach aches. It also answers to the name Red Tea, Bush Tea, and Red Bush Tea. It has an earthy, creamy, sweet flavour. Unlike most teas, there is nutrition information accompanying this herb. Though trace, a typical cup of Rooibos contains Iron, Potassium, Calcium, Copper, Zinc, Magnesium, Fluoride, and Manganese. Unlike plain honeybush, rooibos often comes flavoured: strawberries, lemon, orange, peach, pina colada, bourbon street vanilla, the list is endless. It is said to taste more “medicinal” and the flavoring helps cut down on that. Unlike honeybush, if you steep it a bit less than the 5-7 minutes, you will still get a full-bodied cup. The needle-like leaves are fermented, which gives the plant its reddish color and enhances flavor. Unoxidized Rooibos is available as “green” rooibos but is grassy, malty, and pricier than the red version.

Those who have tried both range from “very similar” to “distant cousins who don’t even talk and I much prefer…” I am drinking a porcelain cup of unadulterated, delicate honeybush right now and it suits me fine, just as a rich rooibos in a thick earthenware mug on a snowy day does.

~Your Editor

There is a lot of concern these days over caffeine and about drinking something that will help this ailment or that ailment or make your hair shinier, your skin glow, and other such beneficial effects. Several herbals have come to the forefront, mainly through the constant marketing of them as miracle cures. But some of these also taste good. Imagine that! I selected five that seem to be the most common.

Top to bottom: Rooibos, Honeybush, Chamomile, Yerba Mate, Peppermint (ETS images)

Top to bottom: Rooibos, Honeybush, Chamomile, Yerba Mate, Peppermint (ETS images)

1 Rooibos

Rooibos (Dutch for “Redbush”) is from the plant Aspalathus linearis. The leaves turn red after being processed and infuse a red liquid containing some beneficial ingredients including calcium, potassium, and iron, but caffeine-free. This herbal became popular as a substitute for true tea during World War II due to difficulty shipping tea from Asia to Europe, just as chicory became a substitute for coffee when bean prices spiked. When this infusion started getting introduced to the U.S. market, a vendor decided it would sell better if called “red tea.” They ended up adding to the already sizable name confusion out there. Plus, there was already a red tea (it’s what Asians call a fully oxidized tea – we call that a “black tea”).

2 Honeybush

Honeybush is not a “tea” but rather one of those herbals made from an entirely different plant than the tea bush (Camellia Sinensis). The plant is from the cyclopia species and grows in South Africa in the rugged, inaccessible areas of the mountains near the Cape. The flowers and leaves, which are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, have been used to make infusions for centuries by natives of the area as a relief for various ailments. The infusion is caffeine-free, a great attraction for people who want to avoid anything stimulating and another great reason not to call it “tea.” The flavor is usually sweet and smooth, but it also lends itself to added flavorings.

3 Chamomile

Chamomile (aka “camomile”) is one of the most popular and well-known floral herbals. It is a flower similar in appearance to the daisy and in the same botanical family. Snow white wide, flat petals encircle a sunny yellow somewhat spherical center that is much larger than a daisy’s. This flower has been part of the herbalist’s “toolkit” since ancient Egyptian times, where it was used as a cure for malaria and was dedicated to the sun god, Ra. There is Roman chamomile and German chamomile (don’t let the names fool you, since they are grown elsewhere). However, Egyptian chamomile is widely noted as far more fragrant and flavorful than those. When buying chamomile, be sure to deal with a reputable vendor to assure you get true chamomile, not pineapple weed, which is sometimes substituted and can cause strong allergic reactions in hayfever sufferers (more so than from true chamomile).

4 Yerba Mate

Yerba mate is an herbal beverage that’s wildly popular in many countries in South America. It is traditionally drunk as a hot beverage that is served in a gourd called a “mate.” You sip it through a metal straw (a bombilla) that filters out the leaves and gritty bits. The flavor in its pure form can be a bit tough for the uninitiated to take but is still becoming increasingly popular in North America and elsewhere around the world. Added flavorings help many folks adjust to it. Plus, you can find it in a convenient bagged form.

5 Mint

Peppermint is a North American grown herb that contains no caffeine. Since it has a number of digestive aid properties, peppermint is often consumed after meals, including in a tisane or infusion. The oils in peppermint are said to stimulate the flow of secretions in the stomach and help relieve gas pains and calm your stomach. It’s use as a breath fresher is well-known. There are several brands, including Taylors of Harrogate, Twinings, and Harrison & Crosfield, plus blends like Moroccan Mint, or China White with Mint.

Choice galore for those of you ultra sensitive to caffeine or who just want something different. Enjoy!

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.

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© Online Stores, LLC, and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, LLC., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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