Forget Golden Milk with these hot days - Welcome Golden Lemonade!

What my matcha boost is in the morning is my Golden Milk in the evening, based on a recipe I got to know thanks to Sandra Bekkari. But with these hot days, I don't like it at all. As a turmeric and ginger fan, I was sure that this combination could also give a delicious lemonade. So until the temperatures get a little cooler again, this is my must-drink drink. And it also looks exotic too ... I would like to share the recipe with you. 

What do you need : 
  • 1 liter of cold water 
  • 5 cm organic fresh ginger root, peeled 
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric 
  • A pinch of black pepper 
  • 40 ml elderflower syrup (or honey, or agave syrup) 
  • 40 ml lemon or lime juice 
  • Mint or basil to taste
All together in the blender, in the fridge for an hour and a half, and ready to drink ice cold. Choose mint or basil, but both are not that tasty. 

A little more Story about Turmeric: 

Turmeric, also known as turmeric, is an herb that has been gaining popularity in recent years. It is primarily known for its anti-inflammatory qualities and is sometimes referred to as the "natural painkiller". It has not stolen its name, the beautiful yellow-orange-like colors, not only colors many drinks and dishes. It is also used as a natural color for clothing, among other things. 

It has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic and Unani medicine, among others. 

Turmeric is a relatively safe herb. Our body may have some turmeric a day, but in the event of excessive use, make sure that you do not experience any problems with your digestive system. The effect of turmeric can also be eliminated in combination with certain synthetic painkillers. 

If you drink turmeric for its healing properties, make sure you always take some black pepper with it, because turmeric is only absorbed quickly by the body in combination with piperine, an alkaloid. So your extra curry with black pepper, in addition to the turmeric, is definitely a good idea. 

PS: don't feel like working with the blender, make a coldbrew from our Golden Tea and you will come pretty close :-) 

Enjoy it!


Andre Ramalho

Tea fans and herbalist
About Mooncakes and Tea - Mid-Autumn Festival in China

We celebrate the start of autumn every year on September 21 (following the Celtic party Mabon). On the 15th , the day of the 8 thmonth of the Chinese Han calendar - specifically the day on which the full month falls - is celebrated in the China's Autumnal equinox. This day falls in our calendar between 8 September and 7 October. This year, this day falls today: 24 September. Next year it will be on September 13. In ancient China, during the Mid-Autumn Festival, people thanked nature, the ancestors and the Gods for the extensive harvest and gave the family gifts. It is a day where traditionally a lot of tea is drunk, where the family is together and there is extensive celebration. With a delicious, traditional mooncake and matching tea to hand, I would like to tell you more about this use. 

One of the legends that discuss the origin of the festival is the story of Chang'e and Hou Yi (see below). Another story is that of the Chinese rebels during the Yuan Dynasty (then Mongolia was in power in China). The Chinese rebels hid reports about revolution in mooncakes and gave them to the locals, under the guise of honoring the Mongolian Emperor. The revolution continued and China was "free." 

A Mooncake is very typical during the mid-Autumn festival. It is a pastry with a sweet filling. It looks very sturdy and beautiful and is often filled with thick lotus paste and 1 or 2 salted egg yolks, which represent the moon. It takes a very long time to prepare a mooncake. With rest times included, this can be up to 12 noon. It is one of the recipes that my book just did not make it, because it is also not so accessible. Such a mooncake is certainly not light. No matter how delicious they are, it is certainly not the first time that someone feels a little too satisfied after eating one (or more) mooncakes. The solution? Taking a tea of ​​course.

Some teas that fit perfectly with a traditional mooncake as described above are: Tie Guan Yin, Da Hong Pao and Shui Xian. You see it mainly Oolong tea ... Oolong is therefore a welcome tea during the fall. It is a tradition that should certainly be honored. Social gathering (a lot of Chinese who live all over the world also go home during the festival), show gratitude and pray for prosperity. Something we can do more often in this daily rat race. I am already going to share some mooncakes this week with my Theesommelier students, my dear colleagues and also with you!

Eating and sharing the mooncakes during the week in which the festival is celebrated stands for togetherness. In some parts of China, mooncakes are made during the night of the festival, the oldest of the family cuts the mooncakes and distributes them to the family. 

The Story of Hou Yi and Chang'e
Hou Yi was a very good archer. Because of his excellence, he received an "immortal elixir" from the Emperor for saving the planet. Upon returning home, Chang'e discovers the elixir and drinks it. She swells and literally flies to the Moon. According to legend, she would still live there today, longing for her husband. Every year, on the 15th , the day of the 8 th month (Mid Autumn Festival), when day and night are of equal length, they may one day be together with her husband, who became Sun God. Both the full moon and the sun burn with love. 
RECIPE: London Fog à la Jess

A modern, contemporary drink is a Latte. Usually with a strong espresso or the matcha variant. Perhaps less well-known with us, but a topper abroad is the London Fog, also called the Vanilla Tea Latte or a Vancouver Fog. It is a Latte, but this time not with an espresso, but with an Earl Gray as a seasoning. Traditionally, vanilla is also added. As an Earl Gray enthusiast, I couldn't help but fine-tune this, with a personal twist. I would like to share the recipe with you. 

The drink has its origin in Vancouver Canada, but it is not known exactly how and why it originated. There are several claims, such as a pregnant lady who was looking for a worthy alternative to a coffee or a student competition. Starbucks has made several variations. In any case, the drink does not look great, it is also delicious. 

Before sharing the recipe, I would first like to elaborate on the concept of latte. For those who don't know what a latte is: A cup of steamed milk, flavored, often with coffee or tea. For the perfect taste, whole milk is often used, but this can also be made perfectly with a vegetable variety. 

For a London fog, vanilla syrup is added to the latte, in this case with Earl Gray. Because vanilla is currently scarce, I prefer not to use sugar and I also wanted something different, so I chose to use a Latte spice blend from Mill & Mortar. I specifically chose the Turmeric Latte Spices.

What do you need to make 4 mugs of the London Fog à la Jess:
  • 1 tbsp Premium Earl Gray (Order it here ) 
  • 200 ml boiled water 
  • 600 ml whole milk 
  • 1 tsp and 4 pinches Mill & Mortar Turmeric Latte Spices (order here )

How do you prepare it? 
  • Put the strong Earl Gray (pour the tea with boiled water at 90 ° C and let it infuse for three to four minutes; 
  • Steam the milk and divide over the four mugs 
  • Add 1 tl Turmeric Latte Spices to the strong tea and stir good 
  • Divide the strong Earl Gray over the 4 mugs of steamed milk by pouring 50ml under the milk foam 
  • Finish with a pinch of Turmeric Latte Spices on the milk foam 
  • If desired, add some honey
Serve with a delicious piece of artisan speculaas

RECIPE: London Fog à la Jess

Can it also be healthier or plant-based? Of course, you can perfectly make this into a vegan version by using soy milk, unsweetened almond milk or another vegetable milk. I don't sweeten my London Fog, but possibly a hint of honey can make it a little sweeter. 

Be sure to try this with a rooibos Earl Gray (for a decaffeinated version), or another strong tea of ​​your choice. 
Kahwa Kashmiri, soon your favorite tea?

What could be better than starting the day with a delicious cup of green tea? Refreshing, gives you an energy boost, in short - everything you need to start the day. 

Yet (green) tea is so much more than a boost in the afternoon or a boost in the morning, many tea mixes and herbal mixes have been created for health-supporting purposes. India has countless Ayurvedic tea mixes. One of them is the Kahwa, also known as the Kashmiri tea. 

This blend of green tea and various herbs can make life a lot more comfortable if you have a cold or are in a very stressful period. 

This mix includes saffron, it gives an extra warming glow to your drink and drags us through barely cold winters. In addition to saffron and green tea leaves, the Kahwa tea also contains ginger, cinnamon cardamom, cloves and nuts, very often almonds - as is the case in our mix. If you like it, you can also add cherries, apple pieces, grapes, or other nuts. Traditionally this tea is prepared in a samovar (mainly known from Russian culture to make tea). 

The ingredients of our version are: Green tea, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, ginger, almond nuts , saffron.

Besides the fact that it is just a nice drink, what can Kahwa tea mean to us? 

1. Supports digestion and is powerful in the fight against stress
Heavily tabled? Do you suffer from constipation? A cup of Kahwa tea can help you as part of a healthy diet. 

Start your day with it, and give your metabolism a boost. Stress chicken (just like our tea sommelier Jess, by the way ;-))? Because of the rich amount of anti-oxidants and the L-Theanine in the green tea, this tea blend also relaxes you. And inserting a tea moment at a stressful moment can also help you to see everything more positively. 

2. Contributes to the strengthening of your immune system
We all know that green tea contains lots of antioxidants and that ginger also does its thing in the fight against the bacteria, but saffron is also a very good source of vitamin B12, which helps to optimize the immune system of our body to work. An anti-oxidant bomb so and another reason why it is the ideal autumn-winter tea. Yes, yes ... Winter is coming ... Do you feel a cold coming up or are you not completely in your own skin? This hot drink, with a strong dash of honey, can help you. The different ingredients will boost you and give you a feeling of comfort. 

3. Be your radiant self and give your energy a boost!
Anti-oxidants, you also say radiant skin. They help to keep the skin young and vital and reduce the risk of acne bumps.

The almonds that are used in the tea also ensure a natural glow from within. Ideal to compete with the harsh winter skins, it doesn't help… 

Need a boost? Kahwa to the rescue! Whether you drink this tea in the morning or right after lunch, this tea provides an instant boost, not only from your focus, but also from the soul. 

Preparation method: 
Take 1 very well-filled coffee spoon of kahwa tea for 1 mug of tea. Pour the tea with water at 80 ° C and let it infuse for 2 to 3 minutes. If the tea has cooled a little, you can add honey if you wish, according to your taste. 

The wellbeing trend of 2019, also in the workplace: Tea!

Good coffee has been invested in the workplace for some time. Hip coffee machines, with beans of course, lattes of all types. It is all available in many coffee corners of a company. It is high time that the wellbeing trend of 2019, which can give us both a boost, focus and tranquility, also deserves its place in the workplace: high-quality tea! That is why tea evangelista Jessica Van Humbeeck, known for her television program and the Belgian tea brand Tea with a Story, and writer of But First, launches Tea: Tea @ Work. Tea @ Work not only brings quality tea to the workplace, through workshops Jessica also wipes away all prejudices about tea. 

89% of the people who work for a company that focuses on well-being at work, will also identify the company as a pleasant workplace. Well-being at work is more than just sufficient training, correct cooperation or an eye for the mental resilience of employees. It is also what is drunk. Coffee is good, but not too much, nice water ... but what is often overlooked is: tea. 

The beneficial drink, which, wrongly, is portrayed as "oldies" or when you are sick, is on the rise. The homemade iced tea is indispensable from our summer terrace, and in the winter we already opt for a delicious chai latte. Tea is so much more than the most drunk drink in the world after water. It is indispensable, just like that cup of coffee, in the workplace. And this tea sommelier has completely understood: The English put it nicely: Tea solves everything . Do you need a boost? Tea can help you. Need some extra focus? The antioxidants in tea do that too. That awkward customer you just had on the phone? You rinse it with a cup of tea ...

When questioning employees in Flanders, more than half indicated that they would like to drink more tea, but that the supply at work often leaves something to be desired. They mainly want tea that gives them a boost or focus, or just that little bit of rest, when the stress picks up. In the same survey, it also emerged that 75% of the people surveyed did not dare to offer tea to their visitors at work, because only so-called "supermarket bags" were available. Of the respondents, who were already tea drinkers, 80% indicated to take their own tea to work. 

Has coffee been taken off? 
Of course not! There is nothing at all wrong with a cup of coffee to start your day. But as with everything, too much is not good either. Ideally, you only drink 2 bags of coffee a day, and opt for the rest for alternatives, of which tea is certainly a good one. Moreover, variety in what you drink during the day is definitely recommended. You activate your taste buds and you stay hydrated throughout the day.

Need that boost in the afternoon? Choose that for a green tea, or for an Earl Gray. These also contain caffeine and give you a long-lasting boost and focus, but without the coffee dip. There is an extra substance in tea, L-Theanine, that offers a counterweight to the negative sides of caffeine. 

Sorry, but tea at work, that's hassle ... 
Perhaps one of the most frequently heard excuses for not drinking tea. Even if you opt for pure, quality tea, it is certainly not a hassle to drink tea at work. You can perfectly make your own disposable tea bags from loose tea. And that is no extra burden on the environment, because you can opt for biodegradable bags. 

But there are also tea brands, such as we at Thee met een Verhaal, a Belgian tea brand, that also had our pure quality tea and infusions built into little pieces. Perfectly pre-dosed, and you literally taste the difference. These cases are supplied in handy tea pewter, which we refill. The refill package is also biodegradable. Our Start Tea @ Work concept also includes a workshop, so that we can offer a total package. This concept fits perfectly with the well-being at work story. Tea-drinking employees feel heard, and non-tea-drinking employees step out of their comfort zone and discover the power of the combination of tea-coffee-homemade iced tea - and infused water.

Tea ... isn't that bitter? Is that nice? 
If you don't treat tea with love (read: put it right), it can indeed give a bitter or bitter aftertaste. However, it takes less time to make tea than to get a freshly ground coffee in the coffee corner. A few small things in mind, which also mean a moment of peace while making tea, and you have the perfect cup and you can take it again. Not difficult at all, more so, one of the most frequently heard comments after the tastings of Thee with a Story is: 

 "We didn't know that drinking tea was so tasty & easy!"  

Of course you have to find the taste that suits you. "There is tea for everyone," laughs Jessica, "There is plenty of choice, because tea, fruit and herbal infusions have a more extensive palette of flavors than wine." Are you not a tea drinker? Have you ever tried a homemade iced tea that you spend literally 2 minutes on? And then I am not talking about the heavily sweetened variants that you find in the supermarket, but: homemade, with real tea leaves, herbs and / or fruit! Want to bet that you are tacking? Give it a try! 

Tea is on the rise and has, for several years in a row, been indicated as a trend in the beverage sector and that continues to rise. The demand for quality tea is therefore constantly increasing. The trend is also increasing at work. At a company in Flemish Brabant, with a hundred employees, tea consumption has increased exponentially since the Start Tea @ Work tasting by Tea with a Story. The management also notices that more people work quietly behind their computers and that the group spirit has received a positive boost. 

Tea @ Work is a concept elaborated by tea expert Jessica Van Humbeeck, inspirer of Thee with a Story and author of "But First, Tea." Jessica was recently named Promising Entrepreneur of Flemish Brabant 2018 by Markant, Unizo and Vlaio. She evangelises tea on EclipsTV, among other things, and has also been heard on MNM, JOE, Radio2, Van Gils & Gasten and in many other media with the aim of making people enjoy a pure and honest cup of tea, without synthetic additives. 

More info: www.teaatwork.eu and www.theemeteen story.eu 
Ready for the festive season, with ... adapted tea

Festival will be in just over a month. Our afternoon tea salon is already in the mood and we are already busy preparing the festive season here at home. Who makes what, when? This year, just like last year, I am committed to provide customized tea at my mum's home menu on Festival  Eve. We consciously drink little or no alcohol. And now let Thee be the new Wine! Not just any tea suits every dish, it is comparable to wine. If we keep it very simplistic, you can say that you can replace white wine with green tea, and red wine with black tea. However, as every good wine sommelier will agree, there is a bit more thinking to adapt. But let us help you. In this blog post a guide about which tea goes with common party dishes. Even nicer, you can find them all at Thee with a Story! Also vary with iced tea and hot tea during the menu and blow your guests off their socks.

Do you have a similar tea at home? For example, a Chinese green tea from last year instead of this year, or from another plantation? These will certainly work. And if you are looking for a tea that really fits almost everything: A Darjeeling Muscatel. Is not called the Beaujolais of the tea for nothing. Make a delicious tea cocktail to start the evening with, or drink it as a digestif. It's all possible just like that.

But first some starters:

A classic at Festival  is turkey. Can be combined with a lot. Think of a heavily oxidized Oolong, such as our Da Hong Pao, a delicious English Breakfast , to get both in  loose tea , and in our brand new sets , but also our All you need is love . The latter is a forest fruit blend of cranberries and elderberries, also delicious with game. If you want to think completely out of the box, go for the sweet sister of the Rooibos: Honeybush .

We will stay with the poultry for a while. Full, savory teas go well with chicken. Think of our Jasmine pearls , but also our Festival  tea , Earl Gray   or Lapsang Souchong .

Quiche and egg dishes
Eggs have a very specific taste and also require a strong taste of tea. Yet a delicious quiche is indispensable from the festive table or a festive afternoon tea (which you can also simply pick up at Festival  (evening) / New Year's Eve / New Year. Click here for more info). What do we serve? Our Irish Breakfast : a hearty tea with a soft heart.

Meat dishes
A good piece of roast beef or roast will continue to do well during the holidays. With meat we often serve red wine, and therefore also black tea. Earl Gray or English breakfast , or with a piece of roast a Chinese Golden Yunnan. A solid green tea like the  Dragon Well from Or Tea?  certainly can.

Lamb on the menu? Go crazy and go for a mint tea with this dish. Guaranteed success!

Fish and seafood
White wine often goes well with fish, so here we will look more at the light oolongs or the green tea. With a Tie Kuan Yin you always win. Moreover, you can then bring out Jess's story where she tells about her dark dragon. Also recommended is the Indian Sencha, exclusively in our range.

Prefer a fruit infusion? Then go for our Summer Breeze (mango pomegranate), our Pina Colada or our For Ladies Only (fig-basil). The latter can, served in a nice wine glass, still go perfectly for a rosé wine!

With this you can go further for the main courses, but what about the other courses?

Aperitif snacks
With apariteif snacks, I like to serve a white tea. Try the Mangostar from my book But First Tea. An ideal entry. But also a Japanese Gyokuro iced tea, ice cold, is an absolute must.

Save the best for last! Are you already well filled for dessert, then drink a bag of Puehr tea (for example: our Puehr Leaf ball) and that dessert can certainly be added.

Are we going for a chocolate brownie or a chocolate moeilleux? Then the lapsang souchong is a good idea. Rather for classics such as crème brulée or cheesecake? Then we can use our Chillax (cinnamon mint), rooibos, Ginger & Love (rooibos, ginger, lemongrass) or Jasmine pearls .

Do you prefer a Festival  stump of crème au beurre? Then choose a good, old Earl Gray !

Let the holidays come!
Ps: We usually don't drink anything with soup. But if you really want to serve a tea with that, then a delicious genmaicha is always a good idea. Heart warming, and complementary with a bowl of soup.
Forget Tinder, drink tea!

Very honestly, as a former translator - copywriter, I am not really in favor of the catchy headlines that you know in advance that the content will disappoint you. But very occasionally there is one that really catches the eye and the content of which is quite remarkable. According to the Irish news site The Irish Post , tea drinkers, or people who can make a decent cup of tea, turn out to be more attractive. Now that's interesting ...

The statement is: " A GOOD (read: well-made) cup of tea can make or break a relationship ". We agree that making a good cup of tea requires love for the product and a moment's attention. It is ideal as a moment for yourself, or just to share. I tell everything about that in my book But First, Tea . You cannot rush a cup of tea without turning it into a stress cup, or having to add sugar. Serving the perfect cup of tea for someone can make his or her day all the better . And not only the Irish Post and we agree ...

Plenty of Fish , an international dating app, conducted a survey of 2,500 Irish singles, to form a picture of the link between the popular drink, online dating and relationships. According to their research is more than 1/5 the of the singles important that can put the (future) partner good tea. Moreover, 69% of the participants felt it was important to know how his or her partner drinks the tea, and whether it includes sugar or milk.

Getting a "bad" cup of tea was also seen in the research as a true turnoff, on which a next date could become a no-go. 37% thought tea that was too weak had enough reason to do so, 17% got rid of too much sugar and 13% sent you away with over-infused tea. 10% said that milk in the tea is a no-go ...

That said, and your (future) partner is a tea drinker? Then you know what you have to do to prevent a broken heart ... Put yourself a delicious cup of quality tea, of course from Thee with a Story , and fine tune your tea-making skills ;-)

What is your favorite tea and how did you like it?