High-quality tea subscriptions?

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faj
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Sat Dec 07, 2019 10:34 pm

I wonder if there are tea subscriptions you would consider worthwhile.

I would only consider a subscription offering a well curated, small amount of high-quality teas as a way to learn and discover. I would not want to receive amounts of tea that would make up a significant fraction of what I drink. I also would not want to get teas that are, on average, of lower quality than what I would tend to select myself. I do not mind if shipments are monthly or less frequent, or if they contain more of a single tea, or many smaller samples.

Do you know of tea subscriptions that would, in your opinion, fit that purpose?
twt_reddit
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:53 am

From my recollection essence of tea's tea club seems to fit that bill..
Slurp
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:44 am

The white2tea club is quite popular, but I believe it tends to be very much focused on white & puer teas.
faj
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 10:20 am

twt_reddit wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:53 am
From my recollection essence of tea's tea club seems to fit that bill..
Thanks a lot for the pointer. I have very, very little experienced puerh (and I probably never tasted anything of decent quality), but maybe that would be a good way to get my feet wet in a way that is less intimidating.

There is no indication of the amount of tea they typically ship. Do you have experience with that?
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Victoria
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 10:40 am

Baña tea company has so good sample sets of pu’erh. She’s shipping out of Los Angeles https://www.banateacompany.com/pages/sampler_teas.html
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lUKAV28
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:01 pm

thetea.pl has a really nice subscription if you like to get to know better different varieties of tea. Usually you get 3 types of tea from young to aged pu erhs to oolongs, liu bao, red teas and so on. I do prefer essenceoftea club a bit more because it is one tea per month so I can spend more time with it as you get quite a lot of it but on the other hand it is heavily focused on young sheng with occasional liu bao or yancha material so it is therefore less adventurous. For getting to know tea, thetea.pl is really good and is not too expensive (24$). My only problem with it is that you get around 20g sample packs per tea (at least 50g total) - or for one session if some special tea is picked - so sometimes I do crave for more but he sells online some of the teas he picks for the club so you can order more if you really like particular tea. He also offers free shipping for any additional tea if you order it with tea club.
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lUKAV28
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:20 pm

faj wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 10:20 am
twt_reddit wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:53 am
From my recollection essence of tea's tea club seems to fit that bill..
Thanks a lot for the pointer. I have very, very little experienced puerh (and I probably never tasted anything of decent quality), but maybe that would be a good way to get my feet wet in a way that is less intimidating.

There is no indication of the amount of tea they typically ship. Do you have experience with that?
It depends on how pricey the tea they select is. But overall you get quite a lot of tea, this month they shipped 100g of 2003 (I think) ripe pu, during the summer there was around 150g of tasty maocha, for the past two months they sent two gushu maochas that they just now blended and pressed into cakes, there was 50g yancha, around 120g of 2017 and 2019 wild sheng. But yeah I was not always happy with the selection as some picks felt rushed (tea not just ready for drink) but I can always return to that tea and taste how it improves over time.
Chadrinkincat
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:27 pm

EOT has a great club. It generally offers things I’d normally never purchase such as young sheng, dancong, aged shou, liubao, red tea, aged yancha. Good quality teas.

So far this year
Dancong, 03 Menghai tea factory loose shou, high roast yancha, 90’s yancha, lots of loose young sheng, red tea, young + 90’s liubao
twt_reddit
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:51 pm

faj wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 10:20 am
twt_reddit wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:53 am
From my recollection essence of tea's tea club seems to fit that bill..
Thanks a lot for the pointer. I have very, very little experienced puerh (and I probably never tasted anything of decent quality), but maybe that would be a good way to get my feet wet in a way that is less intimidating.

There is no indication of the amount of tea they typically ship. Do you have experience with that?
to add to the answers of the actual EoT club members- Essence of Tea Club - teas of the past
faj
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 4:20 pm

lUKAV28 wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:20 pm
It depends on how pricey the tea they select is. But overall you get quite a lot of tea, this month they shipped 100g of 2003 (I think) ripe pu, during the summer there was around 150g of tasty maocha, for the past two months they sent two gushu maochas that they just now blended and pressed into cakes, there was 50g yancha, around 120g of 2017 and 2019 wild sheng.
That is probably too much tea for me. I would not want a subscription to represent such a large portion of my tea drinking, unless it was targeting tea types I drink daily (i.e. not puerh at this time) and was of an average quality at least as high (but preferably higher) than what I would purchase on my own.

I would expect that with experience, I will develop favorite teas and drink more of these, and then aim to sample teas that have a chance of improving my enjoyment (becoming or replacing favorites). Getting a subscription that brings me so-so teas, which I then force myself to drink (or discard), would feel like a waste.
Slurp
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:33 pm

Instead of a club, have you considered sampler packs? Various vendors offer them. As an example:

https://yunomi.life/products/the-ultima ... c263&_ss=r

https://crimsonlotustea.com/collections ... e-elements

https://www.teavivre.com/award-winning- ... packs.html

(Note: This isn't necessarily a recommendation of any of these vendors/offerings, just an example of what's out there.)

You just missed a great deal on the Yunomi sampler, it was 30% off for black Friday.
faj
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:37 pm

Slurp wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:33 pm
Instead of a club, have you considered sampler packs?
I have. I actually recently ordered samples from a vendor dedicated to teas of a particular origin, and this is something I am likely to keep on doing in the future. I see that as complementary. A bit of guidance would be welcome too, in case it helps me gravitate to the better sources more quickly. It is not very useful sampling the teas of vendors that have a less interesting range of teas to start with.

I drink Japanese teas almost every day. Any comments on Yunomi compared to other vendors? I was recently recommended O-Cha, Thés du Japon, as well as Kettl and Maiko on this forum. I am still going through my current stock of Japanese tea, but I look forward to the opportunity to try new sources, quality being my primary concern.
Slurp
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:30 pm

Yunomi isn't really a vendor per se, it's a marketplace through which dozens of different tea farms sell their teas. I find it more hit and miss than o-cha.com (which I recommend unhesitatingly), but has much better variety than what you can find on o-cha, particularly if you like (or want to try) less common (in the west) teas like kukicha or genmaicha.
faj
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Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:38 pm

Slurp wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 9:30 pm
Yunomi isn't really a vendor per se, it's a marketplace through which dozens of different tea farms sell their teas. I find it more hit and miss than o-cha.com (which I recommend unhesitatingly), but has much better variety than what you can find on o-cha, particularly if you like (or want to try) less common (in the west) teas like kukicha or genmaicha.
Thanks a lot for the very useful information.
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Brent D
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Mon Dec 09, 2019 10:59 am

Global tea hut. The magazine alone is worth the subscription.
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