Minolta DSCI admit it.  I’m a tea newbie.  In fact, I’m not ashamed to say that I’ve only just recently learned where tea comes from, the difference between Earl Grey and English Breakfast, and, well, how to brew tea properly.  For some, this is quite shocking, given that I come from a Persian family in which tea is taken from the moment the alarm goes off to late at night, when decaf or herbal blends are consumed.  Even more shocking is the fact that my father works for one of the world’s largest tea manufacturers, Ahmad Tea London, and that this company is owned and run by family in the UK.  Maybe I should be ashamed.

Last year, I moved to New York City from Texas (I did have my fair share of iced tea in the South!) and I started working with Ahmad Tea, helping my father on the marketing side.  I was quite nervous at first.  I’m that quintessential city girl who until recently could not imagine a morning without her strong, black coffee and who rarely drank tea, except when I went home for a visit or to dinner events with my family.  What I’m discovering each and every day is not only how fascinating the world of tea is, but also how delicious!  I never thought I’d be a fan of green tea, but I’m absolutely addicted to mint green tea.  I feel like someone who has just gained his or her vision after years of blindness – everything seems so new and interesting and, more importantly, I see tea everywhere now.  Not only do I notice the various afternoon tea selections and tea-tasting experiences in cafes, but I’m seeing tea as a significant part of pop culture as well.  Everyone loves Downtown Abbey, right?  Ohhhh, Matthew Crawley…

Thank you for joining me in my tea-exploration adventures.  After all, I have to know what I’m talking about when I visit retailers and tea lovers, right?  I’m fortunate to have access to some key tea experts, like our Master Tea Taster (yes – that’s his title!), and to have the opportunity to meet tea enthusiasts around the globe, like Lady Sippington in New York City.  If you ever want to know how to properly host tea and have it all look like a beautiful piece of art, there’s no one better than Lady Sippington.

I’m excited to be a part of the wonderful and interesting conversations here at T Ching.  I look forward to many more conversations (over tea, of course!) and – hopefully – to growing from a tea novice to a tea expert!