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Seasonal Tea

2017 Early Spring Green Needles

Doug Palas 2017 China Early Spring Green Tea Hubei

2017 Early Spring Green Needles

China celebrates the Qing Ming festival on April 5th to honor the passing of friends and relatives. For tea growers it represents the deadline for the first harvest of the year.  Tea harvested before April 5th is called Ming Qian or Pre-Qing Ming tea. Kilogram designates the earliest harvested tea as “Early Spring” since some tea won’t make the April 5th harvest deadline, but will still have the Ming Qian quality. Harvesting early is important for several reasons- tea plants are harvested several times a year, but allowing the leaves a long layoff during the winter will create healthy, nutrient-rich...

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2017 Early Spring White Peony

Doug Palas 2017 China Early Spring Fujian White Tea

2017 Early Spring White Peony

Drinking freshly harvested tea is a completely different experience than drinking tea even 6 months later.   Fresh tea is sweeter, less astringent, and has a subtle complexity.  Our commitment to offering a rare glimpse into the flavor of fresh tea is best exemplified by our Early Spring Collection.  Each year we select small lots of tea from the very first harvest of the year.  We choose a variety of small production China and Japan green teas, an occasional high elevation black tea, but the style of tea that benefits most from an early harvest is white tea. White peony, or...

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Exploring the Uniquely Flavored Schizandra Berry

Doug Palas Caffeine Free China Schizandra

Exploring the Uniquely Flavored Schizandra Berry

The schizandra berry has been used in Chinese medicine for hundreds of years. It is often referred to as "five flavor berry" due to it being simultaneously sweet, sour, bitter, salty, and pungent in flavor. This combination in conjunction with juniper notes make this one of the most intriguing beverage ingredients that I have ever come across.

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2017 Early Spring Snow Sprout

Doug Palas 2017 Early Spring White Tea Yunnan

2017 Early Spring Snow Sprout

Drinking freshly harvested tea is a completely different experience than drinking tea even 6 months later.   Fresh tea is sweeter, less astringent, and has a subtle complexity.  Our commitment to offering a rare glimpse into the flavors of fresh tea is best exemplified by our Early Spring Collection.  Each year we select small lots of tea from the very first harvest of the year.  We often choose a variety of small-production green teas from China and Japan or the occasional high-elevation black tea, but the style of tea that benefits most from an early harvest is white tea. Our first...

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Tokoname Ware

Doug Palas Japan Tokoname

Tokoname Ware

Tokoname is a town located in Aichi Prefecture, Japan. It has been a hub for pottery and stoneware production since the 12th century. Kiln innovations in the 1800s resulted in the earthenware that Tokoname is famous for. The thermodynamic property of iron-rich Tokoname clay is perfect for steeping Japan green teas, but also works well for white tea. Kyusu simply translates to teapot. Typically, they come in two different styles: yokode and ushirode. Most people associate kyusu with the yokode style, which is recognizable by its side-mounted handle. Ushirode look more like Chinese or European teapots, with the standard handle....

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