Tag Archives: Good to know

It’s friday (again)


We're going to cover four things in this blog. Iced tea pitchers, Paris tea, Chemical Brothers, and a picture of a turtle eating a strawberry.

So it's friday, we've got some new iced tea pitchers from Rishi. They're under 20 dollars, and will drastically improve the quality of your summer.

We also have Harney and Son's Paris tea back in after being sold out of it.

We were playing some music in the store, and it occurred to us that we're probably one of the only "tea rooms" in New York that would play this gem

And, to round it out, here is a picture of a turtle eating a strawberry, as promised.
Have a great weekend everyone.

It’s friday

You need a ridiculous video with a good song to  get you relaxed for the weekend.

We're happy to provide that, thank you for reading our blog.

Movies showing this week at Thirstea

Hey guys, we've cut a huge deal with several Hollywood studios to be featured in digitally re-mastered directors cut DVD's of great American movies. To get you guys hyped up for the release dates, we decided we would show you the covers. Movies will never be the same again. (courtesy of a very photoshop savvy reddit user, and Mike B who made them for us. Thanks!)


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The Art of Making Tea

Step 1: The Plucking

In gardens across the world, pluckers are the beginnings of a great cuppa’ tea. Moving around the garden to harvest different areas every six to 14 days, depending on the season, the plucker’s skilled hands are the key to getting “good leaf.”

That “good leaf” is then carried to the “tea factory” close to the garden, to begin the next process in preparation.

Step 2: Withering

Tea leaves are next laid out on a large bed of forced, blown air.  The air leads to the leaves withering – removing moisture from the leaf so that it reaches a dry, almost leathery texture.

Step 3: Rolling

Tea then goes through the rolling process. It is spread out on rolling tables, or rolling machines, that curl the leaf, tighten it and push out many of its oils. The previous withering step of the process is integral to rolling, because withering allows the leaf to reach a consistency that will keep it from breaking while being rolled.

The leaf is beginning to resemble the tea you are used to seeing in your average tea sachet—but there is still some processing that needs to occur before it’s ready for tasting.

Step 4: Fermentation

Fermentation is one of the most essential steps in tea processing.  Tea is laid out in a large, warm, humid room, and left to “ferment” (which is actually technically oxidation, not fermentation!).  As the tea begins reacting with the warm air, its flavor (and caffeine content) begins to develop.  At this point, experts at the tea factory have to use their senses, actually bringing large handfuls of the tea up to their noses and drawing in a deep breath.  When they decide that the tea’s flavor has reached its peak, they quickly stop the fermenting process before the tea has time to begin declining in flavor.

Tea's flavors, aroma and caffeine contents develops during fermentation.

How does the tea factory stop oxidation from occurring?  By firing the tea.  Tea is quickly heated, which dries the tea and halts its chemical reaction with the warm air.  It also now takes on the form most tea drinkers are used to seeing in a two leaves and a bud tea sachet – a crisp, crackly leaf loaded with flavor.

Step 5: Firing

How does the tea factory stop oxidation from occurring?  By firing the tea.  Tea is quickly heated, which dries the tea and halts its chemical reaction with the warm air.  It also now takes on the form most tea drinkers are used to seeing in a two leaves and a bud tea sachet – a crisp, crackly leaf loaded with flavor.

(courtesy of Two Leaves and a Bud)

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Behind the Label, from seed to table. – Monday, Feb. 7th, 6pm – Armitage Chicago


If you live in the Chicago area and love to learn about how companies' owners build their relationships directly with farmers around the world in order to bring us the finest ingredients in food, here is an event you might be interested in:

On February 7th, Rishi Tea founder Joshua Kaiser will join world-renowned Chef Charlie Trotter and co-owner of Metropolis Coffee Tony Dreyfuss for Behind the Label – from seed to table. Each will share their personal journeys, discuss the concepts of Fair Trade, organic, sustainable, their travels to select the world's finest ingredients and talk about the importance of enduring relationships with farmers and artisans at origin.


Rosemary Tea is also good for hair and scalp…


Last week, we had a customer come in and ask us if there is any tea good for the hair. After some searching, we've found the answer…..it's Rosemary! 🙂

Here are some more useful info on this herb from "The Way of Herbs" by Michael Tierra, L.Ac., O.M.D.:

Rosmarinus officinalis
FAMILY: Labiatae


SYSTEMS AFFECTED: Liver, stomach, spleen-pancreas

PROPERTIES: Antipyretic, antiinflammatory, stomachic, nervine, diaphoretic, astringent, anodyne, antiseptic

DOSE: One teaspoon steeped in a cup of boiling water

USED FOR: Headaches, indigestion, colds, inflammation of the joints, for scalp and hair

NOTES: Rosemary is useful for dyspepsia or digestive upset, headaches, common cold and as a hair strengthener. A simple cup of rosemary tea is as effective as aspirin for headaches and other inflammatory symptoms including the relief of arthritic pains.

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The Art of British Teatime


Have a look at a Magnum Photos gallery on British teatime

Here are some of our favorite.
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New Years Resolution: Switch from Coffee to Tea!


Happy 2011 everyone! What a great year we have ahead of us. We had just added a second wall of shelves filled with more packaged teas for you to browse and choose from. And if you have ever thought about switching from coffee to tea, here are five great reasons to get you started:

1. Tea costs less and thus saves you money.

2. Tea has less caffeine than coffee, and it stimulates you in a more natural way so you don't feel the afternoon crash from when you drink coffee. This can also be beneficial for people who have a hard time sleeping or have anxiety/depression.

3. Green tea provides more catechins than coffee and can lower cholesterol and improve lipid metabolism.

4. Tea has significant anticancer and antibacterial effects.

5. Tea is easier on the organs in your body (stomach, pancreas, liver etc). 

Bonus: We've added an extra one just for fun. Number six is that because of all of the above you can drink more tea than coffee without it having adverse effects.

If you drink coffee now, try substituting tea. If you already drink black tea, try substituting green. Once you've given it a try, please stop by and tell us how great you feel, we'd love to hear your story! 🙂

Cheers to all,
Thirstea Team
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What is Camellia Sinensis?


What is Camellia sinensis?

Among so many other elements, tea dazzles us with its diversity. One plant, many dimensions.

While the teas of the world reveal endless complexities and variations, all tea springs from just one plant species: Camellia sinensis. The four varieties of tea include:


Black Tea

Black tea is produced when withered tea leaves are rolled and oxidized causing the leaves to turn dark. Once the desired color and pungency is reached the tea is dried. A robust cup with astringent notes is produced.

Oolong Tea

Oolong gains its alluring character by withering and briefly oxidizing the tea leaves in direct sunlight. The leaves are rolled, then fired to halt oxidation when it is about halfway between black and green tea.

Green Tea

Green tea is produced when tea leaves are exposed to heat stopping the oxidation process. This allows the leaf to retain its emerald hue. Next, the leaves are rolled or twisted and fired. A bright cup is produced with fresh, grassy notes.

100% White Tea

100% White tea is the most minimally processed of all tea varietals. The fragile tea buds are neither rolled or oxidized and must be carefully monitored as they are withered and dried. This precise and subtle technique produces a subtle cup with mellow, sweet notes.

(Courtesy of The Republic of Tea)

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Our friend Candace Célèbre is in a group show at Charmingwall Gallery opening tomorrow Nov. 5th!


The 6X6 Project is an exhibition of original art all done on 6" square canvases by artists here in the city and around the country.

Our friend Candace Célèbre is also going to be in the show! Her piece will feature a set of different aged faces sticking their tongue out at the viewer. Literally! (Attached is her work still in progress) Isn't it amazing? I can't wait to see the finished work!

This last 6X6 show opens tomorrow Nov. 5th (from 6-8p) at the all so delightful Charmingwall Gallery at 191 West 4th Street. There will be over one hundred pieces exhibited. All original art. All six inch square. So what are you waiting for? We'll see you at the show. 🙂