Tea Giving: Day 20 (Recovery Blend)

pearl_RecoveryDay20

“You can’t always control what goes on outside,
but you can control what goes on inside.” – Wayne Dyer

We could all use a little help with that. Especially currently. We have a billion things thrown at us at warp speed almost every minute of every day. It can be rough. Granted it’s not “Medieval Times in 546 A.C.” rough, but it’s our Modern Day rough.

Dr. Dyer was right: all we can really do is control how we react to any stressor lobbed at us. And while it really is true that Tea can solve just about any challenge or problem, it’s also true that herbal remedies do the same thing in terms of assisting the body, mind and spirit to help heal itself. If nothing else, it provides a pause which is a powerful and necessary healing tool for all kinds of recovery.

The morning of the 2016 Election Year, we debuted Recovery. It was hours before we knew who would be elected as the new President of the United States so and there was now way we could have known the outcome. There was no partisan hidden agenda or subliminal message to its timing either. Its purpose: to be an “inclusive remedy to help boost wellness for The Left, The Right and the Middle.”  The blend was simply was a reaction to months of people coming to us stressed out and worried at a stratospheric level over what the outcome would be.

Needless to say, we sell a lot of  Recovery. One reason may be because Washington DC daily stress is a bit more unique and concentrated than perhaps other cities. We are barraged with Politics 24/7, we have some epic level traffic jams, have had roughly 30 weekends of rain this year, and no one can ever, ever, ever escape the news because many are part of creating it. Another more important reason for its popularity? It tastes great, is soothing and has a power combination of herbs that assist in helping the body to heal and recover from stress:

  • Ginger root: Boosts immunity, calms an upset stomach, helps with nausea, warming, stimulates circulation.
  • Lemongrass: Detoxes, helps insomnia, boosts immunity, excellent tonic for nerves.
  • Lemon balm: Reduces stress and anxiety, helps promote sleep, eases indigestion.
  • Orange peel: Vitamin C, vitamin A, fiber, pectin.
  • Lemon essential oil: calming, detoxifying, antiseptic, sleep inducing, anti-fungal.
  • Hibiscus: Lowers blood pressure, and boosts immune system.
  • Coriander: High in manganese, iron, magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and protein.
  • Cinnamon: High in antioxidants, lowers blood sugar levels, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal.
  • Rose petals: Immune Boost, improves digestion eases stress and anxiety.
  • Rosehips: Rich in bio flavonoids, pectin, vitamin E + B complex, selenium, manganese.
  • Roasted chicory root: Eases digestive problems, prevents heartburn, reduce arthritis pains, detoxes, boosts immunity, may reduce heart disease.

You really can’t go wrong with a concoction like this. And, don’t let the chicory throw you off. It’s a curve ball for sure, but it adds a something unexpected to the blend that just works in harmony with all of the other ingredients.

Today is Day 20 of our 25 Days of Tea, and a Sunday – the day of the week meant for recovery.  Please enjoy 25% OFF our Recovery Blend by using Code TEAGIVING20 at checkout on the website.

Happy Sipping!
~The Chief Leaf

Tea Giving: Day 20 (Recovery Blend)

Healing Heart Tonic

rose tea

Say Hello to District Blend #02: Brookland!

Welcome to the little hamlet where Pearl Fine Teas was born almost 11 years ago. To honor this lovely part of Washington DC, I’m finally introducing the newest member to the Pearl Fine Teas family: Healing Heart Tonic.


But first, a little about Brookland:

“Brookland evolved in the early 1870s, when the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad ran its western branch line through this area. The rail line was situated alongside a fine 1840 Greek Revival farmhouse known as the Brooks Mansion, home of Colonel Jehiel Brooks. In the late 1880s, Catholic University was established just north of Colonel Brooks’ farm. Developers quickly responded, creating a new Washington neighborhood beyond the central city and taking its name from Colonel Brooks. The university provided a centerpiece for a large number of Catholic institutions.

In the early days, Brookland, with its single-family, wood-frame houses in styles ranging from Queen Anne to Craftsman – attracted government workers, Smithsonian Institution scientists, and people of many ethnic backgrounds who shared the Catholic faith. In the 1930s, Brookland attracted affluent African Americans looking for an area that was not restricted to whites only. Of particular note are 13 International style houses designed by Hilyard Robinson and Howard H. Mackey, two of Washington’s most prominent African American architects of the era. Robinson was responsible for the Ralph Bunche house, 1510 Jackson Street, NE, built for the Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Many other prominent black Washingtonians made their home here, including the entertainer Pearl Bailey, the poet Sterling Brown, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Robert Weaver, Senator Edward Brooke, and historian Rayford Logan. Brookland enjoys an interesting history of civic activism. Most recently it rescued the Brooks Mansion, which still stands near the Brookland Metro station, a symbol of this community and its heritage.”


This neighborhood is located in the Northeast section of DC and is known informally as “Little Rome” due to the influence of the Catholic Church and home to Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

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Rose garden at the Franciscan Monestery

I first discovered this little enclave back in 2003 – a hidden gem, devoid of trend and pretension. I loved the diversity of people, the loving warm-hearted neighbors, the chirping birds, the stunning green spaces with gardens galore – and the gorgeous refuge of the Franciscan Monastery where you often see a Monk or Nun strolling in deep contemplation and reflection. A quiet walk through the rose garden instantly infuses a sense of peace and puts all things in perfect perspective. As a member of the Franciscan Garden Guild, I’ve spent time in the greenhouse, helping with the famous yearly Plant Sale and even learned how to extract honey from the bees they keep.

My neighborhood has inspired me in so many ways – mostly notably with the profound friendships I’ve made living here that have touched and warmed my heart – specifically my good friend Bill. He is no longer with us, but I had the privilege of being his next door neighbor for 14 years.  We had a lot of fun during those years and he taught me a thing or 10 about everything from how to install a light fixture to how to navigate some of life’s steeper slopes. It was a joyful friendship and one I deeply cherish. It’s also why I wanted to create a blend that reflected and honored that special friendship – which was born right here in Brookland.

Bill was a Deacon in his Church; He loved roses, and chewing on lemon grass and good ole’ fashioned ginger root. The Brookland Healing Heart Tonic is a blend of  those 3 ingredients and is totally caffeine free, healing, and heart warming. Besides the emotional healing benefits of this tisane, there are also many actual health benefits to this wellness tonic:


herbal rose tea.

Rose: 
• Naturally uplifting (especially for those prone to feeling down or depressed)
• Regulates hormone levels (how the neurotransmitters in our brain are regulated)
• Can help to improve liver function and increase urination (natural diuretic)
• Releases toxins from the body
• Good source of Vitamin C (improves immunity)
• May also help treat arthritis, menstrual cramps, cold/flu, digestive issues, and insomnia


Lemon Grass. Cymbopogon citratus. Capim Limao, Santo.Lemon grass:
• Traditionally used to help control and normalize heart rate and for high blood pressure.
• Used for the treatment of depression and anxiety
• Anti-bacterial and Anti-fungal
• Loaded with Vitamin C (improves immunity)
• Citral is the active constituent and lemon grass has the highest concentration of it compared to any other plant in the world. Citral has antioxidant and anti-tumor properties that both benefit the brain.


Isolated gingerGinger:
• Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Fungal
• Boots Immunity
• Aids digestion and relief from nausea
• Improves heart disease risk factors
• May lower Cholesterol
• May have powerful anti-diabetic properties
• Can lead to significant reductions in LDL cholesterol and blood triglyceride level (similar extent as the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin)
• Studies show its effective at reducing symptoms of osteoarthritis
• Can protect against age-related damage to the brain (Alzheimers) and can also improve brain function in elderly women



Healing Heart Tonic (District Blend #02: Brookland)
will debut at markets on:

• Saturday, May 5th: Falls Church Farmers Market, VA  (8am – Noon)
• Saturday, May 5th:  Monroe Street Farmers Market, Brookland DC  (9am – 1:00 pm)
• Sunday, May 6th:  Central Farm Market in Bethesda, MD (9am – 1:30pm)
• You can also purchase online in the Tea Shop here.

“There is a wisdom of the head, and a wisdom of the heart.” ~ Charles Dickens
“Happy Sipping!” ~The Chief Leaf

 

Healing Heart Tonic

25 Days of Tea: Day 13 (Full Moon Water)

fullmoonteapot2As I was thinking about what tea to discuss for today, it occurred to me that talking about rituals around tea seemed timely. So, I’m detouring during our 25 Days of Tea adventure to talk about a ritual of making Full Moon Water during this full moon phase which is today, December 13, 2016. It’s the last Super Moon of the year called the Full Cold Moon, and right before the Winter Solstice. Seems like perfect timing.

Websters definition of ritual is:
1 : of or relating to rites or a ritual :  ceremonial <a ritual dance>
2 :  according to religious law <ritual purity>
3 :  done in accordance with social custom or normal protocol <ritual handshakes> <ritual background checks>

But I like this one: “a sequence of activities involving gestures, words, and objects, performed in a sequestered place, and performed according to set sequence.”

Rituals often bring a sense of comfort, serenity and peace. (Who doesn’t want that). And as we know, rituals and tea go hand in hand. It dates back thousands of years in almost every tea culture. The Japanese tea ceremony, the Gong Fu Chinese tea ceremony, Korean tea ceremony, even the British “ceremony” of teatime affords us the gift of being present and connecting to those we are sharing tea with, our surroundings, nature and most importantly: ourselves. You can read a very interesting article by Richard Carrico in Cultural Anthropology that outlines the concept of ritual. He writes that “Ritual is in fact an inevitable component of culture, extending from the largest-scale social and political processes to the most intimate aspects of our self-experience.”

One ritual that may not be widely known is that of charging water. And since water is as important as tea, this seemed very interesting to me. I’m not sure where it originated (it may be Shaman) and it may sound bit hocus pocus but what the heck. Things thrive under the warmth and light of the sun, so why not the moon? Let’s give it a shot tonight during this last Supermoon and see if we can infuse some good positive vibes into our cuppa and ourselves.

Here’s how it works:

The idea is to take fresh water (without any chemicals) and place it in a glass or crystal bowl and set it either on your window sill to catch the moon rays, or outside (covered with a light plastic wrap to keep out bugs and debris). You leave it there all night. The water is said to be charged in the morning with positive energy having collected the light from the full moon. Some say it even tastes different. Let’s find out by making Full Moon Water tonight and then making our tea in it tomorrow.  Perhaps we’ll feel energized. Perhaps calm and serene. Or maybe we won’t feel anything, but we will have tried something different that involves tea, and that in itself could turn into a ritual: always trying something new.

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Recovery Herbal Blend

Though I already wrote a post about our Recovery Blend in November and the components of the blend, I’m going to offer it up for today’s special since an herbal remedy seems to be right on target for our full moon water experiment.

If you are interested in giving it a try, please visit the Pearl Fine Teas tea shop today and use code: 25TEAS13 at checkout to get 25% off our Recovery Blend – today only!

If you have a particular tea ritual, I’d love to hear about it.

Happy Sipping!
-The Chief Leaf

#tealove
#teaunites
#teasaveslives
#sipteafeelhappy
#TeaTent
#teainDC
#teainVA
#teainMD
#25Teas
#fullmoon
#supermoon
#recoveryblend
#herbal
#tisane

#pearlfineteas

 

 

 

25 Days of Tea: Day 13 (Full Moon Water)

Recovery

votedteacup

Trekking down to our local school to cast a vote in this historic election is both an honor and a privilege not taken lightly. This election more then ever, we give thanks to that one thing that kept us sane over the last few months: TEA.

It feels like a hundred years ago rather then 8 when Obama and McCain were battling it out for the Presidency in 2008 – when we all thought that election was intense. Twitter was “newish” and we were all trying that thing called tweeting. I remember sitting at the computer trying to figure out this new medium and fired off a tweet into the void as Pearl Fine Teas and asked: “If Obama and McCain were tea blends what would they be?

To our surprise, people actually responded.

Winter 2009 Tea A MagazineLong story short… what happened was an interesting chain of events that culminated in a contest where we took votes and suggestions, and then blended 2 teas to represent each candidate. We announced the winner on Nov 4, with fulfillment the week of the inauguration.  Through all that new tweeting I met Jack Cheng  when he was part of Steepster.  Jack reached out and showed me 2 illustrations he had done of each one of our blends made entirely out of tea leaves (you can see an early blogpost here.) They were and still are fantastic, and ultimately ended up on the cover of TEA. A MAGAZINE.  I noticed recently through a feed on Facebook that Adagio Teas created an illustration of Trump and Bernie paying homage to our Obama-McCain!

This time around I wondered (like last time) what the blends for the candidates might be for this election with Trump as the (R) candidate and Hillary, the (D) candidate and America’s first potential female president. So much has changed these 8 years in the U.S. and in American Government. At the moment we are a nation divided, and its been a brutal campaign. With all the unusual shenanigans that went into this election year we all traveled a very long road to get us to today: November 8th. Regardless who wins tonight, there is no doubt that we will need support for the days, weeks, months and 4 years ahead.

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Recovery Infusion Blend (Organic/Kosher)

So this time around in honor of the 2016 Election Year, Pearl Fine Teas will offer an  (Election) Recovery Blend: An inclusive blend with health benefits to help: the Left, the Right and the Middle.

Here is a breakdown of some of the health benefits from our newest caffeine-free infusion:

 

• Roasted chicory root: Eases digestive problems, prevents heartburn, reduce arthritis pains, detoxes, boosts immunity, may reduce heart disease.
• Ginger root:
Boosts immunity, calms an upset stomach, helps with nausea, warming, stimulates circulation.
• Lemongrass:
Detoxes, helps insomnia, boosts immunity, excellent tonic for nerves.
• Lemon balm:
Reduces stress and anxiety, helps promote sleep, eases indigestion.
• Orange peel:
Vitamin C, vitamin A, fiber, pectin.
• Lemon essential oil:
calming, detoxifying, antiseptic, sleep inducing, anti-fungal.
• Hibiscus:
Lowers blood pressure, and boosts immune system.
• Coriander:
High in manganese, iron, magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and protein.
• Cinnamon:
High in antioxidants, lowers blood sugar levels, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal.
• Rose petals:
Immune Boost, improves digestion eases stress and anxiety.
Rosehips: Rich in bio flavonoids, pectin, vitamin E + B complex, selenium, manganese
.

We’ll offer this blend at the TeaTent and online soon on the new Pearl Fine Teas website.

It’s still early in the day as this post goes live, and we won’t know who our next President will be, but our hope is that the road to recovery is a short one and that the great divide will heal sooner then later.  No matter what happens we are grateful that one thing is certain:  there will always be TEA.

#TeaUnites
#teasaveslives
#tealove
#sipteafeelhappy
#teainDC
#teainVA
#teainMD
#TeaTent
#TeaGirl

Recovery

White Tea and Caffeine

Im pausing and digressing for a moment instead of posting Day 4 of my Taiwan/Japan tea adventure. Here is why…

There seems to be a lot of misinformation out there on white tea and its caffeine content. Most people, it seems, believe that it has the lowest. This is simply not true. It can be quite a challenge as a Tea Purveyor to tell people that white tea does, in fact, have a very high amount of caffeine. But because we can do a quick Google search and find information to the contrary, people believe it. Here is an example: http://www.whiteteacentral.com/caffeinewhitetea.html

My first encounter with the “white tea – caffeine” debate was a few years back while I was at an expo. A gentleman had come up to my booth and asked to buy some white tea because he only drank teas without caffeine and herbals because of his religion. He was a Mormon. I tried to explain to him that it did have a lot and that he should stick to herbals. He insisted he was right and went home to look it up on the web, came back the next day and said I was wrong. What could I do? Argue with a Mormon and force him to buy herbals?

My next experience was recently at a local shopping mall. I stepped into a tea store to grab some hot tea. It was around 7pm and I needed something hot and herbal. I tried a couple of samples and decided on one but asked them not to include the white tea that it was blended with. I only wanted the Rooibos blend. Here is how this played out:

The salesgirl, who had extensive training in tea (she said a week) said: “Why not have the white tea? It will relax you.”
I said, “If its white tea, it has a lot of caffeine. I doubt Ill be relaxed.”

She said, “No white tea has the lowest caffeine of all the teas because of how its made. The steaming takes the caffeine out.”
I seriously just blinked in disbelief.

I said, “I’ll just take the herbal infusion.”
She said, “Are you sure about that? You wont get any health benefits from just herbal tea.”
I said, “Why is that?”
She said, “Because herbal teas only have vitamin C.”

I felt like Daffy Duck, looking at the camera with that stare of disbelief. I said, “I think Im fine with just having Vitamin C tonight.” I glanced up at the wall of tea and asked her what the most expensive one was.  She said that it was a Monkey Picked tea and brought it over for me to smell.

I said, “Ah yes, Monkey Picked…”
She said, “Yes the reason its called that is because Monkey Picked means that its won championships.”

The Monkey Picked comment I’ll just skip for another blog post and just keep on track with the White Tea – Caffeine Debate. I decided to go the one man I knew would have the correct information: Nigel Melican of TeaCraft. My question to him was:

“Nigel, what is the latest word on the caffeine levels in white tea? Im getting bombarded with questions and conflicting information about this. So many are saying its the lowest. I remember you saying its quite high. Can you help?”

His response is below. Take heed people. Nigel knows his stuff.

“No, despite those who would prefer otherwise, white tea is the highest in caffeine content – the younger and smaller and fresher the bud and the less processing – the higher the caffeine, whatever the color of the tea. It’s facts. It’s sci…ence. It’s indisputable!

Richard Enticott (President & CEO of Martin Bauer US, Inc.) spoke at World Tea Expo 2010 and presented data for caffeine content based on 30 years of caffeine analyses of tea (tens of thousands of actual analyses on actual tea). He says caffeine in China white needles tea is typically over 7% – and this matches my own findings.For another treatment of caffeine with some typical amounts in black tea see:

For a comparison of black, green and white tea caffeine – the best single reference I know is “Characterization of White Tea – Comparison to green and black tea” Y Hilal and U Engelhardt. J. Verbr. Lebensm. 2 (2007) 414-421. The authors are in the Dept. Food Chem, University of Braunshweig, Germany. Around 160 tea brands were sampled from across the German retail market  They show for caffeine:

  • Black tea (50 teas) average 3.5% (range 2.0 – 5.4%)
  • Green tea set 1 (50 teas) average 3.4% (range 1.5 – 5.2%)
  • Green tea set 2 (30 teas) average 2.9% (range 1.7 – 2.9%)
  • White tea (30 teas) average 4.9% (range 3.4 – 5.7%)
A rare website that has accurate data is: http://ratetea.net/topic/caffeine-content-of-tea/21/ on this basis I commend it to you. – Nigel at Teacraft
Thank you Nigel!
White Tea and Caffeine