Teavana -- If you don't want to buy something, too bad.

566 Replies

See the shop is based to work as a hey we do everything for you. There are some people who have no idea what they are looking at how it works. The sugar is a healthy sweetner. Its made from beets instead of processed or cane. And if it was healthy then why would doctor oz. support it. To be perfectly honest your made cause where as in mejir your paying for extremely low quality items and for the box and for the paper. If u dont wanna pay for items that are proven healthier then dont bitch about it. I have been drinking the tea for 2 and a half years and i have never been healthier or happier

ChaMei select said

I’m sorry… Huh? This discussion is primarily about the quality of Teavana’s teas, whether the price point is reasonable, and the consumer’s reaction to sales people. I don’t understand what you just said above. (maybe some typos?) I don’t think anyone is questioning how good tea makes us feel in general. I would imagine all of us here are fans. I don’t think buying from Teavana specifically makes that tea any better than other tea companies, unless a Teavana blend has added antioxidants and vitamins.
I do admit that my very first experience with Teavana taints my impression of them. I also ended up with over $100 of tea that I still have in my cupboard two years later. I think I was stunned into submission. I foolishly thought the “oh, I’m giving you more than 2 oz, is that ok?” meant it was a little extra free. I should have walked out when my expectation of paying $80-ish was exceeded by more than 50%. I know better now.

Wow…and so well spoken too!

I’m sorry, but your point loses a LOT of emphasis when you can’t employ proper spelling and grammar. It also loses some oomph when your profile is nothing but a comment on this page. No reviews, no information. Bah. Add that to the fact that I cannot figure out what the heck you’re trying to say (other than Teavana rocks, which…yeah, not so much), and I’m done.

Come back when you can play with the grown-ups, okay?

PS Doctor Oz is a sensationalist idiot: http://forthesakeofscience.com/2011/09/17/dr-oz-is-a-piece-of-shit/ Never trust a quack with his own TV show.

ChaMei select said

Hehe. Yes, I was trying not to be mean regarding grammar. (I’ve always been critical with grammar). I have often mis-stated my point trying to input text on my IPad or phone but I always try to go back and edit.
I have found deals at Teavana but always with sales and always turning a blind ear to pitches on cast iron. I’ll buy one when I’ve got the money and even then I can get a better deal elsewhere.

It’s my birthday, I’ll be a bitch if I want to ;). We bought from them once, during the Heavenly Sale, and will never buy from them again. Frankly, you could probably get better quality cast iron elsewhere too. Nothing I’ve seen from them indicated any kind of quality shrugs Overpriced garbage.

shakes cane now get off my lawn, you damn kids! XD

ChaMei select said

Ooh, happy birthday! I am very mellow sipping Paris, listening to my Grace Notes chimes, and watching the house finches nesting under my roof eave. I love Spring.

Thanks! I haven’t had tea yet today gasp I should fix that straight away! Get some energy for an evening of IKEA shopping and kitchen reorganizing!

Angrboda said

As English is my second language, I have to say I always feel a little put out when I see somebody critisising other people’s spelling/grammar/syntax without knowing whether it’s their first language or if they’re honestly just trying to get by on what little they know, or if it’s a dyslexic person doing their damn best.

Lynne-tea said

I completely agree with Angrboda. My dad is very dyslexic. Does that mean he is not a ‘grown-up’? Give your head a shake. You can read it I bet. If you can’t, don’t bother. Not everyone who drinks tea can have perfect grammar and spell correctly every time. That doesn’t mean they’re unwise. Just embrace the fact we have another tea friend on the site! Don’t belittle people on this site for your own enjoyment – that’s just sad.

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Ashley said

I was interested to find this – even though it’s such an old thread – because earlier this year my boyfriend and I had a very unpleasant experience at the Teavana in the Twelve Oaks Mall (I believe that’s the one) near Detroit, Michigan.

Personally I haven’t been a real fan of Teavana for a few personal reasons, but he likes a lot of their chai teas and I never mind looking over gorgeous teaware so we’ll go in together on occasion. We’ve had some great salespeople, some indifferent salespeople, and some who tried a little too hard, but this visit was absolutely terrible. He was interested in a blend that they had put out samples of and which used his usual chai. It turned out that the other tea was much more expensive, and so he decided to wait until next time after finding out what the price was going to be to get both. The salesgirl obligingly poured out some more of the one he wanted… and then stated “But I’ll still give you some of the other kind, just a little less,” and proceeded to weigh it out to add to his order before beginning to try to talk him into a tin. I said that we wouldn’t need one – I have plenty of things to seal looseleaf tea in and was just going to let him use something of mine – but she continued to push it, talking about how the tea would lose all it’s flavor within a week. A week? I probably should have argued, but at that point we just wanted to be done and leave, so he took the extra tea and the tin.

I’ve worked in retail and definitely understand trying to meet salesgoals, help customers leave with everything they’d like, and sell products, but this crossed over from upselling to just being absolutely rude and disrespectful to us as customers.
I haven’t gone to enough different stores to condemn the chain as a whole, but we’re probably going to shift the store we visit, and if we continue to have unpleasant experiences we’re going to try to find a new teashop that works for us both. Hopefully though, we’ll find it much different in a new location!

Hi Ashley, and welcome!

I’m sorry to hear you had such a bad experience with your Teavana.

I just created a new place, and I invite you to post your experience here http://steepster.com/places/3065-teavana-novi-michigan by choosing one of the star ratings (right under their name, ‘Teavana’, in the upper left-hand corner) and writing a review. That way, others may be able to find it at a later date.

Good luck on finding a better store!

Ashley said

Thanks – I was excited to find this site! It never even occurred to me that there was a place I could meet other people who don’t find my love of tea strange or boring.
I do plan on leaving a review – most likely after tomorrow, as we’re going shopping and may be stopping in again. Personally I’m just hoping to find a new place altogether that sells my favorite. Last time I tried to find a rose tea at Teavana, it was a blend that seemed a little over-the-top to me. I’d like to go back to a small, close store like the one I had in Vancouver, BC before coming back to the US.

My Teavana gave me the “it will lose its flavor in a week” line as well. The company must train employees to say that. It’s BS. I have Teavana tea from a year ago still in a bag or pouch and it tastes just fine.

Ashley said

I’ve never once had tea lose its flavor that quickly. With the really light teas, I’ll notice the difference months to a year later sometimes, but that’s still a considerable amount of time. Sealing in other containers works just fine. I’m a little disappointed to hear this happens in other stores too and therefore probably comes from the company…
As a follow-up, we did stop by the same Teavana today, since I’ve needed something new to put under my cast-iron kettle. The salesgirl was friendly, but even after I told her I knew what I was looking for and already had a pot, she continued to try to sell me the teapots. Like I said, I understand sales goals, but there is something to be said for gauging what a specific customer wants and needs. Sometimes customers aren’t in need of a salespitch, or even help. I assume this is a trickling effect from management expectations, but it’s part of why shopping at Teavana begins to make me uncomfortable during most visits. When it comes to anything kitchen/cooking related – tea or otherwise – I like to be able to think and consider. The Teavana atmosphere just rarely is accommodating for that. I ended up going next door to Williams-Sonoma for my tea instead.

xhado123 said

My two cents on the ‘tea losing flavour’ – A lot of teas can lose subtleties and complexities only the most ardent tea connoisseur would notice. Teas have a percentage of humidity that must be maintained; else they’ll take longer to steep than usual or begin to release certain falvenoids before actually brewing. Now, Teavana does ask us to let you know about the tea losing complexity, but we really shouldn’t be telling you that your tea loses all flavour and goes stale. There’s a big push now within our corporate offices to address these issues, including myths about teas many employees take as fact. As far as true tea drinking is concerned, Jane Pettigrew’s ‘Tea Companion’ puts it best: Purchase 2oz of a new tea, and if you like it, purchase a pound and take steps to keep it fresh. The tins offer a convenient way to do so – juggling between three inadequately-sized tins can be rather annoying.

What on earth is “true tea drinking”?

And two ounces is way too much if you’re just trying the tea out. Tea companies that only offer two ounces as a minimum purchase are incredibly tiresome. It’s somewhat forgivable online, but absolutely not when you have a physical storefront.

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Ashley -
When faced with pushy salespeople I say “I’m just looking, thanks” somewhat coldly and then put on my Don’t F_ With Me face if they keep it up. This usually works, though I haven’t tried it at a Teavana.

I’ve only gone into a Teavana on one occasion, and inexplicably, I encountered an incredibly blase, hippie-ish salesperson. And ironically, it was a rare moment when I actually had a question because I was trying to find some fruity teas for my sister who likes those and I had no idea what Teavana sells. The salesperson was like “uh, we have all of these” and gestured uninterestedly to the empty space behind her. I was like, “um, so then do you maybe have a list?” It was perplexing and I didn’t buy anything (although this was because of the price…) She probably had a bad day or something.

Wow. You sound pretty rude. Hope you get nothing but pushy salespeople until you stop doing that.

hm, this was not my intention; as I said, I respond this way when a salesperson is incredibly pushy, which I consider to be just as rude as giving them a cold response. There is such a thing as respectful boundaries.

Okay, fair enough, and I apologize for snapping earlier. People being rude to salespeople is absolutely a hot button of mine, but that’s usually because they don’t have a good reason to be.

I do wonder why people seem to run into so many pushy salespeople. Like, this thread is kind of understandable because there’s obviously something wrong with the company’s business model, but people talk about pushy salespeople like it’s a common thing. Maybe it’s more of an American thing, as I don’t recall ever being seriously bugged by a salesperson.

I don’t advocate rudeness for anyone, but in a situation where someone is walking into a shop, I think the onus should be on salespeople to not be rude to the customer instead of the reverse. I’ve worked retail and I’ve had to deal with rude customers in the course of a day’s work — it’s part of the job. I was getting paid for it. A person who walks into a shop of his or her own accord is not getting paid for the experience. The store and its staff should welcome that customer with friendly and polite service. Aggressive sales tactics can, in fact, border on or actually be rude, especially when the salesperson doesn’t even pay attention to what the customer is saying, or what the customer is indicating that she wants or needs. “I’m looking for a green oolong.” “Oh, we have those. But wait, have you tried our Fruity-Tooty-Chewy-Bits Tea? It’s on special this month. And it only tastes good if you prepare it in this $200 cast iron teapot.” When I get “service” like that, it is exasperating, and it makes me not want to give my money to a company that supports and encourages such practices. Here in the U.S., especially since the economic downturn, we do, unfortunately, have a number of companies that practice the “in your face” style of sales.

In short, I don’t think anyone should be rude, but if I get a salesperson who is so busy giving his or her spiel/hard sell and won’t even listen to me when I clearly and politely state what I’m seeking, I have no problem walking out, or adopting a slightly standoffish manner and saying, “I think I’m just going to look around, thanks,” and turning away from them. I’m not going to swear at them, tell them to bugger off, or otherwise be nasty, but I will stop engaging with them. If that is “rude” then so be it.

DaisyChubb said

I think that’s a great sum up/response to this entire thread Susan.
Teavana employees reach the point of being rude to their guests, which is supported by the company itself!
It just blows my mind to think about it

Dinosara said

I think a “Don’t F*** with me” face is my default when I am dealing with random people on the street, or in stores, or on the subway, or in a bar, etc. I’ve probably been living in New York too long. :P

Missy said

@ Dinosara that’s the face I adopt in crowds. It gets my through them that much faster with less bumping.

I also use it just like wokeupfuzzy. I feel it’s a better alternative than letting them know what I think. I don’t think it’s rude to introduce some distance in response to poor selling tactics.

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Susan, if you’ve worked retail, then you should damn well know that salesperson is probably required to give you the pitch whether or not you want to hear it; and their job may depend on demonstrating to their manager their willingness to say it even to people who act like they don’t want to hear it. Yes, that’s a problem with the company model, but it doesn’t mean anyone needs to be rude to the salesperson. Most companies have a way to complain higher up. They can do that instead.

If they completely and utterly ignore what you said you are there for, then yes, that is rude. Although I’ve honestly NEVER had that happen to me, even in high-pressure retail based out of America, and I find it very strange if American culture actually accepts that happening in ANY store.

If they are just giving you the pitch first, I really don’t think that’s rude. Just because you are not interested in the deal of the day, doesn’t mean someone else isn’t. Many people will be.

You’d think in this economy that people could muster the empathy for others to understand what people have to do to keep their job. Instead, they’re just bitchier. THAT blows MY mind.

Daniel, since, as you admit, you don’t live in the U.S. and you haven’t experienced aggressive, in-your-face sales tactics, perhaps you shouldn’t judge those of us who have so harshly. Shopping is supposed to be (or should be) a pleasant experience, and when it is rendered unpleasant by a salesperson who gloms onto you the moment you step across the threshold and won’t take your hints (or outright requests) that you’d like to be left alone, it becomes disagreeable.

Here is an example. There is a chain in the U.S. called Bath and Body Works. A few years ago, they (apparently) trained their sales staff to take pushiness to a new level. I would walk in the door and immediately be greeted by someone telling me what the deal of the day was (“today we have buy two, get one free!”). Fine, I can deal with that. But then, I’d make my way to the shelves and someone would say, “Can I help you find anything today?” I’d respond, “No thank you, I am just browsing.” The salesperson would literally stand 10 feet away from me, watching my every move, and if I picked up a product on the shelf — say for example a hand lotion — she would step forward and say something like, “That’s a great product. It has such-and-such ingredient…” and repeat this every time I looked at something. This kind of shopping experience, getting unwanted advice and attention even after I’ve told them I am just browsing, and my body language is defensive, not receptive, made me flee from the store — and likely cost the company a sale, because I probably would have purchased something if they just would have left me alone. I suppose I could have looked her in the eye and said (in a civil way) something like, “I know you guys are trained to sell in a certain way, but I’d really rather be left to browse on my own,” but I just didn’t feel comfortable speaking in such a direct manner to a stranger. I suppose I could have also gone home and looked up the company’s corporate headquarters and sent them a note giving feedback, but at that point my main feeling was just to avoid that company. And I know I’m not alone in feeling this way.

I do hear you about the need to be polite to people. I don’t advocate anybody being outright rude or nasty. But like I said, I think it’s a concept that works both ways. When I worked retail, I made the sales pitch I was required to make, but if the customer declined, or if what I was offering didn’t apply to their needs, I dropped it. I also learned to read people and to know when to back off and when to step in and offer assistance. If a salesperson isn’t intuitive or well-trained enough to know when he or she is making a customer uncomfortable, and persists with a style of interaction that is unwelcome, the customer has a right to walk away or decline the salesperson’s “help.”

I think you make many good points, Susan; and quite honestly, I admire you for your choice to answer very respectfully to criticism that (I judge) has come your way.

I think there are parallels in many ‘jobs’. I continually find that, as a teacher, the results I get based on how I approach my students, and how they subsequently react to me, is not much different than the results in other ‘situations’, whether it be manager to employee, salesman to customer, or simply one person to another. Having made some pretty significant changes to how I approach life in the last two years, and seeing a dramatic change in how both students and staff react to me during that time, I am now convinced of the statement, ‘The world reflects back to you what you put out there.’ (It’s said more eloquently, but I can’t think of the exact wording just now).

Although I have authority given to me in some respects as a teacher, I still see myself as a servant to them, such that I am there to meet their needs—educational and otherwise—as the situation requires. As I see it, a salesman is really a kind of servant (although my guess is most do not see it that way). They truly believe in what they are selling to the point that they honestly think the lives of some will be better with their product or service; this kind of enthusiasm is best tempered with the understanding that not everyone will benefit, though; thus, part of the training (as you have mentioned) is knowing how ‘to look’ for the ones who truly have a need for that product. As a teacher, I see it is an honor and a privilege to ‘serve’ my students, and I believe the true salesperson would see themselves in a similar kind of light; from time to time I ask myself the following question, If I am not here to serve (and feel served, myself), then what am I doing here anyway?

I really like this, “I also learned to read people and to know when to back off and when to step in and offer assistance,” as I have learned this myself during my teaching career. As a teacher, in a way, I am a salesman, although I ‘sell’ knowledge, ideas and and even gasp values, rather than things or services. My presence in the classroom is as important (maybe even more so) as my actions; it’s about being available, watching for needs/wants, and being ready to help when asked (basically, as you have said for yourself). For example, when the students are working on some individual work (like an assessment, or something similar) I usually take up some position somewhere in the classroom (where I am visible, and not behind a desk) keeping my eyes on them, and then every now and then, I ‘take a turn’ (to quote Jane Austin) around the room to make myself available in case they have any questions, then I go right back to my post (which sometimes changes). I have come to believe that standing right next to one particular student (for example one I may feel needs extra help), or ‘hovering’ over them like a mother hen, can be more disconcerting to them than it can be helpful. Teaching is an art as well as a science. My guess is that selling ‘things’ is probably very similar, and requires lots of time and effort before one becomes really ‘proficient’ at it.

As this applies to Teavana, based on many things I have heard, and what I have experienced myself, my guess is that many of the salespersons (clearly not all) are inexperienced, and their motivation may come more strongly out of wanting to make a sale rather than wanting to serve the public; I understand that everyone has to put bread on the table, but there are many ways to do it; and as teaching is not for everyone, neither is being a salesperson. If it’s just a job (I’ve been there), then I feel it would be best for them to find something else where they feel they can better serve themselves and the public.

Anyway, enough for now. This particular thread certainly has helped to generate lots of interesting conversation, hasn’t it? : – )

Susan, I actually find it funny that you used BBW as an example, because I’ve worked for BBW Canada for 18 months around school. I understand that our training material is pretty much copypasta from the States’s version, though. This includes explicit instructions on: using the walkies to communicate when customers want to be left alone; never “watching” or following customers around the store (even if you suspect they are shoplifting, and certainly no other time); and on leaving minimum five-minute gaps between “checking-up” briefly with someone. This instruction is reiterated frequently to SAs (they are a company that SO loves to waste paper). In theory, what you’re describing isn’t something BBW staff are actually supposed to do.

I agree completely with the letter of your last paragraph, but I think we all might disagree about what is considered to be rude. I think any tone of voice which can be described as “cold” (as wokeupfuzzy said) is probably rude, and frequently uncalled for. Maybe wokeupfuzzy and I just have a different mental picture of what “cold” is, but I tend to find that it’s extremely common for people to think that being what-I-consider-rude is acceptable behavior. This isn’t even just coming from a working-in-sales perspective; my mother would have slapped me silly for doing/saying things to salespeople that I see customers do to us every day. I have never been “cold” to a salesperson, and hopefully I will never feel it necessary.

@SimpliciTEA – I don’t think I can calmly address “neither is being a salesperson [for everyone],” other than to point out that you sound like you are in a pretty privileged position of relative job stability.

I work for a different (not mall-based) retail chain, and we’re taught to sell a similar way…
They unrolled a program called VIBE last year, which stands for Valuable, Inspired Buying Experience. Basically, (according to corporate) it’s purpose is to create an environment where the customer feels comfortable buying things, as opposed to us salespeople trying to “sell” them things.

But “Good Vibe” includes “pass-bys,” which occur when you’re walking past a customer, and you see them pick up a product, you’re supposed to interject with at “That’s on special this week!” or “Did you know that those envelopes are made with recycled paper?”

We’re also expected to “mirror” people, as @SimpliciTEA said – that is, if a customer is in a rush, ring them up quickly, but if they’re feeling chatty, we shouldn’t hurry them out the door.

The way corporate teaches it, I think it makes a lot of sense as a sales tactic. Make customers comfortable, and they’ll be more likely to purchase things. But there are a lot of things that can cross the line, like doing way too many pass-bys to a customer.

We also have 3-4 pitches that we’re supposed to be giving at any specific time; I generally try to match one or two to what I think the customer would need, because I’m not going to hound them with pitch after pitch. (And it must be working well – my manager asked me why I was working Friday night, when it wasn’t busy at all, and said they should have scheduled me for Saturday afternoon, when I could use my skills to greater advantage!)

But yeah, working retail, you get all sorts. I’m of the mind that as long as I’m being paid to be in the store, I have to be courteous to a fault. And even when I leave the store, I don’t change my face; I still represent the brand, and therefore I must also be kind to strangers because you never know when one might recognize you. And I’m sure that working retail makes me more sympathetic to other retail employees’ situations – if I get a lovely associate, I always try to compliment them and speak to the manager, because I know firsthand how vital those customer compliments can be. But there are a lot of people out there who don’t seem to care about how their actions reflect on themselves.

(Wow, that was long… sorry!)

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Yeah, I interviewed for Teavana, they want you to harass the customer and be aggressive about sales. If their prices weren’t so high for their merchandise they’d have better sales me thinks.

I’ve been in other bulk tea shops and they just let you parooze around.

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Magda said

I just checked out Teavana’s return policy online, and it gives a satisfaction guarantee but the word “return” is actually omitted! “You can tea or merchandise within 90 days with a receipt.” So weird!

http://www.teavana.com/customer-service/help#ReturnPolicy

Babble said

Expect a hassle if you try to return something, even with a receipt. I returned something the other day and had to answer 20 questions before the guy took my tea. I understand they just throw the tea out, but at Sephora, where they also throw the used products out, they NEVER give me hassle .. even without a receipt!

Rachel- I would write an email to the company documenting the day and store and if you know the name of the sales person. It wouldn’t surprise me that they would give you a hard time in the past, but corporate needs to know that their new satisfaction garunteed policy is not being implemented properly.

Babble said

That’s not a bad idea, and I would, but the guy did eventually give me my money back, so I’ll let it go. I guess in his defense, he wanted to make sure I was brewing the tea properly. I didn’t feel like I needed to be hassled about it, though.

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Lynxiebrat said

@Ashley, you might already know, but Tranquilitea’s in Plymouth, Michigan is an excellent store. They sell by the 1 ounce and up, and most of the teas are averaged at $3.50 (At least with the ones I have bought so far.) Neither the owner of the store or the sales associate that I have met are into hard selling, they start off with a customary “Can I help you?” Friendly smile and if you want to browse they are cool with that. If you are looking for something in particular, they do not try to push the most expensive product.
Sorry if this sounds like a Sales Pitch, I promise I don’t work for this store, I am just a huge fan!

Teavana at Somerset Collection (High end mall.)in Troy, Michigan. All the times I’ve been there, busy or slow, the staff has been friendly, not pushy, sales suggestions….they do give, but if you indicate that your not looking for that, they do back off. When getting my tea and have gone over the amount, they ask if that’s ok, and do not fuss when I ask for the exact amount.

chadao said

The employees at this store must not be following the “five times no” rule that the training manual taught them.

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Saryn said

Wow. A little peeking around this thread and I’m getting worried about the prospect of Teaopia stores converting to Teavana…

chadao said

As you should be…

Take it from an employee. At Teavana, all the talk among the staff is about the numbers, not the joy of tea. Managers telling you off because your average ticket is too low (we’re supposed to shoot for a $45 average transaction, and this is TEA for heaven’s sake). Everyone trying to make their sales-per-hour because this determines whether or not we get commission. Promotions based on sales and sales alone.

At the “heaven of tea,” it is not about the tea. It is about the money. It is about every single person being there not to educate the customer on the bliss that tea culture can bring, but to suck every last penny out of every person who walks through the gates.

I realize that I am ranting here, but at this point I am fed up. This “heaven of tea” has been turned into a “hell of greed,” not only for the victims (a.k.a. customers) but for the retail slaves and managers.

Let us come together and mourn the loss of what sounds like was a true utopia of tea.

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I had the, “It’s 2.3 ounces, is that okay?” for the first tea I tried to buy, but when I said “No, I’d like exactly 2 oz please”, she said okay and corrected it and took out the extra in the 2nd one, too, so it was only 2 ounces without me even having to ask. She asked about tins, but I said no I already had them and we moved on. I think the sugar I got she even did just UNDER a half a pound, even though a half a pound was minimum. I’m always pleased when I go to that Teavana, though, they’re not super pushy like some others I’ve been to….

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Nick said
I worked at Teavana for a year and recently quit, it’s true that their employees are pushy but unfortunately thats due to some ridiculously high sales quotas. We had to make sure that cast iron made up 10% of our sales every week as well as selling our indicators as well (Gyokuro Imperial, Monkey Picked Oolong, Silver Pearls, ect). It was always kind of frustrating too because if someone came in and said they wanted to try some green teas, my first initial reaction would be to show them the difference between Chinese and Japanese green teas. But it was always stressed that if someone asked to see a green tea, you would ALWAYS have to show them Gyokuro Imperial first and push it on them heavily. I must admit it, I was quite good at my job and its what got me into loose leaf tea drinking but ever since I’ve left I found I enjoy drinking tea more since I’m not constantly pushing people to buy it all day.
chadao said

Good for you Nick. I must say, as a Teavana employee, I hope to be in your more peaceful position some day :)

Do you still believe that cast iron is the best way to brew tea? For me, it’s more a matter of perspective. Teavana only told us the perks of cast iron, not the downfalls…

Nick said

Nahh, I mean, in a formal serving environment maybe haha but to me the best would be the breville one touch( which I own). You honestly get the connivence of the tea being brewed at precise directions and easy experimentation but also the ability to use it at a simple water heater if you wanted to brew your tea in anything else.

Alex, in your opinion what are the downfalls? I no longer believe its the best. Sure heat retention is great when you are brewing a big pot of oolong/black/pu-erh or herbal that you intend to sip on for the evening. But I am now more likely to brew semi-gonfu style with a two mugs and savor through out the day.

I think all teaware will season with minerals from the tea its just a matter of if you let it (not washing after use)my glass and bone china cups are constantly getting a patina but it doesn’t look very attractive so I wipe it off with a paper towel after washing (its the only thing I’ve found that fully removes it for me). I don’t care what the inside of my cast-iron pot looks like, but my three cast iron cups look pretty awful and I only use them for offerings anymore.

And sure it is durable but parts of it can and do rust, near the handles, anywhere were enamel comes of (it will chip off in small amounts if dropped) and definitely the unpainted trivets oh my goodness!

I like my copper dragon pot as a piece of art and will occasionally use my purple cherry bark one for company since it has such a large basket, but mostly it comes down to art for me. I bought 5 pots for relatives back when I was convinced and only a few of them really use them.

chadao said

Hi Autumn. You already mentioned many of the downfalls that I have in mind. Also, you have to use a ridiculous amount of tea leaves to make a pot, especially for the larger pots, so it is a continuous expense.

tunes&tea said
Nice to hear some of the inside scoop on Teavana.I went once.it was actually my first tea purchase.I fell in love with the Peach Momotaro sample and was efficiently helped toward a purchase(scales tipped heavy to boot).I have no problem with that though,but I was mislead to believe that one of the Hand rolled balls that smelled so heavenly would make an 8 cup pot,not 8 ozs.I wasted several not knowing if I made mistakes with water temp or infuse time.finally I looked on their site and saw I had been decieved by my salesperson.It’s a shame and I was frustrated/discouraged enough that I almost gave up on learning anymore about good tea.Luckily I was steered toward international markets and from there got a foot in the door to real teas.Haven’t looked back and that was six months ago.finding steepster was huge though.

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