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Enjoyment Reading Tea Leaves

Reading the Future of Tea

Chris Cason

Ever gaze into the bottom of your mostly-empty teacup and imagine that there was a pattern forming in the gathering dust? Some folks believe that this collection of leaves can actually foretell the future! Tasseomancy, the art of reading tea leaves, has intrigued tea lovers and mystics alike for hundreds of years.

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Enjoyment Numi's Flowering Tea

2005: A Year of Tea in Review, pt. 2

Chris Cason

In our last action-packed episode of TeaMuse, we rummaged through the newest offerings of 2005 and disinterred the worst products the tea world had to offer. In this month's season finale, we'll explore and extol the best tea products of the year. But first, a quick recap of those that were covered last month:

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Enjoyment ReadyWhenUR Tea Kettle

2005: A Year of Tea in Review, pt. 1

Chris Cason

With our 2005 calendars getting slim and the holidays swiftly approaching, it seems like the right time to start looking back on all that has happened. This has been a great year for the tea world, full of new innovations and giant leaps forward. However, there have also been some things that, in hindsight, we'd all rather pretend didn't occur.

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History Opium Smokers

Multiple Infusions and the National Archives

Chris Cason

I was recently approached by the U.S. National Archives Dept. and asked to contribute a few words for a new exhibit on tea and early Philadelphia. The exhibit, based in the Philadelphia Archives Building, has since been completed and opened to the public through November 2005.

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Enjoyment Guarani Shaman

Yerba Mate: New Herbal trends

Chris Cason

Just when you thought you've tried every tea on the map, a new blip appears on the radar, a new variation on the classic tea theme. In this month's edition of TeaMuse, we'll explore the newest fad from the tea scene, Yerba Mate.

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Enjoyment Woman enjoying tea

Mother's Tea: Ideas for Mom

Chris Cason

As a tea guru and local celebrity, I'm always solicited for advice. Among these questions, one of the most frequent is, "is it okay to drink tea when I'm pregnant?" (I then remind my brother that he cannot get pregnant). In honor of Mother's Day (and in all seriousness), I'll tackle this question and more.

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Enjoyment Darjeeling

Fresh Flush: A New Year of Teas

Chris Cason

"April is the cruelest month," T.S. Eliot once wrote. But most tea aficionados disagree. This month's weather may get most folks down (or maybe it's simply that they are poetically discontent), but it is a time of celebration in the tea world.

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Health & Beauty Beer

The Health Benefits of Tea: Then and Now

Chris Cason

"Which is better for me, tea or beer?" How many times have you asked yourself this very question? During my latest venture to keep myself abreast of tea's many health benefits, I stumbled upon a gem of an article called "The evils of tea (and the virtues of beer)." This essay shows just how much of an impact serious scientific thought has had on our culture.

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Enjoyment Chamomile Tea

Chamomile Tea: hot off the presses

Chris Cason

Virtually any flower, fruit or herb that can be ingested can become an herbal tea. Just take a trip to your local health food store and you'll find dozens of "medicinal infusions" boasting a variety of benefits from relaxation to rejuvenation. But let's be honest: when most folks reach for an herbal tea, they're probably going for Chamomile.

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History Chris Cason with Santa

Giving Tea

Chris Cason

Dear Santa, This year, my holiday wishes have changed. I've decided not to ask for a puppy again (as this request has gone unrequited for our past two correspondences), but instead have found something even more desirable: tea.

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Culture Samovar

The Tea Ceremony: Passing through Customs

Chris Cason

As the second-most popular beverage in the world, it is not surprising that many practices have developed worldwide to enjoy tea. In this installment of TeaMuse, we'll take a journey through the world of tea (no passport required!) and explore the many customs that have been infused into different cultures.

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Enjoyment Shen Nung

The Tea Bag: Let it Loose!

Chris Cason

n this installment of your favorite Tea Newsletter, I will tackle one of the most difficult problems facing modern tea: the popularity (and inferiority) of teabags. Nowadays, tea bags make up about 95% of all tea sales in the US. These bags, however, usually contain the cheapest tea available, producing little more than a brown-colored liquid. Doesn't sound too appetizing, huh?

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Enjoyment Iced Tea

Iced Tea (or, How I'll Spend My Summer Vacation)

Chris Cason

For those without the benefit of a calendar, Memorial Day has come and passed. This is significant for two reasons: First, it means I can finally wear my white shoes at the mansion in the Hamptons. Second, it signals that summer, Iced Tea season, has officially begun. It is time to hang up those hot tea mugs, replace them for giant, frosty glasses, thirsty for iced tea.

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History Rooibos Tea

Rooibos Tea

Chris Cason

Deep in the heart of South Africa, in the mountains and valleys of the Cedarberg region near Cape Town, vast vistas, fields of verdant green bushes, fill the landscape. Traveling throughout this precipitous expanse, one may not suspect that this bright bush, which the locals refer to as "Rooibos," (pronounced roy-boss), could be such a versatile and remarkable herb.

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Culture The Queen

God Save the Queen...

Chris Cason

When most people think of the English, certain qualities come to mind: Irrevocably bad teeth, a Monarchy that holds office merely for the sake of Comedy - and a painstaking penchant for the perfect cup of tea. However, through several excursions to the UK, I have discovered that one of these presuppositions has proven false.

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Drinks & Eats view Ceylon Ravioli

Think Outside the Cup: Cooking with Tea

Chris Cason

As a self-proclaimed chef and aficionado of all things culinary, I am always looking for new recipes, different flavors and fresh ideas. One night, while pondering the nightly question, "what's for dinner?" over a cup of tea, I was struck with inspiration. Looking into my steaming brew, I had a revolutionary idea: tea... in food.

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Enjoyment White Darjeeling

2004: Year of the Leaf

Chris Cason

You hear the same resolutions every year: "This year is the year that I'll get healthy... or, I will stop spending so much money... or, I'm gonna slow down and stop stressing so much." Of course, tea is the simple (not to mention delicious, healthy, inexpensive and soothing) solution to all of these resolutions. But I need not cover these resolutions to a congregation of tea followers.

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