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Après-tea: The Best Teas to Enjoy on Your Next Ski Trip

By Jasmine Dilmanian (In-House Writer) 7 months ago 4328 Views No comments

It's mountain season! You might be going to actually ski, but it's more likely that you're going for some snow tubing, snowshoeing, jacuzzi time, or R&R in the lodge. From the snow-capped Swiss Alps and Aspen to the humble hills of the Berkshires and Catskills, the satisfaction of a nice cup of h̶o̶t̶ ̶c̶o̶c̶o̶a̶ soothing tea after a long winter day is the ultimate satisfaction.

One great part about tea is that it's easily transportable. All you really need is some hot water and you can make your favorite cup just about anywhere. The types of tea you want to enjoy at the chalet are deep, hearty, warming, and comforting. They do not skimp on flavor or intensity and they radiate the joyous spirit we still like to have coming off the holidays.

If you're heading to luxurious Banff this ski season, the Fairmont Banff Springs and Chateau even offers a luxurious afternoon tea that will give you a taste of the most exquisite post-slope blends (plus pastries, of course!), including green infusions, yerba mate, Egyptian chamomile, Maple Maple, and other signature blends of the resort. We've got to check this experience off our list.


In the meantime, you can create your own cold-weather tea experience no matter where you're headed (or, hint: even at home). We've compiled a few recommendations from the Heavenly Tea Leaves team to complete your next wintertime getaway.

If you want a sampler pack so you can try out a few different types of tea, try our Flavored Black Tea Sampler. This luxurious tea set contains four beautifully packaged loose leaf black teas that are invigorating, giving you the naturally-caffeinated boost you need to get through a physically intense ski trip. It will also help restore your energy after a long day of ups-and-downs, or become the perfect fire pit companion. Our personal favorite of the bunch? Ginger Black. (The ginger will help protect and relieve you from swollen feet, or the sniffles.)

If a spice-infused floral tea is more your thing, Turmeric Bliss is our preferred pick. This unique turmeric-heavy blend gives the punch of spices like cardamom with the calming floral notes of lavender, rose petals, and hibiscus. This blend will clear your head and warm your body in an instant – the perfect cold weather elixir. If you're brewing it yourself, make sure to use water that's come to a boil and steep for about five minutes.

Next on the list, the exotic theme continues with White Chai. This is a white tea blend – a great, relaxing option for those looking for depth of flavor with a lower caffeine level than that of black tea. This tea is made from Organic white tea, lemongrass, cinnamon, ginger, pineapple, pink peppercorns, coconut, clove, cardamom, and natural cinnamon flavor – a combination with a knockout flavor and aroma. You'll be warm and ready to go back up on the mountain after drinking some of this one on your break.

Another (very aptly titled) caffeine-free option is Heavenly Tea Leaves' Warmth. What makes it so warm, aside from the fact that it's best consumed hot? Organic turmeric, orange peel, vanilla, and other naturally cozy ingredients.

So, are you feeling toasty yet? These tea suggestions, in lieu of a fancy afternoon tea at a chateau, are perfectly paired with breakfast, lunch, a mid-afternoon snack, dessert after dinner, and even a before-bed treat (in the case of the herbal ones). What's special about a winter getaway is that unique juxtaposition of wood and snow, pine and frost, warm and cold, crisp and spicy, fresh and earthy. By bringing along your favorite selection of tea for the ride, you'll create just the right balance. Cheers to your next Après-tea!

Teas of Autumn: Venturing Beyond Pumpkin Spice

By Jasmine Dilmanian (In-House Writer) 3 years ago 8268 Views No comments

The fall season instantaneously reminds us of brisk air, rustling leaves, and pumpkin pie. And tea? Yes, please.

With temperatures falling and blankets coming out from storage, brewing a hot cup of tea often becomes a quotidian habit around this time of year. With Halloween and Thanksgiving around the corner, we are perhaps too often reminded of pumpkin and apple as the flavors of fall. These pies, cakes, cookies, and other confections adorn dessert tables, but don't these cliché tastes leave something to be desired when it comes to the most soothing beverage of the season?

Going beyond the ordinary, there are a number of methods, add-ins, and new formulas that will give plain-Jane Assam or Chamomile a run for its money. The new teas of autumn can also serve to complement the more classic flavors of fall, since we're not quite ready to give those up, either!


Try out our personal fall favorite first: the masala chai latte.

This is the sophisticated tea and coffee drinker's answer to a traditional pumpkin spice latte, which has dominated the commercial beverage scene over the past decade. While the American appellation for this Indian beverage isn't quite accurate, there's no denying its rich flavor and aromatic powers.

  1. Boil a 3:1 mixture of milk to water (Make sure to use whole milk for the best results!).
  2. Pour masala chai into the mixture and heat on a medium simmer for about 10 minutes.
  3. Add sugar to taste, along with a sprinkling of nutmeg and cinnamon. For the sugar, begin by adding 1.5 teaspoons for each cup of liquid in your mixture.
  4. Using a ladle and tea strainer, pour out the masala chai latte into individual cups, straining out the tea leaves; serve hot.

The result is a drink that emanates warmth – a rich and glorious dessert and beverage in one. The aroma awakens the senses with hints of cloves and cardamom.


For less of a sensory explosion, you could take the subtler route this season with classic vanilla.

Vanilla tisanes go hand-in-hand with warmth, and with the typical flavors and essences of the holiday season. The best way to get your fix? A tea sampler, of course!

Heavenly Tea Leaves' whole-leaf vanilla tea sampler is hand-blended and selected to please your taste buds on the briskest of days. This well-rounded pack includes Vanilla Black, Vanilla Rooibos Soufflé, Vanilla Green, Vanilla Rose Oolong for a variety of autumnal aromas. Because why should we choose just one? Bonus: it's certified kosher* and it makes a great holiday gift! Plus, herbal vanilla tea can be blended into black tea for a caffeinated kick, or drunk alone as a relaxing pre-bedtime ritual.


As it turns out, fall tea drinks aren't always about the heat. How about a tea cocktail? Some earl grey gin, perhaps?

World of Tea introduces us to this concoction, served at some of New York's trendiest bars like the Pegu Club. While mixed drinks like these are served at room temperature or chilled, they definitely warm us up on the inside. Plus, the earthy earl grey flavor is definitely a nod to the tones of the season.

Tony Gebely writes: "The Procedure: Steep 4 Tbsp of loose earl grey tea into a 750ml bottle of gin for two hours. Strain."

"Tea is astringent," he continues, "and in that sense can work almost like bitters, but you'll have far better luck with tea in the base spirit of a sour, with plenty of acid and sugar to round out and cut the tannic edge of the tea . . . Remember, proof in the spirit works like water temperature. You'll get more intense flavor steeping into a base spirit than you will a lower-proof wine, vermouth, or liqueur."

In other words, stronger alcohol is equivalent to hotter water, and black tea in cocktails goes well with sweet and sour flavors. Here's to an interesting brew.


Ginger is another invigorating fall flavor of tea that will never be dull on the palate. The properties of ginger are complex: it is at once pungent, spicy, and earthy. The root has also been known to help alleviate nausea, inflammation, soreness, and other ailments.

The best way to round out ginger's punch is to combine it with a splash of versatile citrus. Lemon – a flavor adaptable year-round – does this job perfectly. Heavenly Tea Leaves' blend, Ginger Lemon Green, which comes in a pretty silken pyramid sachet, satisfies all of our ginger desires in a healthy and balanced way. Not to mention, this one's organic.


And for some last-minute fun…

Take a look at this video in which Malaysian artist Red Hong Yi puts together a portrait called Teh Tarik Man out of 20,000 tea bags. The tea bags are individually steeped at various temperatures to create different shades of brown, resulting in an awesome final depiction.

7 Creative Uses for Tea Besides Drinking It!

By Jasmine Dilmanian (In-House Writer) 3 years ago 22641 Views 4 comments

With autumn upon us, shifting back to hot tea from iced is a no-brainer. But how can we explore the lesser-known uses for our favorite leaves and herbal blends? Brewing tea hot or cold and adding new flavors is about as far is we can go with traditional tea making. However, real tea transformations occur with a little extra creativity. If you don't feel like just drinking tea, you can also eat it in foods and baked goods, turn it into a makeshift natural air freshener, add it to compost to bring your garden alive, have it heal minor wounds and reduce inflammation, and even use it to scent personal products. The possibilities are endless, and they all start with that leftover tea bag in the corner of your cabinet. Here are 7 ways you can get the tea party started:

1. Perfume Your Room

Who knew tea could replace that stale potpourri in your foyer or bathroom? Apartment Therapy has discovered that hanging tea bags can give your space a subtle, earthy smell. Plus, it's soothing, compact, and most of all, economical! Lifehacker notes that you can add a sweet-smelling natural oil in order to enhance the perfume:

"Tea is cheap, the scent of most tea is mild and pleasant, and you can easily refresh your little tea-bag sachet by tossing it and putting a new one in or with a drop or two of essential oil."

All you have to do is hang tea sachets or pour your favorite loose tea leaves into a pretty bowl for a feel-good, mini-home makeover!

2. Cool Down a Sunburn (or Another Burn)

To relieve the sting from a day of tanning, a rushed shave, or even a misplaced flat iron, tea might just do the trick! All you have to do is take a used, cool tea-bag and place it on the affected area for instant relief. "This works well for other types of minor burns (i.e., from a teapot or steam iron) too," writes Trish Barber of Reader's Digest. "If the sunburn is too widespread to treat this way, put some tea bags in your bathwater and soak your whole body in the tub." Razor burn, be gone. Bonus: it'll help make poison ivy rashes feel better, too!

3. Make a Gourmet Dinner

While coffee is often used in sophisticated meat marinades, tea marinades are lesser-known but equally delicious. What's great about this concoction from the Today Show is its flexibility; just about any green or black tea will do. Here, the grassy notes of raw tea combine with fresh herbs to complement the acidity and kick of Dijon mustard.

Ingredients for marinade:

  • 1 1/2 cups cooled black or green tea (Try our Assam or
  • 2 teaspoons stone ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh marjoram, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

"Whisk the tea, both mustards, marjoram, and oregano together in a bowl or large measuring cup. Whisk in the olive oil until the marinade has the consistency of a very loose vinaigrette.

Pour over red meat or poultry in a large, wide dish or zip-top bag and marinate in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Remove the meat from the marinade and lightly pat dry with paper towels. Discard the marinade.

Grill the meat to your preference."

The organic Chun Mee Green Superior Tea from Heavenly Tea Leaves is a high-quality, neutral green tea perfect for topping beef.

4. Concoct a Divine Dessert

The earthy bergamot flavor that dominates Earl Grey teas (try Heavenly's version) is the perfect balance to the sweetness we crave in a dessert. This recipe for Earl Grey shortbread cookies from Food Network's Claire Robinson uses loose-leaf tea with only five additional ingredients, resulting in a simply satisfying confection.

"In a food processor, pulse together the flour, tea, and salt, until the tea is just spotted throughout the flour. Add the confectioners' sugar, vanilla, and butter. Pulse together just until a dough is formed. Place dough on a sheet of plastic wrap, and roll into a log, about 2 1/2-inches in diameter. Tightly twist each end of wrap, and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Slice the log into 1/3-inch thick disks. Place on parchment or silpat lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart (2 probably needed depending on size of sheets). Bake until the edges are just brown, about 12 minutes. Let cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks and cool to room temperature."

5. De-puff Your Eyes and De-stink Your Feet!

Give your sweaty, smelly feet a 20-minute soak in a sweet-smelling tea bath and they'll be as good as new, according to Reader's Digest. And of course, swollen eye relief is one of the most common uses for that leftover tea bag: "Revitalize tired, achy, or puffy eyes. Soak two tea bags in warm water and place them over your closed eyes for 20 minutes. The tannins in the tea act to reduce puffiness and soothe tired eyes."

6. Tea for Bath & Body

While you may not always have time to make your own personal care products, this soap from DIYer Bonnie Eng is the perfect way to get rid of those last spoons of herbal tea you have left in the cupboard.

Ingredients for tea soap bar:

  • melt & pour soap base
  • essential oils or tea powders
  • leaf teas or herbals
  • soap or silicone molds
  • microwave safe medium or large mixing bowl
  • spoons for stirring
  • dough cutter or knife
  • tea towel
  • parchment paper and twine

For step-by-step instructions, visit Thirsty for Tea.

To perfume your soap to perfection, try fruity or floral flavors from Heavenly Tea Leaves like Mango Passion Fruit Rooibos or Hibiscus.

7. In the Garden

Want to nourish your lush outdoor garden or tiny house plant? The blog Gardening Know How says you're in luck; you may have more fertilizer on-hand than you thought. If your tea bag is biodegradable (like Heavenly Tea Leaves' pyramid sachets!), you can throw a used one directly into your compost to feed your plant and help stave off killer weeds. If not, throw loose tea into the compost instead. The use of tea in this case may help reduce your use of harsher, less environmentally-friendly fertilizers and other plant foods.

And Finally, a Fun Fact!

According to LiveStrong, consuming whole tea leaves (considered here in tablet form) have in some cases been shown to contribute to weight loss and energy increases. But remember, don't eat the soap!