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#NEWYEARNEWTEA – January Blog and Purple Tea!

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A fresh start!

2016 was an unforgettable and busy year for us here at The London Tea Company. We launched our new website, brought out a new limited-edition product and attended more events such as Taste of London, and London Coffee Festival to name a few!

Now, with the arrival of a new year most of us start thinking about resolutions which, more often than not, include things such as getting healthier or getting a promotion at work!

Despite all the good intentions, many of us tend to fall off the wagon only a month or two in and by the time we hit Valentine’s Day we’ve traded in smoothies and fruit for hot chocolate and biscuits. So what’s the solution?

Here at London Tea we have a great idea for a simple, sustainable New Year’s Resolution. Drink more tea!

So, where do you start?

Start with our NEW Purple Tea. It’s refreshingly tart with plenty of flavour and colour, and is delicious hot or as an iced tea. It’s a blend of purple tea straight from our estate in Kericho, hibiscus and natural flavours creating a blend that smells and tastes just as delicious as it looks.

What is Purple Tea?

Purple tea is a hybrid of Camellia Sinensis (what your breakfast tea is made from) and naturally grows purple at the top! Purple Tea is rich in Anthocyanin’s, which are found naturally in blackcurrants, red apples and grapes. They are responsible for the rich, dark and powerful purple colour of our tea.

Why is Purple Tea so good?

Anti-Oxidant*Purple Tea is rich in polyphenols which are purported to be excellent anti-oxidants

Anti-Obesity* – some research has shown that Purple Tea extract reduces lipid absorption in the intestines. It is also claimed to improve metabolism

Anti-Ageing of skin*the polyphenols in Purple Tea Extract are thought to reduce skin ageing, cell damage and inflammation resulting in a better, younger looking complexion

* based on Japanese research, not yet proven in the EU or USA

 

How do you Brew?

It is best to brew our Purple Tea for about 3 minutes and because of the delicious flavour, there’s no need to add anything. Just enjoy that delicious taste!
 

Treat yourself!
To celebrate this wonderful limited edition blend and help you with your New Year resolutions, we’re offering you lovely people a 20% discount on your first order from our website. Just enter the code newyearnewtea when prompted for 20% off!

To see what we get up to London, follow us:

Instagram        @thelondonteacompany

Twitter                        @lovelondontea

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10 Things You Need To Know About Black Tea #3

Black Tea Blog 2

Tea School # 3

What is Black Tea exactly? We’re not referring to a cuppa without milk, we’re getting technical here. Read up on our ten bite sized chunks of tea facts and you’ll be amazed at how little you knew before.

  1. When it comes to black tea, there are two main methods of processing; orthodox and CTC
  2. Black tea is called black tea because of oxidisation during processing
  3. Oxidisation turns the leaf black
  4. It is from the leaf camellia sinensis (the same as Green or White tea) and has been oxidised which is the reason for its brown tannic quality
  5. Oxidisation is where the leaf is cut and the inside is exposed to oxygen
  6. CTC – Means Crush (or cut), Tear and Curl which is the process that teas go through to ensure that the tea pieces fit into their teabags
  7. The black tea that we know and love is usually a mix of strong CTC teas: Assam and Kenyan
  8. We Brits like our tea especially strong  because we drink them with milk
  9. The orthodox method of processing is usually used for loose leaf teas while CTC processing is predominantly for teabags
  10. Teas such as Earl Grey and Darjeeling are lighter in taste and can be drunk without milk

To celebrate National Iced Tea Day, we have created super easy recipe for a refreshing Darjeeling Iced Tea.

  1. Boil up 1.5L fresh water (filtered if poss)
  2. Brew 3 tea bags per 700ml for about 5 mins
  3. Meanwhile, make up some sugar syrup by heating up 240ml of water and 200g of caster sugar for about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add sugar syrup to the tea with the juice of a lemon.
  5. Leave to cool before chilling in the fridge (if you do not leave to cool your tea will be cloudy!)
  6. Serve with ice and a sprig of mint or lavender

 

 

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THE BIG ISSUE NIGHT WALK : A Night To Remember

The Big Issue Night Walk

One evening during March, we at London Tea, packed up our boxes with some of our most popular teas and found our way to St John’s Church in Waterloo. We were gearing up to hand out over 300 cups of tea to eager members of the Big Night Walk, who’s 12 mile trek around London was about to commence!

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The night walkers came in twos and threes asking for a “builder’s” London Breakfast, or a warming Zingy Lemon and Ginger to set them up for the long walk ahead. Whilst the choir belted their own euphoric version of “Don’t Stop Believing”, we kept a constant flow of tea. The Big Issue Vendors followed telling the crowd their stories and offering honest and humbling speeches about the reality of homelessness.

The Big Issue Night Walk
Image courtesy of The Big Issue

We met some of the well-known Big Issue vendors and their pets, including Lionel and Menace the puppy…

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A Cat Named Bob (probably the most famous cat on the streets) and his human and former vendor James Bowen made an exciting appearance…

A Street Cat Named Bob
Image courtesy of The Big Issue

The Big Issue itself is so much more than a charity and having helped out at several of their fundraising events, we’ve really grown to appreciate the Big Issue as a huge encompassing community. Their goals are simple, striving to be:

“Vendor-centric – charity work led by the hopes and aspirations of Big Issue vendors

Inclusive – social and financial inclusion at the heart of their philosophy

Nonjudgemental – they work with anyone who is prepared to engage with self-help”

The aim of the walk was to raise money for the charity but also to give insight into the lives of their vendors and give people a flavour of the city of London at night. It was a truly rewarding opportunity to play an active role in the Big Issue community and hear stories of homeless people that aren’t usually heard.

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We had a wonderful evening, well spent and it was exciting to see such enthusiasm for a great cause.

If you want to support the Big Issue there are millions of ways to do so just head to the Big Issue website to see how you can get involved?

London Tea continues to support local homeless charities around London. To find out more about our other projects, click here!

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Fairtrade Fortnight

Darjeeling tea leaves

Here in the UK, we get through a whopping 165 million cups of tea every day. The majority of that tea is most likely to be from India, Sri Lanka or Africa.

In an age where traceability in our tea and food is becoming more and more essential, it’s important to us that we make sure you know where your tea has come from.

We at The London Tea Company, are lucky to be backed by our parent company Finlay’s, who own our amazing tea estates in Kericho, Kenya. This gives anyone that drinks our tea compete trust in the supply chain To Bring the Best from Bush to Cup®.

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Kericho Tea Fields

Because of this direct link to our suppliers, we know first-hand, the work that goes into producing tea. We know that it is vital to make constant improvements on the lives and communities of the people that work hard to bring us that cup of tea, which is why our team pays regular visits to the estates.

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Our tea taster Ottilie with Fairtrade Farmers and Co-operative Chairmen in Kericho, Kenya

Year after year, hundreds of projects take place to improve working quality and look for ways to feed back into the community.

You buying Fairtrade products, like our tea, is a small but vital part in that.

Tea Schools:

Some of the projects funded by Fairtrade are helping to improve tea schools that surround the plantations in Kenya. (Where our London Breakfast comes from!)

In 2014/2015 funds went into the construction of a brand new lab in Marinyn secondary school which allowed science lessons to become more engaging!

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The children enjoying the new lab at Marinyn secondary school, Kericho.

Every school child needs to eat their breakfast off a good table. So last year saw a full kit out of dining hall tables, benches and desks for Kericho Tea Boy’s High.

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New desks at Kericho Tea Boy’s High funded by Fairtrade.

 

Year after year, we notice improvements in these areas of the community, when the team visits Kericho.

Slowly but surely, we are helping to improve these communities and that all starts with a cup of tea.

Today is the start of Fairtrade Fortnight and for two weeks they will be harnessing the power of a Fairtrade breakfast.

During this time, Fairtrade will be encouraging campaigners to inspire Big Fairtrade Breakfasts in their community – and wake others up to the challenges facing farmers and workers.

Sit down for breakfast, stand up for farmers! 29 February – 13 March

Make sure you get involved by ordering our award winning London Breakfast Tea to kick start your Fairtrade brekkie. You can choose ANY of our products as they are all Fairtrade, shop now! Woo!