How We Choose
We don't look for the same teas and coffees year after year. Like master sommeliers, we search for the finest. The next new thing.
Of course, we rely on our extensive network of experts, including a tea vendor who happens to have an anthropology degree from Yale and whose passion for tea and Chinese heritage led her to the study of specialty teas. She regularly travels to China to unearth new flavors, and on her last trip, she found 10 new teas for us.
Every so often, we make our finds via sheer serendipity. For example, a friend, customer, and award-winning artist came into our tasting room recently to help us with our packaging. We tasted teas, talked, and discovered that his brother, who lives in Hong Kong, sources premium and aged tea bricks of extraordinary quality. We placed our order.
Once we procure the teas, we have "cupping sessions" with our tasting panel. We evaluate the dry and wet leaves and the steeped tea, focusing on how we can extend our inventory flavor profiles. Then we choose the standouts and share our favorites with our customers at formal tasting events as well as our Saturday open houses.