North American Tea Championship Winners

NA Tea Championship Winners

In 2012, two of our teas placed in the North American Tea Championship! It’s a competition judged by professional cuppers to distinguish the highest quality and best tasting teas commercially available in the North American marketplace. Our Genmaicha won first place in the Green Tea Category for Packaged Single-Service Class and our Wild Forest Black won third place in the Black Tea Category for Packaged Single-Service Class!

In celebration of this honor and Hot Tea Month, we’re giving awayTea Champ Awards three sets of one box of our Wild Forest Black and one box of our Genmaicha. To enter to win, just let us know your favorite place to drink tea during the winter in a comment below. Is it at your desk, curled up in your favorite chair, or somewhere else? We’ll pick three random winners on January 31st to receive these award winning teas!

Hot Tea Month and New Year’s Resolution Contest!

Happy 2012! As we journey into the New Year, it’s a great time to reflect on goals and aspirations for the coming months. To celebrate Hot Tea Month while renewing (or beginning!) a commitment to a happier, healthier life for many folks, we’re giving away four herbal teas: Chamomile, Peppermint, Ginger, and Rooibos.  To enter, just let us know your New Year’s resolution below. We’ll pick a winner on January 23rd.

Iced Tea Recipes for Hot Summer Days

Summer is now in full swing, which means, if you’re like me, you’re looking for a healthy, economical way to stay hydrated and refreshed during the longer, hotter days. Iced tea to the rescue!  Whether you like the classic black teas or are searching for something different to tango with your taste buds, there are many options that can all be made from the comfort of your own home.

One of the best things about brewing your own iced tea is the super fresh flavor you’ll get from steeping your own organic tea leaves.  You can also control the amount and kind of sweetener you use–perfect if you’re looking to avoid soda or decrease your sugar intake.  You also reduce your packaging waste and save money.

There are a few ways to make iced tea, so try experimenting until you find the one you like best.   For the quickest method, boil water and steep twice the amount of tea that you would normally brew per cup (so 2 tea bags to every 8 oz in this case), but don’t steep for twice as long, as this can produce a bitter flavor.  (Quick refresh: 5 minutes for black teas and herbals, 2-3 for whites and greens). Once steeped, remove the tea bags and pour over ice-you’ll want to generously fill your cup or pitcher with ice before pouring so the tea cools quickly.

Another option is to brew your tea, allow it to cool for a few minutes, and then place in the fridge to continue cooling.  A third option is to try cold brewing: the night before, add 2 tea bags per 8 oz in a pitcher of cold water and place in fridge.  Allow to brew overnight, then remove tea bags the next day and enjoy!

So what teas should you use?  Well of course, there are the traditional black teas: English Breakfast, Darjeeling, Wild Forest Black, and Classic Black are all great choices. Add some lemonade for an Arnold Palmer. The home brew method is great for this too, as you can do a 50/50 mix or just top your black tea with a splash of lemonade for a little sweetness. Earl Grey also makes for lovely iced tea, and feel free to mix with a few bags of English Breakfast if you find the Bergamot a bit strong.  Try Chai Spice iced (sweetener optional, of course) for the spicy flavor of cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves.  And one of our most popular iced teas, Mango Ceylon, is delicious on its own or with some mango lemonade.

Mint teas add an extra “aah” factor. Go for Green Moroccan Mint alone or try adding some limeade for a mojito-esque refreshment.Our new Yerba Maté Mint is delicious iced for the maté lover. Also, try mixing Peppermint tea bags with black tea bags for a hint of mint with a mostly classic flavor. Or, to opt for a caffeine-free herbal brew, try Lemon Lavender Mint or Chamomile Spearmint. Did I mention all of these are excellent with some fresh mint leaves added? Be sure to crush them to extract more of the mint’s flavor.

If you haven’t given Rooibos iced tea a try, do! Our classic Rooibos and Rooibos+Vanilla are delicious “new favorites” that can definitely hold their own against the more traditional blends.  Try our new Rooibos Superfruit with orange slices for some extra tanginess.  You just might find this rich, earthy herb is your new glass of choice.

With home brewed iced tea, there are endless possibilities! These are just a few suggestions, but we’d love to hear what you’re brewing all summer long! Comment here and you’ll enter to win 3 boxes of our favorite teas to brew iced. We’ll pick a winner on Tuesday, July 26th. Happy summer and happy brewing!

Win tickets to Green Festival Seattle!

We’re getting pumped about Green Festival Seattle this weekend, May 21st & 22nd, and we’ve got 4 pairs of tickets to give away!

Just comment on this post with your favorite tea for a chance to enter! Winners will be chosen on Wednesday, May 18th and can pick up their tickets at our office in Georgetown on Thursday and Friday between 8:30 and 5:00.

Good luck and we hope to see you this weekend! Don’t forget to stop by for lots of yummy samples and say hello to us at booth #462!

What new tea would you like to see from Choice Organic Teas?

Your favorite organic tea company is looking ahead to decide which new products we will introduce next year, and we want your feedback!  We’d love to know what flavors are you craving, is there a particular ingredient you’ve been looking for? Straight teas or blends, herbals or decafs-what is it that you haven’t found on the shelf that’s been on your mind?

Share your thoughts with us below by May 2nd and you’ll enter to win a giveaway of two spiffy spring green Choice Organic Teas mugs, along with a box of tea of your choice.  A big thanks to all who leave your ideas, we couldn’t do it without you!