Wednesday, July 6, 2011

East Teas

Last time I talked to you about the Gawain travel sets, this time I’ll mention briefly East Teas in London. Even though I said I was not going to talk about London in any big way, I’ll mention this shop because Alex Fraser, the owner, sells loads of travel gear.
East Teas can be found either online (check my link page) or on Fridays and Saturdays at Borough Market at London Bridge. There are two other tea stalls there as well, one selling Darjeeling one selling Ceylon. On his stall owner Alex Fraser sells high quality Green and Oolong tea and some black as well as tea ware galore. Alex Fraser works as an art lecturer at the University of the Arts and was in Japan studying tea for 3 years.
If you come to his stall he will give you expert advise and brew up a cuppa of your tea of choice.
Below are images of two bits of teaware I bought at East Teas

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Tea Travel Set

I know you are all dying to hear about tea in Paris, but you have to be patient for a while longer! Sorry! There are several utensils that I want to talk about, utensils to take with you when travelling. The first of these is a tea travel set. Ever been on holiday and craved for a really good cup of tea, starred at the two stale teabags in the hotel room and not known what to do. There are of course multiple ways round them and believe me I’ve tried them all. Take your teapot – too large, put leaves directly in the cup – tea will be too bitter, take an infuser basket – doesn’t fit the cup.
Here is the solution. When travelling I take with me a tea travel set consisting of a Gawain and a cup.

You can also buy these with multiple cups if there are more of you. Not everyone is a sado like me that likes their won company! Brewing in a tea travel set works in the following way: You put the tea in the Gawain and fill it with water and brew for the desired time. I use a large amount of tea and brew it for several short infusions.

This particular set comes from East Teas. (See link section for their web page) I also own another of these sets, also from East Teas, slightly smaller but more ornamental. Both these tea sets are individually made by small artisan producers.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Jane Pettigrew - Lady of Tea

During the first year of running her teashop she was asked to write a book of tea-time recipes which was the start of a long career as writer and lecturer on tea events. She also advices hotels and other food establishments on tea.
'TEA CLASSIFIED' (in the US published as 'The New Tea Lover's Companion')
Design For Tea (Publisher: Sutton)
The Tea Lover’s Companion (Publisher: National Trust and Benjamin Press)
Afternoon Tea (Publisher: Jarrold Publishing)
Traditional Teatime Recipes (Publisher: Anova Books)
The Picnic (Publisher: Jarrold Publishing)
The English Pudding (Publisher: Jarrold Publishing)
A Social History of Tea (Publisher: The National Trust 2001)
Jane Pettigrew's Tea Time (Publisher: Dorling Kindersley 1986)
Time For Tea - A Book of Days (Publisher: Littlebrown 1991)
Tea and Infusions (Publisher: Carlton Books 1999)
Tea (Publisher: Grange Books 1999)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tea in the City

Last time I gave you fellow tea friend an outline of what my blog was meant to be. Today I am going to talk about a book on Tea in Paris. The book is part of a series called Tea in The City. These books are written by Jane Pettigrew, Bruce Richardson and Elizabeth Knight (more on them later) and cover the three cities, New York, London and Paris. I have read both the London and Paris one, but do not own the New York one. If anyone of you fellow tea friends can comment on the New York book, I’d be more than delighted.
All three books are published by Benjamin Press. Below are the details:
By Jane Pettigrew and Bruce Richardson (ISBN 978-0-9793431-0-0)
114 pages, 150 colour photographs

By Jane Pettigrew and Bruce Richardson (ISBN 0966347889)
114 pages, 150 colour photographs

By Elizabeth Knight, photography by Bruce Richardson (ISBN 0966347870)
114 pages, 130 colour photographs

After having read the London and the Paris book I have to say that the Paris book is far superior to the London one. I think this comes mainly from the fact that London doesn’t have as much to offer when it comes to tea.
Paris is the European Capital of Tea, there are tea shops, tea rooms and tea things all over the city. You can’t walk for more than 10 minutes without stumbling onto something tea related. I think the guide book reflects this well. After an introduction by the authors on Paris and tea in Paris the book is divided into chapters each covering an area of Paris. There is a map at the start of the chapter to orientate the reader. Each chapter is then sub-divided into teashops and tearooms. Establishments are briefly described and some of their available teas listed. Further we find the address, email, web page as well as the nearest Metro station for each establishment. Shops or cafes of particular note are given a page long entry. There are vivid pictures throughout the book as well as glossaries and an index.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Dear Tea friend!

Welcome to my new blog. I have two obsessions: Tea and Travelling! Well actually its 4, taking photos and writing about my tea travels! And it is precisely this that I want to do here. This blog is dedicated to tea travels. Every time I go travelling I will post things here. Reviews of teashops, teas consumed, cups and pots bought, books about tea, exhibitions etc, etc. I live in London and will not review anything London related. I will only review places outside London. They could be from a long travel to a far off land or short trip to nearby Brighton. It could be about a specific tea related trips to say Darjeeling or about a walking holiday in Wales. But I don’t want this tea blog to be just about my ramblings. I want you fellow tea friend to interact with me! Make comments on what I write, suggest links etc.
I will post about my trip to Paris soon! In the meantime, happy sipping!