Tea The best Boba Tea Drinks use fresh, full tea leaves.

Tea Drinks for July

Cynthia Fazekas

The hottest (or coolest) trends for summer and tea are those that combine tea with tasty things like lemonade, soda/sparkling water, boba, juices, and various adult beverages. It all starts with great quality tea and a great infusion.

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Tea Tea is a little bit of white magic, perhaps.

Tea Trends and June Tea Menus

Cynthia Fazekas

The latest wave of trends in the tea world are spiritual/metaphysical in nature. The concept of holistically healing ties the ethereal and the sippable together. Spiritual healers of one sort or another are enhancing their offering with teas and herbal blends that support their clientele in the physical realm as they help work on their metaphysical growth.

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Tea Throat Therapy offers soothing comfort.

March Brings Cooties and Teas to Help!

Cynthia Fazekas

Despite what you might see online, there is still no cure for the common cold. That said, tea and tisanes may certainly help make their symptoms more tolerable. The mere act of sipping a hot beverage can ease congestion and soothe a scratchy throat. If you have to suffer, why not suffer with a hot cup of something lovely?

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Tea Turmeric Bliss for a Golden New Year Latte

New Year and Wellness Trends

Cynthia Fazekas

As we wiggle, wobble, and waddle from the holidays into the New Year, consumers will be seeking wellness help from their tea sellers. We have recently expanded our wellness options with two new teas: Minty Comfort and Speedy Recovery to help comfort during cold and flu season.

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Tea Spiced Apple Chai - so warm and cozy

Spicy Teas as Holiday Treats

Cynthia Fazekas

Festive tea options sparkle during holiday season as well as throughout the cold weather months. Be sure to include various chai blend options for hot tea, tea lattes, and boba if you serve it to warm those chilly winter souls.

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Tea High Mountain Tea Garden in Taiwan

Oolongs for October

Cynthia Fazekas

Sure, the rest of the world might be apple and pumpkin smitten right now, but tea aficionados are thinking about oolong teas. As the weather cools, and our bodies adapt to the season, a warm, toasty rock oolong or a crisp, lilting jade oolong sooth the soul and palate.

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Selling Tea and wellness go hand in hand.

Tea and Comfort

Cynthia Fazekas

Tea has a long history of being associated with wellness. One of the very first things the early tea sippers in ancient China noticed was the way drinking a warm cup of camellia sinensis made them feel, so this association is well entwined within the history of tea. In addition, herbal infusions, aka tisanes, are also universally seen as folk medicine, are also viewed colloquially as "tea." This presents a unique problem for passionate tea lovers and sellers who have fallen in love with true tea, camellia sinensis, for its wonderfully vast variety of tastes. The problem it presents is that people seek tea for potential health benefits versus how it tastes versus seeking it for the enjoyment value.

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Tea spicy Masala Chai is a great choice for you autumn menu

Plan Your Autumn Tea Menu

Cynthia Fazekas

While the August sun still burns brightly, each day is a little bit shorter as we approach autumn in the US. Now is the time to plan your autumn tea menu so you can purchase ahead and be ready when the hot tea seekers come calling.

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Tea Beautiful Botanicals!

Botanicals Are Booming

Cynthia Fazekas

Everything is coming up roses, as the old song says, but also hibiscus, apples, lemongrass, rose hips and a myriad of other botanical items that are trending intensely this year. Many consumers have incorporated some form of tea into their daily lives and it seems herbal infusions, aka tisanes are a staple.

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Selling A gift in the hand, is a sure sale!

Don't Miss (Making) The Sale!

Cynthia Fazekas

While being conservative is usually a sensible option, when it comes to stocking up for the holidays, it might not be so. Holiday shoppers tend to be low on time and high on impulse, so if you do not have what they seek when they are in your shop, you might miss out on the sale entirely.

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Tea Fill your tea menu with a balanced selection

Devising a Tea Menu

Cynthia Fazekas

We often get questions about how to select teas for your offering. Whether a café or a tea retailer, the approach can be similar. Decide how many teas you wish to offer. This can be based on space constraints for storage or display as well as how many your staffer can feasibly handle. Regardless of how many teas you decide to offer, you will want to represent a couple teas from each tea category to present a balanced assortment.

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Tea Meadow in a Cup

The World Needs Tea

Cynthia Fazekas

With 2017 off to a tumultuous start for so many people, tea is more essential than ever. Everyone can benefit from the clarity and solace found in a good cup of our favorite beverage.

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Selling Bye Bye Glorious Tea Wall

Tea Selling in a Post-Teavana World

Cynthia Fazekas

Tea industry veterans will clearly remember the tea landscape prior to Teavana populating malls throughout the US. It took a lot of preaching, teaching and convincing to get consumers to let go of their precious beany beverage and try something outside of a cup of coffee.

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Selling Stock (way) up on Holiday Favorites!

Bulk Up for the Busy Season!

Cynthia Fazekas

he holiday season is just around the corner! Now is the time to bulk up on stock and take advantage of newly arrived harvests. In addition to holiday treat teas, have plenty of customer favorites on hand to help them survive the most wonderful time of the year!

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Selling Apple and Spice Tea by the fire

Apples and Spice

Cynthia Fazekas

September is the season of apples and spice! While consumers transition from the lazy days of summer to back-to-school and work schedules, be sure to offer the perfect pick-me-up!

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Tea Boost summer sales with refreshing iced teas.

Summer Flavor Trends

Cynthia Fazekas

During the warm summer months, iced teas reign supreme. The diverse palate preferences of millennials lean toward tropical with a hint of the exotic. Here are our picks for summer 2016.

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Selling Staff should web well acquainted with all products.

Consistency: A Component of Success

Cynthia Fazekas

Often we talk about so many other factors of running a successful business but one of the most important can be overlooked. Consistency is essential to maintaining long-term relationships with your customers. Consistency applies to several aspects. Here are three.

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Tea Iced teas entice the thirsty shopper

April Musings - Iced Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

Spring is here in the northern hemisphere and thoughts are already turning to iced teas. It can’t hurt to plan your iced tea offering now so you can stay ahead of seasonal sold outs as new harvest time approaches.

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Selling Matcha prep class and tasting would be a fun experience.

Experience Based Retailing

Cynthia Fazekas

The recent news of Starbucks closing its Teavana tea bar concept locations, David’s Tea struggles and those of other retailers have independent tea shop owners a little leery. With the Internet’s ability to let a consumer purchase just about anything at a good price, what commodity will hold their interest and get them into a store?

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Tea Tea harvests heavily depend on favorable weather.

Spring Harvest Season Approaches

Cynthia Fazekas

March is exciting for tea people as the harvest season is right around the corner. For those of you who are new to the specialty tea industry, it’s important to know that the best teas are primarily harvested in the spring. Most tea companies will purchase in spring and early summer for the whole year.

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Marketing Simple pleasures are the most affordable

Tea – An Affordable Luxury

Cynthia Fazekas

Even with the economy pinching up a bit, tea still makes sense as an affordable luxury. With a tumultuous election year ahead in the US and weirdness all around the globe, tea offers comfort, energy and a respite from the stressors of modern life.

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Marketing Plan tea tastings for each consumer type. Green tea for health buffs!

National Hot Tea Month

Cynthia Fazekas

Here in the US, January is National Hot Tea Month, which provides a great opportunity to promote tea and all it has to offer. It coincides with consumers seeking wellness options this time of year; be prepared to educate the wellness seeking, detox oriented, health-minded consumer.

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Industry News Negotiating the tea landscape.

2016 Tea Landscape

Cynthia Fazekas

Gourmet tea is truly hitting its stride as more and more mainstream consumers are embracing it as part of their daily lifestyle. While drawn to tea for the reputed health benefits, they stay with it for the wealth of flavors and superior taste.

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Selling Tis the gift-y, chaotic, mad-dash season!

Holiday Season Tips

Cynthia Fazekas

Indications suggest that this will be a solid holiday season for tea sellers. Tea is trending, people are ready to do their holiday shopping, and tea awareness has never been better. If you’ve properly prepared for the season, you should be in good shape. Here are some thoughts/reminders for the depths of December

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Tea Beautiful tea field in Kagoshima, Japan

A Trip to Sencha Country

Cynthia Fazekas

As luck would have it, an opportunity arose to travel to Japan to visit tea farms and meet the farmers. During my time in the tea industry, my palate has certainly evolved with experience and exposure to many teas, eventually settling on fine, crisp, lingering sencha as a personal and professional favorite.

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Tea Adding matcha options is easy and trendy!

Riding the Matcha Wave

Cynthia Fazekas

The matcha tea trend is still going strong! Consumers enjoy the easy prep, rich taste, health benefits and versatility this tea has to offer. If you have not added matcha to you tea offering, you may wish to consider.

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Marketing Holiday Gift Hopefuls

Holiday Tea Gifting

Cynthia Fazekas

Nothing captures holiday season sales like ready-to-go gift sets. Shoppers get overwhelmed with the hustle bustle of the season and underestimate their time needs. Be their hero by making gift buying easy, which will pay off for you in added sales.

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Selling Time is a-ticking!

Order Early, Order Large

Cynthia Fazekas

The time is nigh for holiday season planning! The busiest part of the year is essentially here for tea retailers. Heaven knows things have picked up on the wholesale side, which means stores are ramping up for autumn and the holidays. If you haven’t already, please consider doing the same. You will thank yourself later.

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Tea Autumn beauty

Tea and Cider

Cynthia Fazekas

For your seasonal promos, consider a tea and cider infusion to draw in sippers and home steepers alike. Spiced tea blends pair very well with apple cider for autumnal enjoyment.

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Staff Training Tasting is similar to listening to music.

Learning to Taste

Cynthia Fazekas

Humans are all born with a natural ability to detect sensations on our palate that we call taste. As we grow we quickly learn to associate taste with liking or disliking of any particular sampled item. We don’t necessarily have to discern anything particular about the item as all we need to know is do we or do we not like it. Here are some simple ways to begin learning tea tasting.

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Tea New for fall! Honeybush Pumpkin Chai

Hot Tea Season

Cynthia Fazekas

While enjoying the last weeks of summer, turn your thoughts to autumn and prepare for hot tea season. Plan your autumn tea menu now and stock up early to save time and energy later.

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Tea Blending for wellness.

Devising Wellness Blends

Cynthia Fazekas

As tea grows in popularity the notion that tea is a medicine of sorts grows along with it. The traditional correlation between tea and good health is a strong one and leaves the every day consumer asking, “What will this tea do for me?”

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Marketing A flavor wheel can be handy for describing teas.

Writing Tea Descriptions

Cynthia Fazekas

Unless tea is being sniffed or slurped, it cannot speak for itself. Because of this, tea relies heavily on its loving human caretakers to relay its wonders to the world (and potential sippers.) Whether you are creating packaging, a menu or a website, the descriptions given to your teas can make or break their sales.

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Tea Prepare for peach cravings.

Feeling Peachy

Cynthia Fazekas

Every now and then we will notice a flavor trend blip on our radar while looking at other stats. Most recently, it appears that peach-flavored teas are unusually popular as we roll into summer. Sometimes national chains promoting a special item, such as beverage or confection, foster these trends.

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Tea Tea-themed Spirited Sippers

Tea Cocktails

Cynthia Fazekas

With the wonderful tea renaissance happening these days, it is not surprising that people want to enjoy their tea with a little something extra. And by something extra, I mean something with a little kick.

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Selling Lessons from the past.

Most Valued Lessons

Cynthia Fazekas

Recently, the founder of a newly formed tea start-up asked what I wished that I knew when starting in the tea world nearly sixteen years ago. What advice would I give myself if I could go back and do so?

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Tea Cherry Blossoms welcoming Spring

Finally Spring!

Cynthia Fazekas

At least the calendar says it’s spring. Some of those in the northern US may still feel a little frosty in the mornings but rest assured, winter is coming to a close. As the transition occurs, it is important to have a variety on your tea menu that reflects the changing season

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Industry News Spiffy new retail ready iced tea pouches for cold-brew!

Coming Up - World Tea Expo

Cynthia Fazekas

Many of you are planning to attend the World Tea Expo in sunny Long Beach, CA in early May. Adagio Teas will be exhibiting again, this time at booth number 839. Our new items this year include some retail ready iced tea pouches that make one quart of cold brewed tea (or hot, to be poured over ice.) Easy preparation enables the home iced tea drinker to conveniently offer fresh, healthy iced tea to their families and introduce them to the world of gourmet tea. No sweeteners are added, so the consumer has ultimate control over the calorie content. Easy peasy!

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Tea Many ways to achieve the perfect cup

Brewing Suggestions

Cynthia Fazekas

Tea companies that do their own branding include brewing information for each tea on their packages. The idea of doing so is to offer their suggestion of how to bring out the best in each tea while ensuring success for tea newbies. When using these parameters, individual brewing circumstances can be quite different than those of your beloved tea vendor, occasionally causing unfavorable results. This can cause frustration and dismissal of a very good tea as bad by the user, whether a consumer or another tea purveyor, café, etc.

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Selling Fall in line or blaze trails?

Conformity or Uniqueness

Cynthia Fazekas

In the tea world, we all get requests for teas carried by competitors, which presents a dilemma: to conform and carry what everyone else has or to offer unique selections. The average tea consumer is not especially tea savvy. They have discovered better tea options in recent years, discovering alternatives to fanning-and-dust-filled, lackluster tea bags. But unless they become overnight aficionados, they won’t understand that all tea companies don't carry the same teas.

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Tea Lovely lattes

Latte Season

Cynthia Fazekas

The smart tea purveyor is already thinking about spring, planning iced teas, menu changes and preparing a season ahead. While winter still holds us tightly, consider two tea trends: lattes and matcha. These are somewhat intertwined as matcha makes for a tasty latte.

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Tea Tea is my bourbon.

Blender Musings: Bourbontucky

Cynthia Fazekas

Inspiration can come from the oddest places. Recently, we watched a documentary about bourbon, which struck a chord within. With elegance and warmth, the film informed the viewer about what bourbon is, where it comes from and most importantly about the passion of its devotees and distillers.

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Industry News David's Tea is a chain retailer based in Canada

David’s Tea IPO?

Cynthia Fazekas

Reuters reports that there are indications that David’s Tea is preparing for their IPO. While their sources are anonymous, there is a strong possibility of accuracy. David’s Tea has been growing quickly and opening new stores rapidly in various high visibility markets to potentially sweeten the investor pool.

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Marketing Kermit sipping his stress away.

2014 T(ea)V Promos

Cynthia Fazekas

A few national advertising spots caught our eye this year. As tea consumption in the US has become more commonplace, perhaps promoting one’s brand as a source for the stuff makes the expense worthwhile.

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Selling What leaves are people buying near you?

Tea Market Snapshot

Cynthia Fazekas

The beginning of a new year is a good time to make changes to your tea offering while stock levels are lower and customer’s tastes are transitioning from indulgence to health consciousness. While you analyze bestsellers and sleeping, please recall that we now offer a Tea Market Snapshot that can be cater to your locality.

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Selling Tea...humbug?

Tea Scrooge

Cynthia Fazekas

A Tea Scrooge is that inscrutable person, who stubbornly insists that they do not like tea. We have all encountered such resistant people in our tea lives. As tea enthusiasts and tea sellers, we feel compelled to show them the light. Tea, as we know it, encompasses such variety that we wonder how can anyone simply dismiss it as a whole?

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Tea Story Time teas for young readers to enjoy.

Don't Forget the Wee Ones!

Cynthia Fazekas

Healthy habits start young! Be sure to have tea gift for children this holiday season. Tiny teapots and themed tea blends encourage small sippers to take time for tea and to eschew sugary beverages. Kids are persnickety so chose teas that are fruity flavored and maybe those with candy themes like chocolate and caramel. Most children find spiced teas to be an acquired taste, so perhaps stay clear of those. Parents will appreciate caffeine-free rooibos and fruit blends to keep the holiday bouncing to a minimum.

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Selling Cupping tea with customers

Benefits of Brick & Mortar

Cynthia Fazekas

Often brick and mortar teashop owners worry about the proliferation of online tea businesses as threat to their business. Online shopping certainly offers convenience but it cannot replace the human factor. Brick and mortar stores offer much that can’t be replicated online.

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Staff Training Battle ready!

Hunker Down for the Holidays

Cynthia Fazekas

The holidays are right around the corner! Hopefully, you already have a solid game plan and are well prepared for the season. If not, even late starters still have time to get a little holiday prep in before the busy season really takes off, but it would be best to rally now for a successful holiday season.

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Selling Gift selling made easy!

Tea Gifts Galore!

Cynthia Fazekas

Tea gifts are the best gifts, say we! Be sure you have plenty to offer to make your shop the most convenient for your tea gift customers. Making your own gift sets is certainly an option. Packaged teas paired with a handy teaware item such as an infuser mug, at an attractive price point are sure to be bestsellers.

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Serving Full, sexy leaves in those pyramids.

Teabags V. Loose

Cynthia Fazekas

A decade and a half or so ago this debate would have been no contest in the world of fine teas. Loose tea was the only way to get the best quality. How times have changed. With the advent of the pyramid style teabag, which offers glorious room for leaves to unfurl, the choice has become about convenience and no longer about quality.

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Tea Masala Chai - up close and personal.

Spiced Tea (Chai) Season

Cynthia Fazekas

While those of us in the tea industry know that chai simply means tea, to the mainstream US consumer it means a spiced tea, usually sweetened and most likely with milk or cream. There's no use in fighting it. Chai in this context has taken on a life of its own and pervades the market in many forms such as shelf stable concentrates and powdered chai mixes as well as the more traditional leaf and spice blend

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Tea What should be on your tea menu?

Tea Menu Review

Cynthia Fazekas

Ever wonder if your tea selection is doing its best for you? Are you missing trends and seasonal opportunities with your tea line? If you have answered yes to either of these questions, perhaps you would like a tea menu review.

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Tea Pumpkin Invasion!

Pumpkin or Die!

Cynthia Fazekas

The first crisp evenings that whisper of autumn’s arrival, have been cooling off summer's hot sunny days here in New England. With these whispers comes the soon to be ubiquitous pumpkin product onslaught. Pumpkin, pumpkin everywhere!

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Selling Enjoy summer's last hurrah.

End of Summer

Cynthia Fazekas

Back to school time and the fall kick off are just around the corner. August is a good time of year to have a sale to clear out slow movers and make room for fresh stock. Your tea vendors are likely to start getting new harvests in soon, and you don’t want older lots lingering when new crops are coming into port.

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Selling Fruity herbals are refreshing iced teas.

Summer Sizzle

Cynthia Fazekas

Engaging the customer during the summer has gotten easier over the years. What used to be tea’s off-season is now good business if you have an enticing iced tea offering. Premeasured pouches or simple instructions for using loose leaves enable the consumer to easily brew iced teas at a fraction of the cost of bottled beverages with ultimate control over added sweeteners.

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Tea Many sips down and many more to go!

Busy Buds!

Cynthia Fazekas

Taste buds, that is! We are roughly two thirds through our cupping of new harvest teas and waiting on the next round. As with every year, some samples came in spot on while others require additional searching for the perfect lot

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Tea Herbs!

Iced Tea Trends

Cynthia Fazekas

Trends this year will include the addition of fresh garden herbs to enhance the traditional iced tea glass. Keep fresh herbs on hand and use as a garnish or muddle in the bottom of a glass, then add iced and tea.

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Industry News Body & Soul gift set!

Looking to Long Beach

Cynthia Fazekas

At the end of this month we will be exhibiting at the World Tea Expo in its new venue at Long Beach, California. While we are certainly looking forward to being out of the hot stare of the Nevada sun and feeling the Pacific breezes on our faces, mostly we are looking forward to seeing you.

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Marketing Spring is coming! Robin said so!

March Musings, 2014

Cynthia Fazekas

March is finally here with its promise of transition. The weather can take any form on any day this time of year; so while we may be wishing for springtime teas, keep those spiced teas handy for the blustery days and occasion snow squalls.

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Industry News One popular item we'll exhibit in Chicago

Trade Shows, 2014

Cynthia Fazekas

We will be heading to Chicago soon for the 2014 International Home + Housewares Show at McCormick Place. (March 15-18, 2014) One of our favorite venues with one of our favorite shows! If you plan on attending, please note that we have a new booth location S343.

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Tea Tasting is the best part!

Tea Blending Tips, part I

Cynthia Fazekas

At some point as a tea business owner, you may wish to create something unique for your shop or recreate something you can no longer get from a vendor. Let us share some basics of tea blending to get you started.

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Selling Body & Soul wellness teas!

More Holiday Gift Options!

Cynthia Fazekas

Last month we introduced children’s themed teas in gift tins and now happily to report they are favorably reviewed and selling well. Also available is a new line of wellness blends in gift tins called Body & Soul. So far they are also selling well! The teas (technically tisanes) are comprised of an assortment of herbs intended to support various needs.

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Selling Make the most of sales swells

Wave Watching

Cynthia Fazekas

In a few short weeks Thanksgiving and Hanukkah will be here! These two holidays overlap this year with Hanukkah a month ahead of Christmas, which may result in an unusual flow to the gift buying tide.

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Industry News These buds are reaching new heights!

Teavana/Starbucks Open New NYC Shop

Cynthia Fazekas

The big recent news in the tea world is that Teavana has opened its first concept store since being acquired by coffee industry giant Starbucks. While the move was certainly expected, it has sent ripples through the specialty tea industry as speculation circulates on what it affects it will have on independent retailers.

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Tea Caffeine-free tea sets for kids!

Timely Tea Gift Expansion

Cynthia Fazekas

Hear ye, hear ye! Just in time for the gift-giving season, Adagio Teas is adding to our tea gift sets. Princesses, princes, astronauts, monsters and wee paleontologists can all now enjoy teatime. Three new sets each containing three new themed tea blends packaged in full-leaf pyramid teabags within playfully designed tea tins. All are caffeine-free and blended with young taste buds in mind.

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Tea New! White Chai

Spicetober!

Cynthia Fazekas

October is one of the very best months of the year. The weather tends to be forgiving, the deciduous trees turn an array of lovely colors and our palates are ready for some spice. Fortunately, tea and spices are an ancient and favorable combination and lend themselves well to this colorful time of year.

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Staff Training Time to prepare!

Pre-Holiday Season

Cynthia Fazekas

As the holidays approach many of you are planning events, promos and gift offerings. As business starts to increase, so will the demands on your time and energy. October is likely the last chance you really have to get organized and trouble shoot your operations.

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Marketing Limited time yumminess!

Cider Donuts and Marketing: LTOs

Cynthia Fazekas

Every September the denizens our town eagerly await the annual reopening of the local cider mill. Only open from September through the holiday season, the cider mill is a popular stop for locals and tourists alike who come to partake in pick-your-own apples and of course, delicious cider.

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Tea Chorange, baby!

Coming Soon - Pu'erh Blends

Cynthia Fazekas

Along with the annual arrival of fresh teas from origin, this fall we will be adding four new blends. Pu’erh tea is an aged tea where the leaves go through a natural fermentation process. The result is smooth and refreshing with reputed health benefits touted by popular health pundits.

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Marketing Every picture tells a (leafy) story.

Access to Product Images

Cynthia Fazekas

To better support our wholesale clients, we are happy to introduce a new feature to help make selling our teas even easier. Product images of purchased items will be automatically added to a client’s account. The images can then be used for their own marketing purposes such as websites, email promos or tea menus.

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Marketing Lovely and functional

Spiffy New Website Design

Cynthia Fazekas

Those readers who also are wholesale client of ours, may have noticed a new look when logging into our wholesale website. Happy to say that after a long wait, our wholesale clients can now enjoy the same features and beautiful functionality of our retail site users.

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Staff Training Look for substance behind the smile.

Hiring Help

Cynthia Fazekas

When chatting with tea business folks, the topic often turns to hiring help. Finding the right personalities for a staff that is cohesive and productive can be more challenging than hiring a few nice folks.

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Tea Iced deliciousness!

Summer is Here

Cynthia Fazekas

As we slide in July and the hot summer months here in the US, everyone’s iced tea plan should be in full effect to convert those non-tea holdouts into tea enthusiasts.

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Industry News WTE is June 7-9 in Las Vegas!

June = World Tea Expo

Cynthia Fazekas

May went by in the blink of an eye and June is already upon us. With it comes the World Tea Expo, which is June 7-9th in sunny Las Vegas. Many of you are attending this year and I’m looking forward to seeing all tea-friends and clients who will visit our booth.

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Tea If we could all sleep like a pup...

Sweet Dreams

Cynthia Fazekas

Here at Adagio Teas we often get asked for teas with certain functions, such as those to help one sleep. Our TeaSmart readers may receive similar inquiries and so we thought it might be helpful to share how to advise your clients with some herbal blends as well a little sleep advice

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Marketing What best describes your tea service?

TeaMap Notes - The Overview Section

Cynthia Fazekas

As most of our TeaSmart readers know, TeaMap is an online listing of tearooms. It is a free service provided by Adagio Teas for both tearoom owners and tearoom visitors to help build the growing US tea industry.The tearoom owner can manage their listing on TeaMap by adding pictures, events, hours and a description of their business. The description is referred to as the ‘overview’ in the TeaMap admin and should contain a detailed description to complete the listing.

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Tea Ah, strawberries!

May is National Strawberry Month!

Cynthia Fazekas

National Strawberry Month sounds delicious! Here in New England we really embrace the seasons and the tasty bounty that they bring. Toward the end of May, our local farmers offer Pick Your Own Strawberries and nearby towns have festivals celebrating these darling little fruits.

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Staff Training Communicate for success!

Internal Communications

Cynthia Fazekas

very thriving team-like entity, be it a family, school or business, requires good communication. Your business probably has many parts to run efficiently; and so many of these parts are human. Humans require information to operate optimally and the only way to disseminate information is communication.

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Tea Sweet Summer Roses

Roses in April

Cynthia Fazekas

April is finally here and for those of us coming to the end of our North American winter, it arrives not a moment too soon. And while still chilly, many of our clients are already planning their iced teas for the summer. We are thinking of summer as well. Maybe it was the many shovelfuls of snow we moved after Blizzard Nemo or maybe it was the long windy night Superstorm Sandy raged through the northeast, but we are looking especially forward to warm sunny days.

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Selling Popular Gifts for Mom!

Mother's Day Planning

Cynthia Fazekas

Moms and tea are inextricably connected in my mind. My mother is and has always been a tea drinker. Growing up, tea was invariably available in our house to comfort, revive or console when needed, much like a mom in its own way. Giving any mother teatime is an act of care and completes a perfect comfort-giving cycle.

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Tea This tropical beauty loves to chill.

March Melange

Cynthia Fazekas

March 2013 has much to offer for events and occasions. Passover, Easter the official beginning of spring as well as St Patrick’s Day festivities. Keep the decorations handy for quick changes and have holiday tea promotions ready to go! Now although the snow is stilling falling here in Connecticut, let us talk about ice tea.

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Marketing Resolution breakers!

February Fun!

Cynthia Fazekas

Your poor customers likely made resolutions early in January only to have them undermined by sweet, innocent February - the month that comes in quietly and entices everyone to indulge in chocolates and pink candy hearts

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Selling Greetings! We offer you leaves of joy.

First Contact

Cynthia Fazekas

When we first encounter a customer looking for tea or tea time, our initial approach is quite important. Whether coaching new staff members or just for our selves, having some suggestions, reminders and what seems to work for others helps greatly in improving this valuable interaction.

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Tea Soul soothing and delicious!

Terrific Tisanes

Cynthia Fazekas

Fruit tisanes are herbal blends comprised primarily of dried fruit and usually have the addition of some herbs such as rose hips and hibiscus. Very popular in Europe they have developed a faithful following in the US. The infusions they yield are naturally sweet and if they contain hibiscus, refreshingly tangy.

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Selling Brrr! Tea makes the perfect anti-freeze.

Wintertime is Tea Time

Cynthia Fazekas

With the holiday season in the rear view mirror, we move boldly (mostly) into a bright and shiny new year. For most retailers this is a time of being less busy with the exception of gift returns and gift card redemption.

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Selling Tea Blends for Men

Plan Ahead for Valentine's Day

Cynthia Fazekas

While most of us are just catching our breath from the frenzied holiday season (many of you reported record breaking results -congrats!), it is already time to think about the next retail-gift-event bonanza. Yes, Valentine’s Day is coming soon and it is best to plan and purchase now, than to scramble when February 1st pops up on the calendar.

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Selling What makes a shopper shop?

The Perception of Value

Cynthia Fazekas

While gift shopping this holiday season, I found myself in a local JC Penney partially for gift shopping and partially out of curiosity. There has been much in the news about JC Penney’s change in leadership in the past year as well as the attempt transition their image and business style.

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Selling Ho Ho Ho! Hope you're ready to go!

Season's Greetings!

Cynthia Fazekas

Can you believe it is already December? We are two thirds through Q4 and sliding into the chunkiest, most hectic part of the year. Although, those of you in the northeastern US know that November was unusually challenging post Hurricane Sandy.

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Selling A universe of leafy goodness in a basket.

Guiding the Tea Noob

Cynthia Fazekas

With corporate America taking notice of specialty tea and strong support from influential celebrities like a certain daytime TV doctor, we are likely to see an influx of tea novices (noobs, in geek speak.

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Selling Tea completes a welcoming holiday table.

Tea and Entertaining

Cynthia Fazekas

The holiday season means entertaining - possibly more so than any other time of the year. Encouraging customers to incorporate tea into their holiday settings builds and shares a warm, relaxing, tea-centric lifestyle. Inviting blends and charismatic teaware set the stage for adding tea to a holiday table. Create vignettes in your shop to show your customer an appealing display they can easily envision in their home.

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Selling Great Gifts- Tasty Teas!

World Tea East Recap - Philly 2012

Cynthia Fazekas

Last month kicked off with a blast of energy from World Tea East. The show was in Philly for its second year at the very beginning of October. Attendees came to our booth almost steadily for the first day and even with some frequency on the second day. It was great fun as usual to show off our teas, wares and gift items as well as seeing and meeting east coast tea folk.

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Selling Plan ahead or Q4 could get scary!

Leaves are Falling - Q4 is Calling!

Cynthia Fazekas

Leaves are falling, pumpkins are aglow and evenings are chilly, which can only mean it is October- and officially fourth quarter. Now is the time to ensure bright holiday successes by drawing in customers who seek warming refreshments and getting them to think TEA for holiday gift giving.

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Selling Irresistible sans health benefits.

Twinkies and Tea

Cynthia Fazekas

There’s absolutely no good reason to eat a Twinkie. (Hang with me here Hostess fans.) The iconic sugary, crème filled sponge cake has virtually no nutritional value. There is nothing in it that is going to make you thinner, prettier, anti-oxidize you or make you live longer.

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Tea Apple-y goodness!

Welcome Autumn!

Cynthia Fazekas

Cool autumn air breezes in to refresh everything, while deciduous trees make the world grandly colorful. For those of us in the tea world, it’s prime tea time. Vacations are over, everyone returns to their normal flow of life, and hot beverages keep the machine in motion.

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Industry News New tumbler for tea on the go!

World Tea East - 2012

Cynthia Fazekas

Back for its second year, World Tea East is coming to Philadelphia on October 2-3 to bring east coast tea industry professionals together. Happy to say that Adagio Teas will be exhibiting again, with yours truly waiting to meet you at booth 201

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Marketing Now just add tea!

August 2012- Keeping it Fun!

Cynthia Fazekas

While August may not have any major holidays, it resonates with most as the end of summer – the season is a holiday in itself! A few short weeks and it will be time for back to school and dreaded daily grind. As the summer winds down, iced teas are still on tap and popular as ever. The increase in tea consumption continues to grow as tea edges its way into the mainstream.

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Tea Fuzzy, peach tea memories.

Peaches and Dreams

Cynthia Fazekas

Peaches! Whether baked with cinnamon in a cobbler or simply sliced fresh (and quickly devoured), peaches are a great summer treat. Generally in season from May to September, this year’s unusually warm weather has pushed many crops forward. August may be your last chance to enjoy ripe peaches fresh from the orchard.

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Tea My plans for July + Iced Tea

July 2012 - Popular Iced Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

July is the perfect summer month in the northern hemisphere, and is all about beaches, picnics, vacations and cold beverages. In years past, July would slow dramatically for tea people and all but come to a standstill. These days the culture seems to be changing and more and more iced tea is becoming the refreshment of choice.

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Industry News Four crucibles for multiple brewing

The Steam Punk

Cynthia Fazekas

On the way to the World Tea Expo, a side mission was on my itinerary. This mission was to check out a new commercial coffee brewer which made its maiden appearance at the recent SCAA show in Portland, OR. The darling of the show, this intriguing machine drew daily crowds as people watched the baristas brewing coffee in its four chambers.

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Selling Coming soon!

May 2012 - Iced Tea Strategy

Cynthia Fazekas

Iced Tea season might be here a little ahead of schedule this year, but May is always a perfectly good month to get started. With specialty tea becoming more popular, your iced tea offering should be in great demand. Amazingly diverse and wonderfully refreshing, iced tea can both quench the thirst and convert the masses to the wonders of full-leaf tea.

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Marketing April brings such lovely things!

Happy April 2012!

Cynthia Fazekas

April is a lovely month, notorious for showers and flowers here in the Northeast though this year head start on the latter! Easter and Passover fall early in the month while Earth Day and Arbor Day (Hug a Tree!) are in the second half. It is also National Autism Awareness Month and National Poetry Month. It seems April is full of fun and meaningful themes for your tea business!

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Selling Tiny, beautiful crystals can add up to trouble!

The Sweetest Enemy

Cynthia Fazekas

Just last night, a national news show aired a segment about researchers and doctors announcing that sugar is toxic. The news of course, is not new to those of us in the tea industry. Many of us were drawn to tea because we were looking to avoid sugary beverages and found tea to have fabulous flavor and soothing effects. We got lucky early and discovered that a well-brewed cup of tea needs no enhancement and have benefited since.

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Tea Keeping the shopper bees happy!

Sunlit Blooms!

Cynthia Fazekas

Blossoms blooming, bees are buzzing and teas are brewing. This year we are happy to present a lovely collection of three springtime blends in decorative tins for Mother's Day (or any of your vernal gift giving occasions) packaged in a handsome gift box.

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Tea Oolongs pair well with flowers and snow squalls

March Transitions - 2012

Cynthia Fazekas

March: The third month of the year and the end of the first quarter. It also signifies a transition in the northern hemisphere to spring and the vernal equinox. For tea sellers it can denote a transition in tea offering.

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Marketing Where will the leaves take us?

The Adventure Continues

Cynthia Fazekas

Five years ago my tea journey took a turn. After many years with the now defunct SpecialTeas and in need of a change, I'd considered leaving tea altogether with the notion of seeking new challenges. A mutual friend and client was kind enough to connect me to Adagio Teas prior to making that somewhat hasty exit from the world of tea.

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Industry News Cheers to the New Year!

The Coming Year: 2012

Cynthia Fazekas

We made it through another 365 days on our spinning planet and are ready to welcome the next. The recent holiday season was hard to predict and delivered a sort of roller coaster ride for many. Hopefully all our readers landed on the upside and had a terrific season.

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Tea Dragonwell to scare away the winter blues!

January Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

Indulge in too many sugarplums? We all do it this time of year and then face January with regret. What can we offer the customer wanting to lighten up and re-point their dietary intake? What flavors are popular with the post-holiday side of winter?

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Tea The dragonfly symbolizes good fortune, new beginning and romance.

New! Cast Iron Teapots

Cynthia Fazekas

It is always great to receive new products, but we are especially pleased to announce the addition of cast iron teapots to our wholesale offering. Long used in Japan and revered for their elegance, durability and heat retention, cast iron teapots have become a popular choice for tea enthusiasts in the western parts of the globe.

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Marketing January will be here faster than a speeding snow ball!

The January Plan - Thinking Ahead

Cynthia Fazekas

While everyone's focus right now is on the season at hand, the December holidays, the smart tea purveyor should have or should be thinking about their January plan. While most retailers see a big slow down in January, those who sell hot beverages should not feel quite the same dip in activity.

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Selling Irresistibly festive and tasty!

Here It Comes - Holiday Season 2011!

Cynthia Fazekas

In October many of our tea friends mentioned they were just trying to get their minds around the holiday season. It seems to be upon us quickly this year and there will be a scramble for gifty things. The good news, like every year, is that tea is a great gift: It's useful, guilt-free, generally healthy and oh-so-affordable. The tricky part is the packaging.

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Selling Even our pumpkins were chilly!

Thankgiving 2011

Cynthia Fazekas

Nothing makes a person appreciate the little things like difficult times. Whether the difficulties are personal or more visceral like losing heat and power during a storm, sometimes circumstances can makes us ponder what we really need in life.

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Selling Failure to "bob and weave."

Rolling With The Punches

Cynthia Fazekas

Sometimes, for all your planning and persistence, things just go awry. Unforeseen obstacles present themselves at the worst possible times and cause ripples that seemingly affect everything in their path. When this happens it is easy to focus on problems. They certainly demand attention and require it for correction but too many times business folks will fixate on the negative.

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Industry News Nifty new holiday stuff!

World Tea East - Philly Recap

Cynthia Fazekas

No one really knew what to expect from World Tea East that was held in Philadelphia early September, but many of us were delightfully surprised. Despite foul weather causing floods and travel delays en route to the show, it certainly seemed well attended and as effective as the Las Vegas show.

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Staff Training Knowledge is Power!

Busy Season Training Tips

Cynthia Fazekas

One of the most important things you can do as your busy season approaches, is staff training and education. Most businesses add new staffers for the busy holiday season and will need to focus on various aspects of training the new hires as well as getting seasoned staffers to brush up and be ready for what lies ahead.

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Selling These beauties can't speak for themselves.

Pushing Leaf

Cynthia Fazekas

While chatting with a tea friend last week, who is also in the business of tea, we happened upon the topic of sales skills. When one thinks about selling, it is very easy to conjure up the caricature of a sleazy, do-anything-for-the-sale, kind of a used car guy. If this is what your teashop staff thinks about selling, you might have to deprogram them a bit.

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Tea Hope your autumn tea is 'gourd-geous.'

Finally Fall!

Cynthia Fazekas

Our local meteorologist, who has been busy as a bee with Hurricane Irene, tweeted this morning that September 1 is the meteorological beginning of fall. For tearooms, tea purveyors and moms, autumn brings relief. For us teafolks, cooler weather and back to school signal the end of summer and the beginning of increased tea enjoyment.

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Industry News Comfort foods area a hot commodity.

Eye - Pea - Oh!

Cynthia Fazekas

In the past month or so since the World Tea Expo, I've had the opportunity to chat with many of our clients and tea friends about life, the expo, and the tea industry in general. One recurring theme kept popping up in conversation - the Teavana IPO.

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Industry News Finding a tea path through niche teas

Finding A Niche

Cynthia Fazekas

The Specialty Tea industry is ever growing and evolving. There is a typical ebb and flow of businesses that come and go. The same is usually true for trends, but over the past year or two what we seem to be seeing in the tea biz, is specialization in a specialty market. That is to say, some new tea businesses are developing niche products.

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Tea Planning tea at the beach next week for me!

Late Summer Planning

Cynthia Fazekas

August is here and so we have reached late summer. As the season starts to wind down remember to squeeze in some beach time, lake time, picnic time and fall planning time. The latter does not sound nearly as fun as the others, but you will be thanking yourself once the fall hits and things get back to their hectic pace.

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Selling Hot sun + cold tea = happy!

Dog Days Cometh

Cynthia Fazekas

Here in the Northern Hemisphere, July brings the famous sultry weather associated with the "Dog Days of Summer." This time of year is named for Sirius the Dog Star and the ancient beliefs associated with its position in the heavens above. July days are typically hot and long, created a desire for cold beverages and lots of them.

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Industry News Mmmm...tea intensive

World Tea Expo Recap 2011

Cynthia Fazekas

Last week's World Tea Expo went by so very quickly. The tea intensive show was jam-packed with activity and seemed to speed by. Our booth this year had a stronger presentation of our loose tea offering and this certainly seemed to attract more booth visitors.

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Tea Icy Tea Goodness!

June is Iced Tea Month!

Cynthia Fazekas

Don't forget (how could we?) that June is National Iced Tea Month! An American favorite, iced tea still makes up about 85% of all tea consumed in the US, so make sure you have some delicious offerings. A great substitute for sugary sodas and juices, iced tea is refreshing and needs little to no sweetening if made properly.

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Marketing Teamap users seek tea events in their area.

Teamap Promotions

Cynthia Fazekas

One of the most popular features Teamap has to offer is the "Promote Your Tearoom" service. By using this function, tearoom owners can enter a promotional email that will be sent by the Teamap administrators to Teamap users who are registered to receive info in that Tearoom's locality.

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Industry News Sinensis City

See You in Las Vegas!

Cynthia Fazekas

We are gearing up and finalizing details for the upcoming World Tea Expo at the end of this month, where we will turn Sin City into (Camellia) SINensis City. (hehe!) Hopefully, all our tea-friends will be attending this exciting three-day event.

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Tea Breathtaking views of Anxi

China Trip

Cynthia Fazekas

Last month, as many of you know, I went on a tea trip to China with two colleagues for Adagio Teas. Suzette Hammond was kind enough to write about our trip as we went along, but I'd also like to share a few personal impressions of the trip.

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Selling We must be friendly, informative guides on the tea-path.

Peddling Leaves

Cynthia Fazekas

As many of you know, selling tea is not for the faint of heart. With so little inherent tea culture in the US and the proliferation of coffee in the last century, getting into tea retailing is not even remotely a get rich quick endeavor.

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Tea Dragonwell Farmer Yao Fu Yun in Hangzhou, China

April Tea Travel

Cynthia Fazekas

Spring has finally sprung and all things in nature are sprouting - flowers, grasses and our favorite sprout - tealeaves! Happy and excited (practically delirious) to announce that this month I will get the honor of witnessing these sprouts and their transformation into the various kind of tea on a trip to China!

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Marketing Ye Olde Royal Wedding Cake

April Events - Royal Wedding!

Cynthia Fazekas

Among the usual April occasions such as National Poetry Month, Earth Day, Arbor Day, and Conch Republic Day in Key West, this year April will boast the added celebration of a royal wedding. Teamap users are already adding events to celebrate the special occasion.

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Marketing Coming soon to a meadow near you!

March Tea Themes

Cynthia Fazekas

Per Wikipedia, March is the third month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar and one of the seven months that are 31 days long. It is typically a month of wild weather transitions, as winter officially leaves on March 20th and spring (finally) arrives.

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Tea Dreamy lavender.

Lemon Clouds and Lavender Fields

Cynthia Fazekas

We've been slowing adding requested blends to our selection over the past few months and February was no exception. In case you missed the direct email we sent mid-month we are happy to introduce a lemon-cream rooibos blend we lovingly call Rooibos Lemon Cloud.

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Tea Hoping for an early harvest.

For the Leaf of It

Cynthia Fazekas

In years past, March has given the first whispers of the tea harvest season. Sometimes, when the weather is right and conditions are prefect, you might even see a first flush Darjeeling harvest oh so early. If we get so lucky this year, it is always a treat to have the first leaves of spring in our cups. Be sure to keep a close watch on your tea vendors, if you are interested in early crops.

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Tea A Winning Team

Be My Valentine (Tea)

Cynthia Fazekas

Without Valentine's Day what would frosty February really have going for it? Boasting only a couple of presidential birthdays and a questionable marmot weather forecaster, February would be a winter wasteland and 28 (or 29) days of dismal mid-winter doldrums for anyone living in the colder regions.

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Tea Can tea take us here?

Tropical Getaway

Cynthia Fazekas

Recently we had he pleasure of adding green rooibos to our tea offering. I'm happy to say they could not have come at a better time. Some of our wholesale customers needed to replace a few green rooibos blends from a vendor who is no longer in business but also because of this darned winter.

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Marketing Cheers to a happy, healthy 2011!

Happy New Year 2011

Cynthia Fazekas

Welcome to a new year with new hopes, dreams and all the promise of the future. While I don't believe in New Year resolutions (because I think we should revise as we go and resolve to make change as necessary- blah, blah, blah), I do think taking stock of the successes and missed marks of the past year can provide valuable information for the coming year. Most importantly, setting reasonable goals and a strategy of how to achieve them.

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Tea Precious leafy good stuff.

Tea Taster's Lament

Cynthia Fazekas

The past couple of years have certainly been a challenge for most tea retailers and 2010 was no exception. While tea culture in the US is certainly on the upswing and many tea centric businesses saw a delightful bounce back in interest, traffic flow and sales, this year still found a way to kick us in the shins - or in the teacup, as it were...

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Selling Funky new teas pique curiosiTEA

The Old v. The New

Cynthia Fazekas

Every year the holiday season has inherent challenges such as what to offer, how much of it to buy and what events to plan. There is also always the conflict of whether to offer the traditional versus what is novel. Should you go with the tried and true or be daring and take risks with the new and untested?

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Tea Merrymint tea latte!

Holiday Spice!

Cynthia Fazekas

In case you are looking for some holiday teas to add merriment to your tea offering for the season, we would like to suggest the following time tested deliciousness...

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Marketing Maximize your holiday exposure

Holiday Traffic

Cynthia Fazekas

You might have visions of sugarplums dancing in your head but you should be strategizing. No other time of year will so many people come through your door. The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to sow some seeds of information and build your client base.

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Marketing Transitions can be beautiful

Transitions

Cynthia Fazekas

Sometimes in any business it becomes necessary to transition from old faithful products to new ones. This can be stressful and even traumatic for you and your customers when dealing with a comfort food such as tea.

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Selling Warm and inviting...

Ambiance

Cynthia Fazekas

With the holidays fast approaching, entertaining at home is on everyone’s minds. Guests will be coming, meals are to be prepared and tables to be set. Holiday decor can mean so much when gathering with loved ones so it is important to set a festive tone

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Selling Tick tick tick...

It's GO Time!

Cynthia Fazekas

Are you wondering where the year went? Seems like moments ago we were celebrating 2010 as a brand new year and making plans and goals for the months to come when - lo and behold we are all knee deep in Q4 poised to do the most business of the year.

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Marketing Apricot Green or Thingamawhosit Blend?

What's In a Name?

Cynthia Fazekas

The famous Shakespeare quote is, "What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would still smell as sweet." This may be true but when it comes to tea names, capturing the essence of the blend and adding a touch of romance is helpful to the customer and good marketing.

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Marketing Autumn Pretties

October Fun

Cynthia Fazekas

October is one of my favorite months - colorful trees, refreshing cooler temperatures and all the fun of autumnal festivities. A lot of people feel this way so it makes sense to incorporate the seasonal info your business. Craving tastes of autumn and attracted to seasonal decorations make sure customers will be drawn to you. It is a good time to advertise seasonal menus, special autumn events and partake in some local festivals to get the word out about your business.

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Tea Mocha Nut Mate - yum!

Mate Maddess!

Cynthia Fazekas

Yerba Mate has long been a social beverage in South American countries such as Argentina and Brazil. It is customary to enjoy a gourd-full of brewed mate and sip through a metal straw while enjoying the drink and the company of friends and companions.

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Marketing Tea season cometh-plan ahead!

Season of the Leaf

Cynthia Fazekas

With most of summer in the rear view mirror, it is time to keep a keen eye on the road before us. Some of the more savvy tea businesses have already begun their planning and purchasing of teas and wares for the fall and holiday seasons.

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Tea Sweet Potato goodness - makes a great tea!

Cinnamon, Spice and Everything Autumn

Cynthia Fazekas

September signals our "prepare for autumn" response and thus, many tea businesses are already seeking suggestions for fall teas. Nothing quite embraces the season like a delightful array of teas to brew. Make sure you have the flavors well represented by the following blends.

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Staff Training Juggling too much?

Embracing Growth

Cynthia Fazekas

If you have been in the tea business for a few years and have survived the last couple, you have likely vaulted over some pretty high hurdles. Congratulations! Many small businesses never make it to where you are - many never make it out of the first year, sadly.

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Serving Fruit Medley/Fruit Sangria divine fruity goodness!

Late Summer Sangria

Cynthia Fazekas

August is our last chance to enjoy what summer has to offer as the season seemingly spirals quickly into back-to-school and spills us headlong in to fall. As your customers come in still feeling the golden glow of late summer, offer them refreshment in the form of delicious caffeine-free fruit blends.

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Industry News Dumping old teabags for quality!

Trade Shows - Fast and Furious

Cynthia Fazekas

June has gone by fast and furiously for us at Adagio Teas with so many recent trade shows. As always it was great to get out and meet folks! For those that we had the pleasure of seeing, hope you enjoyed the shows as much as we did and think you will agree that every show was high energy, bustling with activity and really a great sign that the economic squeeze is relinquishing its boa constrictor-like grasp.

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Industry News Tea Promised Land

Tea Promised Land

Cynthia Fazekas

The dream I had eleven years ago, first starting out in the fine tea world as an enthusiast turned tea biz manager, was that a tea drinker could walk into almost any establishment and find great tea has been coming closer and closer to fruition. This dream seems to be shared by many in the tea industry and is perhaps what unites us.

... read more
Tea Adagio's Wild Strawberry Herbal Tea

Strawberry Season!

Cynthia Fazekas

June kicks off the season of summer berry-liciousness! Berries are one of nature's gifts of wonder. Not only do they offer antioxidants galore but more importantly - fresh, ripe, in-season berries really deliver fabulous flavor. As tea people, we are incredibly spoiled - strawberry teas are available all year to delight our palates. Even so, every June thoughts turn to strawberry teas with more intensity.

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Marketing Jester attire optional, but oh so fun!

April's Fools

Cynthia Fazekas

For all the rain much of the country has had in March, we certainly hope to be spared April's showers this year. Although, we will gladly take May flowers as early as possible, pretty please!

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Staff Training Customers are a li'l cranky lately.

Lessons from TeaMap

Cynthia Fazekas

We've been gleaning insights from TeaMap reviews. The current customer weather seems to be "stormy" with a chance of complaints and grumpiness. Bring your umbrella, read on and March will be in like a lion and with some TLC out like a lamb.

... read more
Tea Green tea should not = bad medicine.

Brewing of the Green

Cynthia Fazekas

Looking to refresh your tea service? March is a great month to celebrate Irish heritage with St Patrick's Day and the awakening of Spring with fine green teas. While Irish Breakfast might be the traditional brew of the occasion, the great popularity of green teas should also be embraced.

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Tea Tea bringing hearts together.

February Tea Themes

Cynthia Fazekas

From ground dwelling prognosticating rodents to chocolate hearts to presidents, February certainly has an eclectic lot of themes. Valentine's Day and all its sweetness gets the most amount of attention of course, because what else can so effectively distract us from our winter doldrums than love and sweet treats?

... read more
Selling Celebrate the New Year

Happy New Year 2010!

Cynthia Fazekas

Greetings TeaSmart readers! Hope you have all successfully survived another holiday season and are ready to ride through the rest of winter. Let us welcome the New Year with open arms, and hopes that it will bring less misfortune and greater good for all.

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Tea Encourage trying new things!

Freshening Up Your Tea Menu

Cynthia Fazekas

Cross-sell by providing small lists of teas that people who buy a particular tea also enjoy. For example, if a customer is deeply attached to Irish Breakfast, they may also enjoy a hearty Assam or a full-bodied China black tea. A green tea aficionado may enjoy a lightly oxidized oolong. Darjeeling lovers also seem to enjoy Fancy Formosa Bai Hao style oolongs.

... read more
Tea Beautiful Snowbird!

Snowbirds (and Tea)

Cynthia Fazekas

Winter is upon us and entered in grand style this past week by besieging those of us in New England with unrelenting snow and wind. Now that the holidays have past, we take a moment to catch our breath and consider the dark-eyed junco.

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Selling Making it pretty!

Holiday Season 2009

Cynthia Fazekas

...Is not for the faint-hearted. There has been so much anticipation and so much debate about how much stock to carry or not carry. And oh so much nervousness! But by all accounts, people are out there, spending and looking for ways to gift appropriately and make the people in their lives feel special.

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Selling A few of our Adagio TEAm members

Adagio Teas Wholesale

Cynthia Fazekas

Loose bulk teas, gourmet tea bags and even retail ready Adagio branded tins are available for wholesale purchase. Our famous ingenuiTEA tea maker as well as an assortment of lovely glassware can be purchased by the case at special wholesale pricing.

... read more
Staff Training Holiday Season Survival

Holiday Season Survival

Cynthia Fazekas

Every shop owner and tearoom owner I've gotten to know over the years has a tendency to work themselves into oblivious this time of year. This season especially you might have not hired as much help as in years past with the dismal economic news. Remember that managing stress is as vital as managing your business, so here a few tips for keeping yourself healthy this holiday season.

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Staff Training Rationality makes a great shield.

Dealing with Difficult Customers

Cynthia Fazekas

The holiday season can be enormously stressful, even more so during difficult economic times. Anyone who has spent any time in retail or in customer service has likely seen the darker side of human nature when someone forgets their manners and is, shall we say, less than respectful.

... read more
Tea Gingerbread guy, chillin' out.

What's New? - November 2009

Cynthia Fazekas

Just in time for the holidays, Adagio Teas Wholesale has added two new lines to our bulk tea offerings. Fabulous chai blend and some rather cutting edge new teas to tantalize taste buds! Also our ever-popular holiday teas are ready to go!

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Tea Tea has always been there...

A Ten Year Journey

Cynthia Fazekas

Growing up in New England, I've always come to think of autumn as the season of change. Deciduous trees shedding their leaves denote this transition of nature clearing out the old in anticipation of the new. And so it was for me one autumn ten years ago as I was leaving behind an old career in anticipation of something new.

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Tea This writer's brain without tea

Ramping Up for Fall

Cynthia Fazekas

If your tea business is like most, you are about to get busy. Finally! After the long, slow pace of summer, people are getting back to school, back to work and that means...Tea Time!

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Selling Last year went loop-de-loop!

Too Much, Too Little, Too Late

Cynthia Fazekas

Once upon a time life was easy. Historical sales information was a reliable indicator of what could be expected year-to-year and season-to-season. Recent times have been tricky, unprecedented and downright unpredictable. This makes it very hard to project sales and determine how much stock to have on had at any given time. While over-buying seems likely to be a huge pitfall, under-buying is just as serious a business mistake. Let us ponder which is the lesser of two evils.

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Marketing Summer survival can be tasty!

Summer Survival

Cynthia Fazekas

Summer can be long and painful for the fine tea purveyor. Even though iced tea is such a popular beverage, the hot version is what sustains throughout the year and generally the focus of tea businesses. And given the current economic climate, this means more pain for most than the usual seasonal slowdown.

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Tea Giving tea its "props."

Tea vs. Teatime

Cynthia Fazekas

Recently it seems more and more people are going to tearooms for the first time. This is a very good thing, and generally they enjoy it immensely, however the comment frequently heard is lack of a strong tea presence. They expected more tea selection and to learn more about this previous brew. How can this be in such an enlightened age?

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Marketing A web page is a must!

Web Smart!

Cynthia Fazekas

In today business world it is becoming increasingly more important to have a web presence. Even if you do not actually sell products online or even in your tearoom or cafe, people frequently do online searches to find information about a business before they go. Sometimes all they need is business hours, address or a phone number, but it creates a great opportunity to grab their attention, let them know what you offer and what they can expect when they visit.

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Industry News Sofi award icons

Summer Fancy Food Show 2009

Cynthia Fazekas

Every summer New York City's Javits center is the venue for the NASFT Fancy Food Show - a veritable cakewalk of treats and trends in the gourmet food industry. As many of you also offer food or sweets to go with your tea selection, it seems like a good topic to cover.

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Staff Training Timely wisdom

Using Downtime Wisely

Cynthia Fazekas

Even the best tea businesses have felt the recent economic contraction - some more dramatically than others. While difficult times may cause anxiety and stress, it is not a time to worry, pace and ring ones hands. One thing any business owner has too little of is time, so if you are finding yourself with a little too much of this precious resource, here are some ways other business owners are putting it to good use.

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Marketing This fireman enjoys Rooibos Peach after a "job."

Tea Love for Dads

Cynthia Fazekas

Every May TeaMap is loaded with Mother's Day events, but as June rolls in there is nary a one for Father's Day. Interesting. Why such gender disparity? True, many a tearoom is Victorian and a bit heavy on the frou-frou to appeal to the average guy, but don’t dads deserve the same opportunity for a day out and all the special goodies that come with a tea service?

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Tea Embrace iced tea season!

June is Iced Tea Month

Cynthia Fazekas

This time of year is magical for those of us who have suffered through a long New England winter now that the weather has stabilized and summer will soon officially arrive. As picnics, patio dinners and grilling almost anything you can eat become popular pastimes, iced tea becomes the beverage of the season!

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Tea Tropical goodness!

Spring Favorites 2009

Cynthia Fazekas

May is usually quite a glorious month, with all of nature kicking it into high gear, and numerous special occasions to celebrate! Aside from the annual pollen attack, it is one of my favorite months of the year.

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Tea Adagio Teas' Jasmine Bloom

Blooming Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

Over the past couple of years blooming teas have really blossomed (sorry – couldn't resist) in popularity. The visual impact of the slowly unfurled hand-tied leaves accounts for the immense draw these teas possess. Their beauty and exquisite nature make any tea moment a celebration.

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Tea Spring Greeter

Sweet April

Cynthia Fazekas

Finally with winter in our rear view and nature slowly reawakening we can enjoy the renewal and hope of this trans-formative season - Spring! There still may be rain and snowstorms about but even the massive yield of a blizzard is no match for the warm weather hopping down the bunny trail.

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Marketing Defending your business takes skill.

Grace Under Fire

Cynthia Fazekas

Spring usually brings a flurry of activity in the tearooms. In almost every way this is a very good thing, but it will also mean an increase in reviews of your business on reviewer sites such as TeaMap and the like. Most of the time reviews are positive things with the occasional constructive criticism, but good-natured overall. But every now and then someone will really rip your business in a very public way. When someone negatively comments about something you are passionate about it can really sting.

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Marketing Nature's reawakening.

Springtime Cometh

Cynthia Fazekas

Chances are good your customers have a touch of cabin fever, which will segue this month into an acute case of spring fever. Welcome the arrival of nature’s reawakening with spring themed events. A chance to learn paired with having tea is a win-win.

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Tea Leprechaun at work.

Top O'the Morning!

Cynthia Fazekas

One of the most popular tea blends for any tea company is Irish Breakfast. Traditionally a hearty brew that usually gets its familiar malty character from a rich Assam and is good with cream and sugar. It is bold enough to stand up against a stout TIB - traditional Irish breakfast - or a hearty plate of corned beef and cabbage.

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Tea Tea Treats

Valentine's Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

Many of you have already planned your special events for Valentine's Day and are hoping for booked tearooms. In making your event a success, give special consideration to your tea offerings. It's always good to offer both flavored and non-flavored teas especially when a meal is part of the special event menu. We suggest either a nice second flush Darjeeling or a more intriguing choice such as a fine Ti Kuan Yin oolong.

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Selling Weathering the storm

Riding Out the (Economic) Storm

Cynthia Fazekas

Economic uncertainty has everyone nervous. The media seems hell bent on reporting the bad news and giving us very little good news to keep us going. People are scared to spend money even if they are not feeling a financial pinch. It has been reported that shoppers and corporations are afraid that they will look insensitive to the current struggles of others and are buying less, canceling major events, and reining in spending in general. All this contributes to a downward spiral.

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Tea Divination devices to view the tea future - looks tasty!

Tea Scrying 2009

Cynthia Fazekas

What a year 2008! Many of us are still scratching our heads or reeling from all the upheaval and uncertainty. Hopefully, the worst is behind us and as we move into 2009 we can focus on healing, rebuilding and re-growth.

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Selling Encourage exploration with new teas.

How To Introduce New Teas

Cynthia Fazekas

With two more months of winter left to endure, we are still in peak tea selling season. Freshen up your tea selection, revive your menu and keep the ball rolling. Some of your vendors may be out of some items post-holiday season, but don't be afraid to try some new teas out on an ever more sophisticated tea customer.

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Selling Affordable Gifts

Affordable Gifts

Cynthia Fazekas

Retailing in this unsteady economic climate has been particularly challenging. Fortunately, tea is one of the healthiest comfort foods as well as an affordable luxury. It seems the tea retailers that are doing the best are the ones who really understand this and are able to convey it to their customers.

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Staff Training Holiday Season Survival

Holiday Season Survival

Cynthia Fazekas

Every shop owner and tearoom owner I've gotten to know over the years has a tendency to work themselves into oblivious this time of year. This season especially you might have not hired as much help as in years past with the dismal economic news. Remember that managing stress is as vital as managing your business, so here a few tips for keeping yourself healthy this holiday season.

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Tea Winds of autumn spinning the mill

Tumultuous Autumn 2008

Cynthia Fazekas

The autumn colors are more muted now. The bright yellows and reds have given way to mellow honeys and russets. Some trees are nearly naked with only the most tenacious leaves still clinging to their branches. With so much beauty surrounding us it is important to take moment to appreciate these little things in life. During this season of change as we all wait and watch, financial markets and the future seem to quiver like willows on a fault line.

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Marketing A web page is a must!

Web Smart!

Cynthia Fazekas

In today business world it is becoming increasingly more important to have a web presence. Even if you do not actually sell products online or even in your tearoom or cafe, people frequently do online searches to find information about a business before they go. Sometimes all they need is business hours, address or a phone number, but it creates a great opportunity to grab their attention, let them know what you offer and what they can expect when they visit.

... read more
Tea Honeybush: Sweet and sultry

Honeybush: The Other South African Beauty

Cynthia Fazekas

Roobos' Sweeter Sister - In recent years, Rooibos also known as African Red Tea has become quite the celebrity. Appearing in wild blends, hip new pyramid bags and even in super trendy RTD bottles, Rooibos is as popular as a young starlet. But Rooibos is not the only caffeine-free herbal beauty Africa has to offer. Just out of the limelight, is her lesser-known sister, Honeybush (Cyclopia spp.) Equally as rich in reputed health benefits, just as valuable as a tea placebo for the late night sipper, and perhaps just a bit more approachable.

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