When I was 24 I went off to India by myself and travelled for 9 months. I met lots of precious friends and had some amazing experiences, and I loved that amid all the chaos Indian people come together throughout the day over many cups of tea.
Later my partner Adam and I taught in Japan and really developed a taste for green tea. A shot of matcha before taking a frantic class of 6 years olds was our regular pick me up! Being in a school tea was such a part of our daily working life, prepared so beautifully and thoughtfully using quality leaves.
It was all pretty impressive, and we landed back in Auckland when the specialty coffee scene was really taking off, and no-one was thinking about good tea.
There’s so much exciting stuff happening with tea right now. What we are seeing is this massive growing interest in quality and provenance- it’s very in line with the third wave coffee movement and bean to bar chocolate. Sometimes it does feel like we’ve been kept in the dark for a very long time about what quality tea actually is, so there’s certainly some work to be done to move things on from the world of processed tea-bags and flavoured blends.