When buying real teas, you deserve better than a mere transaction. At The Artisan Tea Hut, you can drink teas with us, discover craftsmanship with us, chat about life with us, and while away the hours with us.
It's a common thread that ties the stories of many who have discovered The Artisan Tea Hut. You were probably going down the path of consuming the seductive marketing of T2 and the like. "To be different. Think different. Drink different.""To break the mould and challenge the way things are done." The slogans appealed to your sense of individuality and expectation of quality.
A tea blend that tastes and smells of caramel? "What an exotic treat," you may have thought. However, you may not have thought too much about the fine print...
Then one spring day you visit The Artisan Tea Hut. You're unsure at first about a tearoom set in suburbia, but once you arrive, you get it. Surrounded by running water, grape vines and berry bushes, artisan-carved wooden decor, and inquisitive little animals, you realise such an intimate, fairyland-like setting wouldn't be possible in a commercial district cafe. You are greeted warmly by your hosts and fellow guests. Your hosts - who have studied tea science and culture in the ancient tea regions of China - tell you that they will be indulging and surprising all of your senses over the next three hours.
The first tea you are introduced to is called Cassia Oolong. The dry leaves are passed around the table for inspection and you are asked to share what aromas you pick up. Dark chocolate, cinnamon, coffee and almonds is the consensus at the table. The tea is then brewed with strict timing and temperature. You can smell a delectable fragrance waft over from metres away. The hosts then pass around the spent leaves in the teapot. Everyone agrees that the leaves now smell like a forest floor. The tea liquor is then poured from the fairness pitcher into the teacups, and everyone smells either a bouquet of flowers or a basket of fruit emanating from the cups they cradle in their hands. The tasting begins. Different flavours are picked up and debated - peanut brittle, caramel, toffee, molasses and maple syrup. The sweet aftertaste lingers in your throat. You are finally asked to smell the scent left behind in your empty teacup. You smell nougat. The person next to you smells frangipani flower. The others at the table smell honey and cream.
You check the ingredients. There's only one...
You have stumbled into a world you didn't know existed - tea plant breeds, growing conditions, vintages, production methods, brewing methods and, most importantly, gifted Chinese tea masters who have the rare skills to release a tea leaf’s full range of hidden flavours and aromas. Then you learn that tea is explored to such great depths in China that universities have bachelor, master, doctorate and post-doctorate programs in tea science and culture.
You are moved. You have rediscovered an age-old beverage that can be explored as widely and as deeply as your heart desires.
You have now realised that such slogans as "to break the mould and challenge the way things are done" have real meaning after all, but not when it comes to shopping mall stores merely exchanging goods for dollars. Rather, it is a place like The Artisan Tea Hut that is breaking the mould by embracing a social way of doing business. It is a place like The Artisan Tea Hut that is challenging the way things are done by celebrating tea masters and their craft instead of marketers and their gimmickry.