Well, it’s finally winter. Snow is on the ground, icy air is obnoxiously slapping us in the face, the humidifier has been employed in the bedroom, and fashion is reduced to “but is it warm??” Also, it’s dark out at 4:30. It’s basically midnight before Wheel of Fortune is on. So, to save our sanity, we are reaching for warm, cozy beverages… like tea! It’s a hug in a cup! What’s in our tea cupboards??
I would have to say that my favorite tea is earl grey. I sometimes feel like there isn’t a brand that I haven’t tried their earl grey (of course this is not true, but you see where I’m going…. I’ve tried a lot.) One of my favorite places to pick up tea is TJ Maxx, which is where I have picked up and am often able repurchase Clipper organic earl grey. I feel like it has the perfect amount of bergamot, is really smooth, and with a splash of milk, pretty much perfection.
Say Celestial Seasonings and sleepy time and lemon zinger tea is what I think of – I’ve honestly never been a fan. Which is why I was surprised to find they have a slightly more posh range within their line now. I stumbled upon the Dirty Chai at Target, and decided to impulse purchase it. It’s a masala chai tea with espresso. Do you remember General Foods International coffees? With a little milk and honey, this tastes just like that. It satisfies my caffeine needs when I can’t choose if I’d rather have tea or have coffee and is pretty good, actually!
With a name like Teapigs, even without trying any of their teas, how can you not already love them? Having tried several of their teas through the pick and mix sample box, there’s not one I don’t like. The herbal teas they offer are particularly great. I love the Super Fruit at night, when I don’t want any caffeine, but I want something sweet. It’s delicious on it’s own and even better with milk.
Real talk: I’m a coffee girl, first and foremost. But in the past 5-10 years, I can only deal with coffee in the morning. Granted, it is ESSENTIAL in the morning, but come 10:30 or 11:00am, and I enjoy it less and less. If I have coffee after noon, forget it- I just want to chew my face off, and then I won’t fall asleep until 2am. BEING OLD IS THE WORST.
Before I got old and lazy, I used to be a super tea person. Like, I would buy bulk, whole leaf loose tea, I had a dedicated tea infuser, knew all the temperatures and steeping times for my teas… it was pretty great really. I loved a company called SpecialTeas, which is now Teavana (uuugh. read: Starbucks). Green tea was my jam (straight up Dragonwell is delightful!), and Pamela got me hooked on the Earl Grey Creme, which is a softer, less astringent version of an Earl Grey. These are, in fact, special teas, so I don’t reach for them as often as I would like to, but they are around if I have some time and want a treat (and need a little non-coffee boost in the afternoon).
While technically not actually tea, per se, I always keep some kind (any kind!) of peppermint tea on hand. It’s not caffeinated, so it’s a great after-dinner digestive. Also, it saved my (future) marriage when I had my wisdom teeth removed, and was forbidden from brushing my teeth for several days (DAYS!!!). Also also, it’s great to have on had if you have a crum tum.
Have you ever had a hot toddy? Like, for realsies? It’s honey, lemon, and ginger diluted in hot water. It’s like a hug that punches you in the face, but it’s perfect if you’re feeling a bit under the weather, which is likely this time of year. Our local co-op makes an AMAZING hot toddy (non-alcoholic) in their coffee/juice bar- here is the recipe– it’s probably amazing (and even more medicinal) with a little sploosh of rum or whiskey. 😉
I do not drink coffee. It’s a constant battle because I drive long, long distances late at night and sometimes drinking coffee would be a good idea–but I get crabby about the caffeine and the taste–so I don’t. But tea? I’m crazy for tea. Pamela and I bonded over our tea obsession when we were first introduced by Jess. In fact–buried in my tea collection is the Teapigs sample box Pamela mentioned above–which is a super fun way to try a bunch of new varieties.
Most of the teas from my desk drawer. Yeah–it’s a problem.
I drink tea all day long. As much of it as I drink, unlike Jess, I don’t know any of the metrics of making tea. Nor do I have a tea making process. I just fill my mug with hot water from the dispenser and put a tea bag in. And then I refill it throughout the day until I’m basically drinking hot water. At some point, I’ll start over with a new tea bag and begin the process again. Very fancy.
My “Baby I’m a Star” original mug–painted by yours truly in the Dells a million years ago–with my signature lipstick stain.
But I start every day at the office the same way–with my favorite tea of all time–Harney and Sons Hot Cinnamon Spice Tea. I am straight up addicted. In fact–half of my office is now, too–even my tea averse business partner is converted. This tea is exactly as the name says–it’s very cinnamony–and makes you feel all warm–with spicy kick. I’ve tried a ton of other teas to try and find an appropriate dup, and I can’t. I’m not sure what makes it so special. But it is. Nothing I have tried even comes close. It is a black tea–so it does have some caffeine–but the decaffeinated version is still really good. I have both and will sometimes just switch to the decaf in the afternoon. It is pricey for a tea–but soooo worth it. (Honorable mention in the Harney and Sons line is their Paris tea.)
Almost every aspect of my life uses my voice: talking at work (and life), teaching dance, singing in choir (or in the car or at a concert). So my voice takes a beating. I don’t know what I would do without the classic Traditional Medicinal Throat Coat Tea. I love black licorice so I have no issues with the flavor of the tea and it works wonders on giving your voice life again. If you like licorice, the Yogi Eqyptian Licorice is wonderful, but not as medicinal.
At night, my favorite tea to unwind with is the get some zzz’s from The Republic of Tea. I have a lot of their teas and really love the canister presentation. I have a bunch of them just because I’m a sucker for the packaging and love trying them. But I find this nighttime tea perfect to relieve stress and get ready for bed.
Are you more tea or coffee? Do you have any favorites that we need to put in our cupboard or desk drawer? Please comment below! And hey–stay warm out there, folks!
Like all things, we have purchased these teas with our own money and are not being paid for our drinking habits.