52teas said

Ultra Premium Flavored Teas

I’ve been thinking a bit lately about launching a new brand (because three just isn’t enough—lol) devoted entirely to ultra premium flavored teas. Nothing as extensive as 52teas or anything, but a few flavors of some really high-end teas. Stuff that no one else is flavoring. I’m thinking like Razzleberry Gyokuro with real freeze-dried raspberries and blackberries and organic flavors. Some high-end white teas and oolongs, all subtly flavored and blended with the absolute best ingredients I can find.

I was just curious if you guys think there is a market for this. These teas would definitely be considerably more expensive than our $8.99 pouches. Some of the teas I’m considering would probably retail for up to maybe $60 for 2oz.

I’m wondering if there is any interest in flavored teas of this caliber, and what, if anything, might be your upper limit for a price you might pay for a tea you really want.

Please don’t misunderstand, I have ALWAYS and will continue to try to make our teas as affordable as possible, but I think it would be great to create some blends out of some really amazing teas, but because I’m not a big wheel in the tea industry, my costs on those premium teas is going to be high. And I don’t want to do it if I don’t have enough interest.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

37 Replies
Cheryl said

Funny, I just read the thread about unflavored vs. flavored teas thread, with a poster (derek?) saying that no one would (dare) flavor high quality teas … then clicked on this thread. Perhaps he will show up shortly (ha).

My personal opinion is that $60/2 oz. is way out of my reach (just as a bottle of Frederic Malle Carnal Flower is, but that’s my other obsession…fragrance…ps a 100ml bottle is $320). I wouldn’t even want to go near a sample of this tea, in fear that I’d love it (which I probably would), but couldn’t afford it. 2 oz. of tea would last how long?

But I’m a newbie to the world of tea. I’m just learning and trying to understand differences. So others will probably have much more to say : )

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Brian said

My initial reaction is if I am buying a tea that is $480 per pound, I want to taste the tea. Any kind of flavoring will nullify all the nuances and wonderful qualities that make a premium tea premium.

Not saying this couldn’t be done and I’m sure there is a market for it. I think you would need to use premium flavoring also because otherwise the overall experience would be severely impacted.

One random idea I was just thinking of is you could package the tea and flavor components separately- let the tea drinker try everything separately and then they can blend at will.

@Brian, your random idea wouldn’t work, in my opinion. Coming from someone who has flavored and blended tea … it’s not as easy as mixing/blending components.

I agree LiberTeas….also to Frank—As you know the loose tea market accounts for about 3 to 5% of all tea consumed. I would focus on making your existing three markets better. I really do not think there is a strong enough market for premium flavoring blended with say, premium Gyokuros or Tie Guan Yins or Whites for that matter. You could of course test market one or let customers fill out a survey about this on your website.

Brian said

I wasn’t really saying deconstruct all the flavor components and package those individually- you probably don’t want the end user to have to deal with several small vials of extract/oils/flavorings to add on their own…. and then having them tumble everything together and wait blah blah blah.

But you can flavor the inclusions and let the consumer add different amounts of that at will. The focus here would be on premium tea with premium flavored inclusions.

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Hmm… I don’t know how I feel about this idea.

I’ve enjoyed just about every tea that I’ve tried from you Frank, but, I personally don’t know that I’d be willing to pay such a premium price for flavored tea. I’ve paid high prices for teas before, but, usually it is just yellow teas that I’m willing to fork out that kind of money for, and I don’t know that I’d want my yellow tea flavored. I like the flavor of yellow tea on its own.

I’d probably want to try whatever you put out, but, I wouldn’t be able to afford it. And that would make me sad.

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SimplyJenW said

Too rich for me. I will have to enjoy my premium teas and my flavored teas separately for the most part. I have not ever spent anywhere near those numbers on any tea.

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If you’re talking about a tea like a gyokuru, I can’t imagine why anyone would drink it flavored when it’s soooo good on its’ own. I do like flavored teas as dessert teas and novelty items but when it comes to higher price tags I just want to taste the premium teas to see what they are really like. I don’t really want a flavor enhanced milk oolong, for example which IMO tastes artificial for the price tag.

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I can’t afford it and personally don’t think I’d want to spend that much on flavored tea even if I had the money. I’d probably want to try it out of sheer curiosity but I would go into it knowing it was my first and last time drinking it.

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I just wanted to toss in my 2cents… Even though I LOVE flavored tea (and just had 52teas.com open trying to decide what I wanted my first FULL bag to be… ooh or maybe I’ll get the Valentine’s Sampler…. Facebooking Frank now…) OKAY back to my comment… Even though I 100% ADORE/am addicted to flavored tea, I am also cheap and poor and have put off paying $9 so far for a bag of tea because of said cheapskateness. Never in my life, no matter how rich/addicted to tea/crazy I get, would I pay $60 for 2oz of tea. BUT I’m also relatively new to tea (about 2 years since my addiction first took hold?) so maybe my tune will change as I age…?

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Dinosara said

I would pay a premium for very high quality flavored teas (if they really blew me away), but not that much of a premium. $20/2oz, maybe, but not much more than that, and it would have to be amazing. As an example Verdant Teas’ Alchemy blends use their normal high quality pure teas as bases, and they average about $15/2oz. Granted none of those teas that he uses for bases come close to $60/2oz regularly, so I don’t know what kind of tea you’re thinking of, but they’re all very well regarded on their own. I understand that you might not have his kind of sourcing setup, but that’s the kind of competition you’d be against, at least for me.

If you could use a tea base that is slightly less premium but still very high quality and offer it with subtle flavors for a lower price, you’d still be way above many flavored teas.

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Depending on price and my budget at the time of the purchase, I might consider it… at least we know the quality would be top-notch, coming from Frank, the Wizard of Teas! :)

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Uniquity said

I would not. Unfortunately the 8.99 cost of 52teas with the new (small but still there) shipping prices to Canada too high as it is for my tea budget, especially factoring in that I never know if I will like the tea. I’m sticking local for my flavoured teas for now, and am not really interested in the idea of any tea that costs $60/2 ounce, flavoured or otherwise.

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