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david said

hello steepster! new to the community!

Hello all,
I’d like to introduce myself as I recently found this website. I’ve been a tea drinker for a while and I am glad to see a community around folks that enjoy it as much as I do. I’d like to get to know some of the typical members and what they are brewing these days, so here’s my question to Steepster users:

1. Why do you drink tea?
2. When did you start drinking tea?
3. Where do you typically buy your tea from and why?

How about you all?

25 Replies

Greetings and welcome to Steepster. It’s a great site.

Why do you drink tea? I started drinking tea regularly because I could no longer drink coffee as it was making me sick. I soon discovered that I prefer tea to coffee, and became very passionate about drinking it.

When did you start drinking tea? Well, I started drinking tea about 20 years ago, but only started drinking it as a serious, regular drinker (drinking up to 12 – 15 cups a day on average) about 10 years ago, about the same time that I started flavoring and blending tea to try to recapture the flavor of a favorite chocolate tea blend that was no longer available to me. It took quite a few tries and misses with that until I got it right, and by that time I had amassed so much tea that I started a business selling my blends. I no longer run a business (I have since learned that I’m a better artist than a business person), but because I was running a business I felt it was important for me to discover all I could about tea, and the best way to do that is to taste, taste taste. The more I tasted the more I liked.

Where do you typically buy your tea from and why? Well, I probably shop with 52Teas more than any other, because I’m a subscriber to their tea of the week program and since I get a weekly tea from them I definitely buy more from them. I buy from them because I love their unique flavors. I also buy from other tea companies, whenever I come across a tea company with something that intrigues me, I usually buy. Other companies that I like to shop with: Lupicia (I’ve enjoyed their tea, they carry one of my favorite Earl Grey teas and they have very fast shipping), Andrews & Dunham (I always enjoy the tea I receive from this Damn Fine Tea company, my only complaint is that they do not release new teas very often), Teas Etc (awesome customer service and that is key with me. If I don’t like the way I’m treated as a customer, I won’t ever go back to a company, no matter how good the products are.)

How about you? I’d love to hear more about one of our newest members!

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Welcome, dpspaceman!

Great questions.

1. Why do you drink tea? For a multitude of reasons. I started drinking green tea to help calm my overactive mind. Green tea (and all tea, to a degree) has theanine in it, which helps to calm and relax me. I also drink it as an alternative to coffee and soda. Lastly, I drink it for the pure enjoyment of it. I am really loving artisan Chinese red teas and flavored rooibos teas at the moment.

2. When did you start drinking tea? I started drinking loose-leaf tea a little over a year ago (Dragon Well was my first loose leaf tea). Before that, I don’t remember EVER having had loose leaf tea, although I would occasionally drink iced tea, and plenty of bagged tea in the winter.

3. Where do you typically buy your tea from and why? I have tried most of the places in my mid-sized town, and they all fall short in one way or another (by my standards, anyway). So, I buy almost all of it online.
Verdant Tea (the best I have ever had, on the pricy side, but still worth it);
Tea Trekker (they have a great selection of spring green teas for very reasonable prices, but I don’t care for their shipping policy, so I only order once a year);
Den’s Tea (not inexpensive, but still very reasonable prices for Japaneses tea);
Teavana (Only when their tea is 75% off during their year end sale);
Culinary Teas (great prices on flavored teas);
There are also lots of great shops that have a presence out here like Life in Teacup, Teavivre, and 52Teas, just to name a few.

I echo LiberTEAS request: Tell us about you!

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in order:
I drink tea because I am cold all the time and can’t really tolerate cold drinks. Also, it is yummy and comes in lots of kinds to try.
I’ve always ordered tea at restaurants but only started making the loose stuff at home around a year ago, and started buying a lot of different kinds in the fall.
I buy my tea from a bunch of companies: david’s tea and 52teas for flavored stuff (although some of the david’s unflavored selections are good too! kenyan tinderet for life!) and verdant tea and asha tea house primarily for straight tea.

here is a question for you: what is your favorite kind of tea?

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Angrboda said

Welcome, I hope you’ll like it here.

1. Because I like it. Simple as that. Some people will go on an on about health benefits and what not, but I don’t really care about that. I like tea, I like the diversity of it, I like the smell of it and I like the taste of it. That’s all I need.

2. From when I was a child. Back then it was in bags and not until around 2000 I started the gradual switch to loose leaf as I learned more and more about the subject. I think I was fully on loose leaf some three or four years later. It was a slow process for me.

3. I very much like to shop with AC Perchs, but that’s a Danish company and although they do ship abroad, their rates are horrendous, even within Europe. I also enjoy Nothing But Tea and TeaSpring very much. I think those would be my Big Three.

I can also recommend Verdant Tea for some very high quality stuff. Chi of Tea has some nice things too. 52teas have some imaginative flavoured blends, although I don’t think I’ll be shopping there too much in the future (it’s a tax and customs issue. Only one out of the last five things I’ve bought there have not had an extra customs bill on it. It gets old.) At the moment I’m waiting for parcels from Les Palais des Thes and Teavivre, first time I’m shopping with both of them.

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Welcome to Steepster! And boy, did you ask some nice questions…

1. I drink tea for a simple reason – I love the taste! I’ve never enjoyed the flavor of coffee, but the flavor of tea has always been appealing to me. Additionally, especially more recently, I will drink it throughout the work day to stay awake (or wake up at all) and to keep my brain going.

2. The first teas I drank were probably Bigelow Orange and Spice and similar options back when I was a kid. I remember raiding the “tea drawer” in the kitchen for the orange and spice around Christmas time in particular. As I got older, I turned to black tea blends and some basic bag Darjeelings. While I studied abroad in Scotland for 4 months, I only increased this tendency, as well as my taste for adding cream and sugar. It wasn’t until I was home again and my brother started bringing back some pretty diverse Chinese teas that my love and appreciation for tea really began blossoming into what it is today.

3. Right now, I don’t buy my tea much at all. I’ve gotten some from Life In Teacup, which are absolutely delicious. I’ve also tried some from a couple of other companies so far, but my primary source at the moment is my brother living in China. I visited once and brought some back that I’ve been slowly working through, and he just sent a care package filled with tea that I received just last week. So I’m really fortunate for the time being. But I’m looking forward to trying out more of the tea vendors available so I can expand my tasting horizons even more!

How awesome to have a connection in China! I am jealous!

I’m happy to share the wealth if you’d like me to send you a few samples of what he’s sent me (or I carried back, or he carried back, hahaha).

PM me if you’d like!

THANK YOU! That’s very generous of you. But, can I take a rain check? I have sooooo many teas sitting around here and there that I have yet to try, I won’t allow myself to even think about swapping just yet (or even accepting samples). Maybe this spring or summer though?

Again, very kind of you to offer. I will look forward to reading your reviews about them, though. : – )

Rain check it is! No guarantee how many will be left until summer when he comes home for a visit again. ;)

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Ian said

Hello! Welcome to the site, I too have just barely joined but I’ve already learned a lot and I’m discovering all kinds of new teas!

1. Why do you drink tea?
I know it sounds cheesy but I started drinking tea a lot to impress a girl I liked at the time. I’m relatively new to the scene, but I’ve already fallen in love with the community that it brings and the drink itself. One of my closest friends is also addicted to tea, and she has been a really big impact on my obsession. It’s also nice to know that I am an expert in my group of friends (not necessarily here though, lol) and can help them out and give them recommendations.

2. When did you start drinking tea?
Well obviously I’ve been drinking tea my whole life, but I started about a year and a half ago, again to impress a girl that I liked who was OBSESSED with tea. I started with just low quality stuff but then I started to browse more high quality teas and ever since I’ve been hooked. I learned a lot from StumbleUpon, actually, and that helped further my interest. I was obsessed with coffee for a long time but it started messing with my stomach, so that’s another reason I’ve moved on to tea.

3. Where do you typically buy your tea from and why?
I usually get my tea from physical stores. Harney and Sons is one of my favorite producers, so I usually buy their teas at my local grocery store and at Barnes and Noble, where they have a bigger selection. Because of money and the fact that I don’t usually shop online, I don’t have a LOT of high quality teas at my house, and they’re mostly just cheap stuff like Bigelow and Lipton and Celestial Seasonings, but I do splurge every once and a while at a local Health Food store that offers a lot of kinds of tea.

I hope you enjoy being here!

Two points for honesty, that’s awesome.

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david said

Thanks for the warm welcome everyone! I figured I’d share the reasons I’ve started drinking tea as well.

1. Why do you drink tea?
Today basically because I enjoy the flavors and enjoy it. It’s also a very easy and healthy alternative to coffee, especially in the corporate environment that I work in. I basically have boiling water from the coffee machine whenever I want. Makes it i

2. When did you start drinking tea?
I started drinking tea HEAVILY about a year ago. I forgot what I was looking for exactly, but I think it was because my girlfriend had suggested tea, i stumbled on adagio teas. From there I purchased some samples and one of those infuser/machines to brew tea easily. So I started for this reason.

3. Where do you buy your tea from? I vary as well from adagio, to teavana, and recently tried some mighty leaf. These can be a bit pricey at times though.

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Uniquity said

Welcome!

1 – I drink tea because I like it. It’s not an alternative to anything else (though I’m not fond of coffee), I just really enjoy tea in a variety of ways. My main liquids are cold water and hot tea, so the diversity of tea is fabulous.

2 – I’ve always drank bagged orange pekoe, but I started drinking loose tea about 2 years ago now, and on a massive scale. I’ve toned down a lot since the summer heat, but it’s still my treat du jour in addition to water.

3 – The bulk of my tea has been purchased from Davids Tea, though there is a fair amount of 52Teas and Sawadee Tea House (local) in there as well. I have numerous samples from different companies, thanks to the box o tea that LIberTeas sells on teatra.de and I like to try new stuff so there and bits and bobs from everywhere, really.

Happy tea!

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Welcome to Steepster! I found this site pretty recently too, and it’s a fantastic resource. I hope you enjoy your time here!

1. I drink tea because…well, I always wanted to be a tea drinker because I liked the idea of it. I had tried fruity bagged teas, and I was always disappointed that they didn’t taste like the pure fruit that they smelled like, but I moved on to trying other types. Probably the most instrumental players in getting me turned on to tea were Aveda’s Comforting tea (which opened my eyes to tea that tasted good!) and my tea-drinking friends I met in college. And now I drink tea because I love the taste, love the meditative state I enter with every sip, love learning about it, and love the beautiful cups and bowls I drink it from. I do it because it makes me so happy.

2. I started drinking tea regularly in the fall of 2010, right when I started college. It’s only gone up since then!

3. I usually buy my tea from:
TeaSource- My favorite local tea shop and the one that really helped me get into loose tea. They have several lovely physical shops (I’ve only been to the Highland Park one in St. Paul), prompt shipping from their website, and a beautiful catalog that comes out around the end of the year. Great selection.
Verdant Tea- I discovered Verdant a few months ago and am in love with the company. I’ve learned so much more about tea growing and tea culture from my visits to the website and books that I’ve gotten since getting connected with David’s business. Beautiful, delicious, artisan teas with compelling stories. I’m in college, so I have to somewhat limit my purchases from Verdant, but everything is of such high quality that it’s worth the money spent. David really cares about his customers and helped me find a beautiful Yixing pot from Mandala Teas, a shop owned by a friend of his in Winona.
Others- I’ll get the odd Celestial Seasonings/52Teas (waiting on my first order to arrive)/etc. I have ordered from Teavana earlier on, but I don’t really get anything from them now.

Enjoy! It’s great to have you.

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Dinosara said

Welcome to the community! Always glad to have new people around. My answers…

1. I fell in love with all the flavors. I don’t drink tea to replace anything and really before I drank tea I didn’t drink anything during the times I now drink tea (I rarely drink it with meals, though iced tea has replaced water at lunch for me). I guess I’m a lot better hydrated these days.

2. I started drinking tea at first in college, but I never really drank it regularly until after a trip to London a couple of years ago. I had actually almost completely stopped drinking tea for a few years before that… can you believe I didn’t even realize that Earl Grey was different that any other unflavored English blend? I ordered it randomly to wake up and I fell in love with the flavor.

3. I buy tea from a lot of places, and swap a lot, so I have a lot of different teas from different companies in my collection. Most of the tea I have bought from Harney & Sons, but my must-have tea list also includes teas from Verdant, Naivetea, Dammann Freres, The Tea Spot, American Tea Room, thepuriTea and Ovation.

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