Sourcing Black-Owned Teas (Intro)

If you’ve been here for a period of time, you know I love a good cup of tea. The last time I wanted to order tea from the shop in Georgia where I used to get tea, I wasn’t able to. I don’t know if they shut down temporarily or permanently, but I had to shop elsewhere. The guy I was “talking to” at the time sent me a link for The Tea Spot and I ordered a few sample teas from there that I really like. I haven’t finished most of the samples I ordered because I’ve been obsessed with chai in the mornings the last couple of months and most of the teas I ordered contain caffeine so they are not bedtime friendly.

Just like adding books to my reading list before finishing the ones already on it, I want to explore more tea shops. This time, I’d like to find a couple of really good Black-owned tea companies and see if I can find a new favorite black and/or green tea. I will be sharing my process and reviews here and in video form, so you can watch or read as you prefer.

I found a website recently that has a good list of Black-owned tea companies, and will be conducting my search from there. Finding local Black-owned tea companies is a different challenge… one I will tackle at a later time. For this search, I will be assessing the following (give or take):

*Website design/usability
*Tea selections
*Detailed descriptions and ingredient lists
*Affordability (tea prices and shipping costs)
*Availability & sizes of samples
*Shipping times
*Brewing instructions/measurements on packaging
*Effect (calming, energizing, etc.)

It will certainly take some time to work through this, so it’ll be a couple of weeks before we have our final decisions, but stay tuned to findo out whether I discover a new favorite tea and/or a new favorite shop.

Until next time,

Happy reading!

All the Black Teas!

Okay, not all of them, but a few.

For the past few years I’ve been drinking Publix brand black tea bags even though all my other teas have been loose leaf teas from Tea Clan. A couple weeks ago I was running low on black tea and decided to switch to loose leaf once and for all…but I had no idea what kind of black tea was in the Publix tea bags.

I decided that I’d not only try a few different black teas to see what I liked best, but that I’d also try a local tea shop to compare their teas to the ones I order from Tea Clan. Well, long story short, no one was manning the tea shoppe when I arrived (it’s part of a brewery/market setup and every other place was open) so I had couldn’t try their teas. Instead, I ordered three different black teas from Tea Clan—Assam, Ceylon Tea, and English Breakfast.

I am a tea drinker, not an aficionado, so my understanding of the subtleties between these three is incredibly limited. I will say, though, that Assam was my favorite and Ceylon my least favorite. I made all three teas at the same time and in the same way—I even used a measuring spoon and measuring cup to make sure the amounts of tea and water were the same in each mug.

They were all pretty smooth, but the Assam tea was smoothest to me, and not bitter at all. The Ceylon was the lightest tea, and it also left a bitter taste in my mouth that I wasn’t fond of. The English Breakfast was probably the strongest in flavor—it was also a little bitter, but not terribly so.

After tasting them all plain, I added a little sugar to each (I usually sweeten my tea with honey when I do sweeten it, so I have no idea why I chose sugar for this taste test). The Assam didn’t need sweetening at all (it was just fine plain) so the sugar kind of took away from it. However, the Ceylon and English Breakfast were a little better with a pinch of sugar.

In the end I mixed all three teas together and finished off the cup.

I definitely won’t be buying Ceylon again—I’ll probably mix it together with the English Breakfast just to get through it…or maybe I’ll use it to create a blend of my own—but I will certainly keep Assam on hand going forward.

So there’s a little black tea review for you.


Since I just ordered 8 new packs of tea, I needed a bigger container to store them in. I popped over to Dollar Tree and picked up this little basket which fit perfectly in the corner of the pantry. The tea bags themselves were a little big because the basket narrows at the bottom, but I just folded the sides of the bags and they were able to fit nicely.

One day I will have a full tea corner set up with electric kettle and honey sticks, but until then this will have to do.

I’m still trying to get back into the habit of short story writing, and I’ll let you know how that goes as we move forward.

Until next time…

Happy Tea Drinking!

Winging It

I did not have anything in mind to post today. I’ve been so stressed out lately and trying to manage that stress takes up almost all of my energy.

I did, however, finally start reading Parabale of the Talents (yay me!). I don’t remember this book at all even though I know I read it. I’m going to try to remember to take notes so I can relay my thoughts to you fully when I’m done.

I have plans to expand the content provided here outside of just reading and writing, and I’m trying to decide on the best way to do so. I still want to keep the overall theme of words/literature, but also incorporate more things that make me feel the way reading and writing make me feel (like I’m taking care of myself)…kind of like how I’ve been adding posts about the teas I’m drinking (stuck on Gunpowder Green Tea mixed with ginger root…also drinking it unsweetened).

Honestly, my brain is too stressed right now to have a cohesive plan in place, but I’m going to try some new things to help. Right now, starting with essential oil roll-ons to help with calming and focus. I’ll be ordering those soon, and I will let you know if they help.

Next week we’ve got our final installment of BIG GIRLS. It was a fun little project. Writing mini fiction and decreasing the word count each time while still trying to convey the overall theme was a challenge, but I got it down to as few words as I could while still telling a story.

We’re on a ride…a journey…and I’m not sure where we will ultimately go, but I know that it’ll be worth the trip.

Until next time…

Happy Reading!