November 21, 2018

DIY Tea Gifts

Hohoho!  The holiday season is rapidly approaching and it’s time to make your list and check it twice.  We all like to give our family and friends lovely things to let them know we love them, but these holiday gifts don’t have to break our bank accounts!   I found some really great “do it yourself” DIY tea gifts online that I like, and, hopefully, you will like them as well. Make a Magnetic Tea Chalkboard.  The teas or herbs in this gift can be packaged individually so your friends can create their own blends, or you can fill the tins with your favorite tea blends for them to try – like our popular holiday teas! 2.   Fill 1 Ounce Tea Tins with your favorite teas and create […]
November 20, 2018

Tea Dyed Gift Wrapping

  Want to take your tea obsession one step further this holiday season?  I’m wrapping all my gifts this year in custom made, tea dyed fabrics!  This wrapping is great for books, puzzles, clothes and more.  You can also custom create your own gift – tea-dye shirts, socks, napkins, placemats…. the possibilities are endless. I toodled over to Joann’s Fabrics and found some bleached and unbleached muslin fabric.  I did a test run yesterday of 4 teas/herbs and the results for 3 of them were better than I imagined. I found some great information on how-to for dying fabrics at DIY Natural and at WikiHow.   First I ground all the teas & herbs I was using into smaller pieces (list below); then I measured 2 tsp of the […]
October 23, 2018

Holiday Gifts – 2018

The Holiday Gifts season is rushing towards us at breakneck speed!  Are you ready?  We’ve been working all Spring and Summer on new gifts and updating our most popular gifts from 2017.  We’re proud to show you the results of our efforts! Black & Green Tea Samplers – Updated   For 2018 we’ve updated the offerings in these gift boxes as well as changed the labels on the package.  These packages now list the tea name, description and brewing information right on the bag. Dessert Tea Sampler – Updated   Two (2) new dessert teas were added to the line this Summer: Baklava Black Tea and Blueberry Cinnamon Crumble.  The 2018 Dessert tea gift box features these 2 new teas as well as the 8 most popular blends […]
September 25, 2018

Fabulous Foods for Festive Fall Fetes

Do you love to bake?  Or are you hopeless in the kitchen but still want the aromas and the praise for delivering festive Fall treats? Whatever level of kitchen prowess you possess, we’ve got you covered. Fabulous Foods First, for the baking from scratch folks, here are some links to recipes you can make to capture all the taste sensations associated with the Fall season.  Tea Cakes, scones, pies and more! Fall Tea Cake Recipes   This blog from foods52 features 10 tea cakes that are perfect for the Fall season.  Pictured at left is their Chocolate Pumpkin Loaf.  Try it with a China Yunnan tea like our Cangyuan organic black. Other recipes include: Cinnamon Scone Bread – try with our Colombian Tippy Organic Black Tea Brown Butter […]
June 25, 2018

Making Cold Brew Tea

You’ve probably heard of cold brew coffee, but have you tried cold brewed tea yet? Enjoy cold brew teas this summer as a refreshing option to your usual iced tea brewing method.  Cold brewing is easy: Simply add your tea leaves to a jar or container, fill with cold water and refrigerate.  Then strain out the leaves and enjoy!For more detailed directions:  You’ll need to use more tea than when brewing hot. Place a 1 ounce iced teabag or 1 ounce of loose tea in a 1/2 gallon container. Fill with water, secure the lid and refrigerate 6-10 hours.  Pull the teabag out of the water (or strain out the tea leaves).  Pour the cold brewed tea in a tall glass, add water if needed, and enjoy. Like […]
April 2, 2018

New Literary Tea: Maya Angelou!

Creating a tea blend to honor an inspiring and influential woman Poet, Author, Dancer, Actor, Singer, Activist, Teacher … Maya Angelou was a true Renaissance Woman.  Born Marguerite Johnson, Dr. Maya Angelou has inspired millions around the globe.  Her honest, witty, insightful books and her uplifting poetry and prose give us a fresh way to look at the world around us. Her numerous speeches, writings and interviews offer us the gift of her intelligence and grace to carry with us throughout our years.  In a May 28, 2014 interview Dr. Angelou said “What I really want to do is be a representative of my race.  The human race.  I have a chance to show how kind we can be.  How intelligent and generous we can be.  I have […]
March 13, 2018

New Teas from around the Globe

Great news from the tea sippers at Simpson & Vail. We’re thrilled to offer you 16 new teas from around the world! We had a very enjoyable time sipping samples of various teas before settling on the selection below. Colombia: Read our blog post here about seven new Colombian teas: black, green and blended. China: Cangyuan Yunnan Organic Black Tea This exquisite organic tea is grown in Cangyuan county, a remote location in western Yunnan.  It is comprised of long black and tippy leaves interspersed with ample golden buds.  It brews to an amber colored cup with the slight aroma of pipe tobacco and a smooth, creamy, slightly sweet full-bodied taste.   Da Hong Pao Organic Oolong Tea This exquisite Oolong tea comes from the Song Meng Garden […]
March 7, 2018

Seven New Teas from Bitaco Tea in Colombia

Freshly picked and blended in Colombia In October 2017 we were pleased to have Santiago and Andres from Bitaco Tea visit us in Brookfield.  Besides putting a face to the voice on the phone, it was fantastic to hear more about their history and operations.  Bitaco Tea is an offshoot of a very well known branded teabag tea Te Hindu.  After many years, and much success, in the teabag market they decided to cultivate a new market with orthodox teas.  Knowing much about teabag production but not enough about orthodox processing and organic growing methods, they set out to hire some of the best in the tea world to consult with them on their new venture.  The results have been outstanding and every tea shipment we get from […]
November 19, 2017

Holiday Gift Ideas

    The holiday season is rapidly approaching and our little elves have been busy creating lovely a holiday gift for all the tea loving friends and family members on your list! After customer requests for tea only gifts, we introduced last year a few lovely selections.  This year we have improved these selections with the addition of our colorful gift labels. The holiday season should be a time to enjoy  ice skating, choral festivals, caroling, decorating the tree, visiting friends, baking, etc., however, it often descends into madness while you race from place to place searching for the “perfect” gifts for loved ones.  We hope these gifts will make your holiday shopping easier so you can enjoy the spirit of the season!       Black Tea […]
November 8, 2017

Easy & Delicious Holiday Cookies (Part II)

We introduced you to Refrigerator Shortbread Holiday Cookies in our previous blog post, now here’s another great recipe that you can make ahead of time and bake as needed.  It’s perfect for the busy holiday season and so unique and delectable your family and friends will truly be delighted! Matcha & Hibiscus Swirl Cookies Ingredients: 1 cup butter (softened) 1 cup sugar 2 eggs 1 tsp vanilla extract 3 cups flour ½ tsp baking powder ½ tsp Kosher salt 1 pkg. Vanilla Matcha powder 1 ½ Tbsp Hibiscus, ground Directions: Cream together the butter and sugar in large mixing bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix. Next add the flour, baking powder and salt, and mix well. Split the dough in half and put in separate bowls. […]