Legend has it that tea, now the most popular beverage in the world, was discovered by accident by Chinese Emperor Shen Nung in 2737 BC. The Emperor was sitting beneath the tree known as Camelia Sinensis while his servant boiled drinking water. Some leaves fell into the water and both were delighted with the infusion. Much later, Buddhist monks carried tea to Japan where it became a vital and ceremonial part of Japanese culture.
It wasn’t until the 1600s that tea became a European import. The birth of the British East India Company ensured that tea would travel to Britain and the continent, but it remained expensive and therefore only available to the aristocracy. It wasn’t until the 19th century that the working classes could enjoy a fine cuppa!
Since then, no single beverage has given rise to more rituals. It speaks highly of tea’s uplifting qualities that many Asian cultures have created entire ceremonies around the preparation of tea, and European cultures have devised elaborate rituals that honor tea’s place in daily life.
Black, Green, White, Matcha, Rooibos, Chai, Oolong, Pu-erh, Herbal: We have it, from the best Darjeelings to quality Greens to rare Pu-erhs dated by vintage like fine wine. We invite you to experience the depth and variety of our 108 teas from around the world. You may just find yourself describing bouquets and finishes at your next gathering!