basket account menu close
free shipping on orders over $100 CAD


Cavendish Sunset Tea

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

Cavendish Sunset Tea is an exotic blend of sweet grenadine essence brought together on a top quality Ceylon black tea and decorated with golden marigold flowers. It's one of our most popular and flavorful teas.

What type of tea do we use? How do we flavor the tea? And why do we use natural flavors?

Firstly... we only use high grown teas from the top 3 tea growing regions of Sri Lanka - Nuwara Eliya, Dimbula and Uva.These three high-grown districts produce flavorful teas that have classic ‘Ceylon’ tea character which is noted by floral bouquet and flavor notes, touches of mild astringency, bright coppery color and, most importantly - perfect for use as the base tea of our flavored teas. (We have tested teas from various other origins around the world as base stock for our flavored teas,but none of these teas made the grade.) Dimbula and the western estates of Nuwara Eliya have a major quality peak during Jan/Feb, whereas Uva and the eastern estates of Nuwara Eliya have their peak in July/Aug. This ‘dual peak period’ allows us to buy the best for our flavored tea blends several times during the year, ensuring top quality and freshness.

Secondly... we use flavoring oils not crystals to give the tea drinker an olfactory holiday before indulging in a liquid tea treat. Thirdly… we specify natural flavors. High quality tea tastes good and natural flavors do not mask the natural taste of the high grown Ceylon tea. (The norm for many making flavored tea is to use overpowering artificial flavors, which can be used to hide lower quality tea). Natural flavors do not leave an aftertaste giving the tea a clean and true character. It should be noted that natural flavors tend to be somewhat ‘soft ‘ and the flavors slightly muted, but for many this is a refreshing change and one of the desired attributes of our naturally flavored teas.

Hot tea brewing method: Bring filtered or freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea, 1 tea bag or 1 Q3 single serve packet for each 7-9oz/200-260ml of fluid volume in the teapot. Pour the boiling water into the teapot. Cover and let steep for 3-7 minutes according to taste (the longer the steeping time the stronger the tea). Add milk and sugar to taste.

Iced tea brewing method (Individual Serving): Place 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea into a teapot for each serving required. Using filtered or freshly drawn cold water, boil and pour 6-7oz/170-200ml per serving over the tea. Cover and let steep for 5 minutes. Add hot tea to a 12oz/375ml acrylic glass filled with ice, straining the tea or removing the bags. Not all of the tea will fit, allowing for approximately an additional ½ serving. Sweeten and/or add lemon to taste. A rule of thumb when preparing fresh brewed iced tea is to increase the strength of hot tea since it will be poured over ice and diluted. (Note: Some luxury quality teas may turn cloudy when poured over ice. This is a sign of luxury quality and nothing to worry about!)

Ideal Brewing Temperature: 100ºC/212ºF. Minimum Brewing Temperature: 90ºC/194ºF.



What is Black Tea?

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

It was once believed that green teas and black teas, oolongs and whites, were produced from different species of tea plants. This is certainly NOT the case. All tea (thea sinensis) comes from the evergreen plant of the Camellia family. The reason that some leaves are green and others black is all do with how the leaves are treated (or not treated) after they have been plucked. 

Black teas are the most processed of all teas. Methods do differ from region to region however the process always involves four basic steps: withering, rolling, fermenting and firing.  Plucked leaves are spread out to wither until they are limp enough to be rolled without affecting the integrity of the surface of the leaf. Next the withered leaf is rolled in order to release the chemicals in the leaves that are essential to the final colour and flavour.  Some factories still do rolling by hand but Rotorvane machines are becoming more and more popular.  After the leaves are rolled they are broken up and spread out in a cool, humid atmosphere for 3.5 to 4.5 hours in order to absorb oxygen which causes chemical changes in the leaf particles – morphing them from a green colour to a coppery red. Lastly, the oxidized leaf is fired in order to stop the natural decomposition process and at this stage the coppery red leaves turn black and acquire their recognizable tea smell. Traditionally firing was carried out in large pans over open fires and this method is still used in some Chinese factories though most producers now pass the tea through hot air tunnels or bake it in hot ovens.

Our Black Teas

Blackcurrant and Rum

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
Cup Characteristics: Deep black currant aroma and flavor. Just imagine a currant bush full of berries. Stunning as 
an iced tea. 
Black Currant is also known as Cassis. It is both a propagated and wild grown berry which some claim originated in France. 
Cassis is a very popular beverage throughout Europe, known for being aromatic in smell and in taste. This particular aspect of 
Black Currant is very evident on this tea. Black Currant gained notoriety in 1712 for its beneficial properties, which were 
published by the Abbot Bailly inferring that Black Currant was indeed an aphrodisiac and should be consumed with great care. Perhaps this is why it is one of more popular teas. On a hot summer day Black Currant quenches one’s thirst very well. 

Is there Caffeine in Tea?

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

Tea contains natural caffeine found in the L. Camellia Sinensis family. A cup of black tea steeped in boiled water for 5 minutes will contain between 27 to 35 mg of caffeine – about the same amount as an equal serving of Coca-Cola **. An equal sized cup of coffee will contain between 80 – 100 mg of caffeine. Caffeine quickly becomes soluble in very hot water.

If you wish to reduce the caffeine level in this tea, briefly rinsing the tea leaves in extremely hot water will reduce the caffeine content between 25-50% with only a minor effect on taste.

** As reported by Health Canada


What is White Tea?

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

White teas are considered by some to be the purest in the world. Spring buds are plucked, dried and sorted - no pan firing or steaming, no fermentation, just pure tea. Traditionally these are grown on small freehold plots - some growers produce only a few hundred pounds per year. Our trusted relationships with finished leaf manufacturers ensure that we're able to secure quantities of even the rarest whites, often before they reach auction, helping to keep profits in growers' pockets. Note: White tea has a very high polyphenol count.


Earl Grey Tea

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
early grey tea
Earl Grey is the West's most popular tea, most popular black tea, and most popular scented tea, in that order. Named after the 1830s British Prime Minister, Earl Grey is traditionally any tea scented with oil of Bergamot, a fruit which resembles an ugly orange found in Mediterranean climes. Corfu was the center of the Bergamot trade during the same decades it was headquarters for the British Mediterranean fleet, commanded by Lord Grey in London. Successive generations of heirs to the tea firms of Twining and Jacksons of Piccadilly accused one another's ancestors of having stolen Milord's recipe, which seems originally to have been entrusted to Jacksons.

Dalvay Breeze

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
Dalvay Breeze Tea
Dalvay by the Sea is a wonderful beach area just north of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. The sunrises and sunsets are spectacular. Shirley and I love it so much, we had our wedding reception in 1986 at the famous Dalvay-by-the-Sea Inn.  Mint tea is the national drink of Morocco and is truly one of the world’s great tea blends. Tea itself was introduced to Morocco in the mid 19th century by the British. The addition of mint is believed to have first happened in the bazaar at Tangiers a short while thereafter. Merchants discovered that infusing the blend produced a drink that was at once vigorous and soothing, thanks to the therapeutic qualities of mint. If you have ever been to Morocco and haggled over a rug you can appreciate the importance of those two qualities! True to the spirit of the original blend our tea is flavoured with a pungent and refreshing mint. This bright and invigorating tea is perfect any time of day.

Ideal Brewing Temperature: 100ºC/212ºF. Minimum Brewing Temperature: 90ºC/194ºF.


Victoria Garden Tea

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
Victoria Garden

Half and half of Ceylon leaf and China green gunpowder form the basis of this glorious gentle blend with vanilla flavouring and pieces and lavender flowers and rose petals added. 

Ideal Brewing Temperature: 100ºC/212ºF. Minimum Brewing Temperature: 90ºC/194ºF.




Sakura Cherry Green Tea

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

Sakura Cherry Green Tea

Shop Sakura Cherry Green Tea

Hunan Province produces some excellent Japanese style green teas. Early in the new season the tea is a bright emerald green and has the best flavor noted by a spring fresh character with pungency and body. In Hunan the tea starts growing about March 15th, and between then and the end of April the quality is very good. Once you pass April, the quality plummets on account of the volume of leaf taken in and the bushes growing too quickly. Our policy is that we only buy our China tea requirements from tea grown between March 15 and April 15 - you will taste our quality and dedication to better tea when you compare our tea with similarly graded teas. Sencha is commonly used in Japanese tea ceremonies marking events of personal importance. In this type of ceremony it is the ritual that is of paramount importance as the individual is being acknowledged. Flavored tea is a relatively new phenomena and combining flavors with roses and Japanese style green tea is almost considered ‘Avant Garde’ by our Japanese friends.

Kyoto is the cultural center of Japan. Several centuries ago Kyoto was the religious capital of Japan. The relics of this past are evident throughout the city. Beside the multitude of temples that dot the city, and the wonderful parks where religious scholars once walked, the city has more the 1000 Torjii - those typical gate/arch structures that one associates with Japan. The Torjii are large with the top shaped like a curved samurai sword (respect) and the two pillars are solid and stately (well-being). During the springtime this area of Japan is ablaze with the new season cherry blossoms and the air is filled with sweet aroma. (The rose petals in this blend are intended to simulate these delicate cherry blossoms. The flavor is reminiscent of the beautiful smells that waft on the springtime breezes.) It is little wonder that this ancient city has a very high ratio of tearooms and this tea was created to honor (very important in Japan) this wonderful time of the year.

The tea tends light liquoring, fresh and smooth with reasonable depth and body. The cherry flavoring and subtle rose hints give the tea a wonderful exotic character. 

Ideal Brewing Temperature: 100ºC/212ºF. Minimum Brewing Temperature: 90ºC/194ºF.