India’s tea customs include the tradition of blending cardamom seeds,
fennel, sugar, and milk to make chai. On tea gardens in the districts of Assam and Darjeeling, a good
cup fresh tea can almost always be found. There is some debate as to whether the Indians originally
learned of tea through British conquest or from experimentation with native plants.
England was not the only country to learn from China’s tea traditions, however, and other
countries that were in close contact with China developed their own unique infusion methods. Morocco,
Russia, Spain, and Portugal also modified Chinese tea methods to suit their own distinctive regional
tastes and preferences. The Japanese combined tea drinking with their own Taoist ideals, and the
popular tea preparation of Cha-no-yu emerged. In Cha-no-yu, the ceremony focuses on the beauty of
the tea preparation and the ability of the teamaker. The tradition of Sencha became popular as a
countermovement among humanists and the Chinese elite. Praise of cultural sophistication -- imitation
of Chinese values -- and refinement are embodied in the Sencha tradition, which was once more popular
From Japan, Korea and the Netherlands learned to enjoy tea, but once again, unique traditions were
incorporated into the brewing methods. Freshly boiling water is used to infuse a strong cup for five
to six minutes, and tea from China, Java, India, or Ceylon are preferred in the Netherlands. In
Korea, the way of tea was modified even more to include the habit of sipping raw egg in between hot
cups of tea.
"Upton Tea Imports was founded in 1989 with the objective of providing the North American tea drinker with
the finest teas available. We purchase teas from reputable brokers and estates worldwide, dealing only with
sources who are capable of providing top quality teas. We sell directly to the consumer, thus ensuring the
freshest product and fairest pricing."