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Give the Gift of Tea

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On my shopping list for those inclined to take tea instead of coffee is a beautiful box of tea by Palais des Thés. A gift box assortment of 8 single origin teas arrived on my doorstep the other day and within minutes my kettle whistled in jovial preparation! Soon I held a warm cup of this marvelous fragrant tea in my hands. I just could not wait to taste it. This was a splendid moment for the senses. You see, I just love tea.

For tea lovers, this is a perfect holiday gift. The Classic Signature tea set by PALAIS DES THÉS offers a selection of black, green, oolong, rooibos and dark teas in a stylish green box with magnetic closure. It looks like a large book, and when opened, it displays the teas with a chart to guide you in your selection. I love details like this. Suggestions for morning, afternoon and evening teas, as well as a how-to on proper tea preparation, makes the art of tea feel quite simple. As it should be.

“There is something in the nature of tea that leads us into a world of quiet contemplation of life.” Lin Yutang, The Importance Of Living

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The 8 teas in the Classic Signature Set contain cotton muslin tea bags (six per each tea):
– Long Jing: a remarkable Chinese green tea
– Margaret’s Hope: a delicious Himalayan black tea
– Sencha Ariake: a delicate Japanese green tea
– Grand Yunnan Impérial: a superb Chinese black tea
– Thé du Hammam: sweet green tea with red fruit
– Thé des Songes: Oolong with flowers and exotic fruit
– Vive le Thé !: green tea with ginger and citrus fruit
– Roiboos des Lords: caffeine-free Earl Grey

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My favorites from this box are many. I drink tea in the morning, throughout the day, and before bedtime, so I knew if I opened the box, I’d run out quickly. The first tea bags that were completely used were Rooibos des Lords, a caffeine-free Earl Grey. This rooibos (pronounced ROY-bos) tea is perfumed with bergamot and best enjoyed in the evening. My way of drinking this naturally sweet tea is to pour a splash of coconut creamer into my teacup and enjoy slowly.

“Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order. It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible thing we know as life.” Kakuzō Okakura, The Book of Tea

Darjeeling “Margaret’s Hope” is a summer darjeeling from the Himalayas. Dark, fruity and deep with flavor, it nourishes my soul. This is a tea I prefer to drink with cream, though it can be enjoyed without.

Grand Yunnan Impérial is another tea that filled my cup again and again. It is considered a morning tea, with notes of honey,  making it a perfect drink alone tea without need of adding anything to sweeten.

“Some people will tell you there is a great deal of poetry and fine sentiment in a chest of tea.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

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The traditional Japanese green teas such as Sencha Ariake and Long Jing are both exquisite. “Ariake” means “the waning of the moon at dawn” in Japanese, and its poetic term illustrates two lovers absorbed in their passionate embrace until dawn. The romantic in me remembers moments like this, which makes Sencha Ariake the morning tea for lovers after a blissful night of passion. It can be shared over breakfast. Who knows? Perhaps green tea can be a morning aphrodisiac.

The fragrance of Thé du Hammam evokes the Turkish baths, waters scattered with rose petals, orange blossoms, and leaves. Its relaxing, fruity aroma inspires the tea drinker to soak in a hot bath while sipping on this exquisite blend of green tea mingled with flowers.

Vive le Thé is a vibrant green tea spiced with ginger and citrus fruit. It’s light and cheery flavor delights and inspires. My daughters like this tea in particular as it was served at their backyard tea party in s porcelain teapot. Once tasted, both of my girls clamored into the kitchen for “more tea!”

I’ve just recently come to appreciate Oolong tea. Thé des Songes, an Oolong with flowers and exotic fruit, is good for relaxation into the evening. Its blend is enhanced with lavender and mallow petals. I sip on this while taking a steaming hot bath by candlelight.

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“There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.” Henry James

Tea for the tea lover on your holiday list seems a gift beyond value. It can be taken anytime of day or night, to find solace, relax, invigorate, clear the mind, all in a cup of tea.

“Surely everyone is aware of the divine pleasures which attend a wintry fireside; candles at four o’clock, warm hearthrugs, tea, a fair tea-maker, shutters closed, curtains flowing in ample draperies to the floor, whilst the wind and rain are raging audibly without.” Thomas de Quincey, Confessions of an English Opium Eater

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Discover Palais des Thés’ elegant gift collections. The box sets and samplers make a wonderful gift for tea lovers. Anyone can enjoy the art of tea: from the beginner to the connoisseur. The holiday season is made brighter with a warming cup of tea by the fire. Explore the teas online and artful teapots of supreme elegance to serve them in. Shop for the holidays with Palais des Thés tea selections at your fingertips. Not only do the tea sets make the holiday wish list, but the rainbow of tea assortments, decorative and functional teapots and kettles, and special blends of holiday teas can make your gift list more merry, peaceful and bright. I’m pleased to share my love of tea with you and hope your gift giving is inspired by the art of Palais des Thés.

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