Teascopia in Revista Estampas

Final (1 of 1)

Two days ago I had the honour to be featured in Revista Estampas, the Sunday magazine from El Universal, a national newspaper in Venezuela. As a Venezuelan I grew up reading this magazine every week: articles about food, fashion, new restaurants in the city, health tips and recipes, so I feel very fortunate to find a bit of myself there now.

In the article “Té en Armonía”, I speak with the author Adriana Gibbs about pairing food with tea while she also gives some insights about the types of tea and where to buy tea in Caracas.

This is the second time I am invited to participate in a publication of Estampas and I am very grateful and beyond excited for the opportunity!

You can read the full article here

Thank you!

TanLong Tea

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The global tea community is huge and diverse but more than anything, it is very friendly and supportive. Everybody seems to be moved and inspired by tea in any form and it feels like a stockmarket where everyone is constantly exchanging information, ideas, products, samples, reposting pictures, blog posts, promotions and it is truly amazing and fun!

In this context I met Vicky. Her father Mr.Hu and her grandmother are the owners of TanLong Tea, a family tea business headquartered in China that she supports and manages from Toronto, Canada where she currently lives. After seeing a picture of a Golden Monkey tea on my instagram, we got in touch through email and agreed for her to send me some tea samples to review on my blog. Since then we are somehow always in touch.

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In her message she told me a bit of the story behind TanLong Tea and also commented that: “all of the PuEr teas and YunNan fine black teas we carry are selected and produced by my father, who is a Ministry of Labor certified Tea Master in China. He stays in Yunnan and Canton province to source tea and supply teas to stores over China”. She also added that they work along with the tea farmers and their communities to improve the lives in the remote mountains and to promote their teas worldwide.

Few weeks ago Vicky shared the good news that the Company has received their testing report on pesticides from an Agriculture and Food Laboratory in Canada for the Hu’s Ancient Tea Tree Puerh and they found no pesticides and fertilizers chemicals in the tea so, congratulations on that achievement as well.

I had great expectations about this tasting as it is not that usual to have the chance to get in touch directly with the tea producers, without intermediaries, so I was looking forward to trying all the teas. It truly  fascinates me and makes me think about the remote areas where these ancient tea trees grow, all the production process it requires and the incredible craftsmanship there is behind each cup of tea.

Let’s taste in a thoughtful way…!

TanLong Tea Teascopia

Thank you TanLong Tea and specially Vicky for getting in touch and sharing your tea with me. I am always in the hunt for new teas, providers and farmers and TanLong teas has been a great discovery.

I wholeheartedly wish you all the best!

http://www.tanlongtea.com

 

Tea and Cake with Lorena Franzoni


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In this edition of tea and cake I have a very special guest, Lorena Franzoni, an Argentine graphic designer and artist that lives in Barcelona and with whom I always like to share ideas and projects and, of course, many cups of tea. This time I invited her to bring her ceramic pieces to have “tea and cake” at home using them as the main theme. I chose a refreshing Darjeeling First Flush and, to accompany it, whole wheat and regular madeleines, mini croissants, mini “napolitanas” and strawberries.

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Her pieces are handmade and they respond to her own creative process, stories and needs. I particularly like the organic touch and feel of the pieces and how its variety of sizes, textures, shapes and colours complement each other so gracefully.

In the pictures you can see small bowls, a beautiful cake stand and two little horses. The horses are actually part of a bigger piece called “Brillante”, a lamp that is also a character that during the day delivers flowers and by night lightens up the dark. The piece was recently showcased at the collective expo called “Los Tripulantes” in Barcelona.

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We had tea and a nice chat about her present and future projects. She is currently working on a children’s cup for her nephew and a set of plates for her home. I am sure it will be to die for!

What a pleasure to have tea with such a great company and these beautiful pieces! Thank you Lore for being on this edition of Tea and Cake, a real delight!

To know more about Lorena’s design work please visit:

http://www.lorenafranzoni.com

She makes all her ceramic pieces at El Taller de Lusesita: https://www.facebook.com/pages/El-taller-de-lusesita/571797292930333?fref=photo

Minimaps: All about tea

Minimaps Tea in Barcelona

Visit http://superminimaps.com/barcelona-all-about-tea/ to download the map! Illustration by Valentina Alvarado

“Minimaps are small travel guides to share a little bit of your world and enjoy someone else’s. The project is collectively created by travelers, walkers, nomads, hedonists, nihilists, epicures, readers, photographers and illustrators from all around the planet, who want to share with others what they love and know best: their favorite bookshops in Buenos Aires, the things that surprised them when they got lost in Lisbon, the best places to eat ramen in Portland, the best spots for selfies in the selfie capital of the world, etc.”

I have had the pleasure to be the editor of the Minimap dedicated to “Tea in Barcelona” in collaboration with the wonderful illustrator Valentina Alvarado, and now I am very happy to be able to share it with you. I enjoyed every minute of the making process as I not only had the chance to write about tea and drink many cups along the way, but also to meet fascinating people and new tea spots that I didn’t know before.

I hope this map can serve as a guide for people and tea lovers coming to Barcelona and that it allows them to connect and share their love for this wonderful beverage.

My invitation is to visit Minimaps to download the full map and also to have a look around as it is full of good stories, interesting places and fun things to do in various cities. The best part is that all the maps are free to download so you can also start a collection!

Special thanks to Ana, Editor in Chief and creator of this amazing project for inviting me to participate!

If you have any comments or suggestions, tea places that are worth visiting or questions, please do get in touch! I would love to hear from you!

Happy tea everyone! Enjoy!

Paper and Tea

Paper and Tea Teascopia

Last February I went to Berlin for few days to meet with some friends during the Berlinale Film Festival. As my friends already knew the city I didn’t make any plans but there was just one thing I was really looking forward on doing: visiting Paper and Tea, a tea shop that I love.

Since we “knew” each other through social media, a week before my trip I sent them a email saying that I was going to Berlin and I wanted to say hi, but unfortunately I didn’t get any reply. Nevertheless I told my friend Marlies, who also loves tea, that we should go anyway and check out the store as we’ll be able to get some nice teas to bring back home and also just to have a look around.

We went to the Concept Store, a gorgeous shop located in the neighbourhood of Charlottenburg where we wandered around sniffing all the teas on display, admiring the collection of teaware while we sipped a black Keemun they had kindly offered us.

IMG_2296We had finally made up our minds choosing some teas and they told us that we could have a small tasting. I wanted to try the Maia’s Pick and we had the opportunity to try the Sakura Garden as well. We had a lovely tasting and made the final decision on the teas we wanted.

At the till I mentioned to the guy from the shop that I had a tea blog and that a week before I wrote to them saying that I was coming and that I wanted to say hi and finally meet them in person. He was very surprised and sorry that I didn’t get any reply from them as they are always happy to welcome bloggers and offer proper tasting, a nice tour through the store and many things more. But the truth of the matter is that he had done so already. He gave us a great tasting and he was very nice! His name is René and we stayed even longer chatting away. He also gave me more tea samples to taste (coming below) and a couple of the signature tote bags with the P&T message: “You drink coffee I drink tea my dear” for me and my friend. He was very kind, welcoming and interesting to talk to and we even exchanged emails and cards. So I am glad I introduced myself after all!

Here are the samples I got: a White Pu Er Bai Ya from Yunnan China, a green Jade Bud (organic bio) from Hubei China and a Sencha, Sakura Garden from Mie Japan.

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I also got for myself a delicious Osmanthus Oolong “Change-e Forever” that I love to have in the morning when I want to daydream: roasted and flowery at the same time, well balanced and perfect. And the “Maia’s Pick” that combines the grassy taste and colour of a sencha with the sweetness of a Chinese green. Absolutely delicious!

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This store really exceeded my expectations in every sense. Not only do they have a gorgeous, minimalistic space to celebrate tea but also high quality tea from almost every corner of the world, plus they know how to make people fall in love with their selection.

Thank you Paper and Tea and René for having us!

http://www.paperandtea.com

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Tea Tasting 14.04.15 Barcelona

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I am very excited to announce that I will be doing a Tea Tasting event in Barcelona at the Cuchara Club on Tuesday the 14th of April at 7:00pm. Join me to discover the fascinating world of tea in an intimate and friendly environment where we will appreciate the simplicity and the complexity of this ancient beverage. The tasting will be in Spanish but please do not hesitate to contact me at teascopia@yahoo.es if you have any questions.

Degustación y apreciación del té: una experiencia sensorial

Descubre el fascinante mundo del té en un ambiente intimo y cordial donde apreciaras la sencillez y la complejidad de esta bebida milenaria.

El cupo es limitado. Para reservar por favor envía un correo electrónico a: cucharaclub@cucharaclub.com / Space is limited! To reserve a spot please contact: cucharaclub@cucharaclub.com 

http://cucharaclub.es

¡Espero verlos allí! I hope to see you there!

Notes on tea – Teatulia

In this opportunity we head off to Northern Bangladesh, to the region of Teatulia.

Teatulia is a company that specialises in organic tea from their own single USDA-certified organic garden in northern Bangladesh, offering a range of teas as well as herbal infusions.

I have had the pleasure to taste and review three of their award-winning organic teas from the North American Tea Championship: a white, an oolong and a black tea and now to share my notes with you.

Teatulia Organics - Teascopia

Few months ago I was talking to a Wine Sommelier, as I was looking to buy an organic and natural wine, and she made me taste one of her favourites that she described as “wild”. She used the term to say it was “as nature intended” and I loved it as it perfectly described the taste and the feeling of that particular wine. The experience still lingers on my mind and I think the term can be applied to these teas as well. For me their best quality is precisely that they are natural but sophisticated at the same time, raw and refined; a fantastic result of the way they have been grown and produced.

I also appreciate the fact that this brand has a strong social commitment with the local community who works at the garden and the environment. In a world where profit and mass production is the norm, it is refreshing to come across with companies with a sensitive and sustainable approach to business.

Thank you Teatulia for this experience!

http://www.teatulia.com