I love tea. I love everything about it. I love the incredible variety of flavors, the different package designs, the way it makes me feel like I am at home no matter where I happen to be. I love that it has strong British connotations. I love all of the accoutrements that go with tea; the pots, cups, saucers, sugar bowls, creamers, etc…I love sitting down with a steamy cup and just unwinding…
Much to my delight, a few weeks ago Scottie and I stumbled into the most fantastically quaint tea shop right in Sackets Harbor called, Tea Thyme. As we walked into the store front, we were immediately hit with a wonderful aroma of herbs and spices. A sample pot of some kind of butterscotch tea was steaming in the corner and emitting a sweet warm smell. Shelves lined with glass tubes full of dried teas adorned the far wall, while a rack in the center of the store displayed the colorful and glamourous packaging of a plethora of Tea Forté products.
Shortly after we appeared in the doorway, we were met by Connie, the owner of the shop who described several teas in great detail while letting us smell the sample jars. After asking a few simple questions, she determined which teas I would like the most and showed me to a warm blend of vanilla, wintergreen and an assortment of herbs and spices called Winter Solstice which has become my new best friend. The entire experience was friendly, educational and totally sensory (delicious smells, beautiful colors, light soft music).
I had been to a few tea rooms before that featured flowering teas. They look like pods of dried tea leaves that are about half the size of a ping pong ball and when dropped in boiling water, they slowly bloom into beautiful flowers as they steep into a light and delicious tea. I was excited to find that Tea Thyme carried a variety of different flowering teas and began scooping them up. Connie was kind enough to send me home with 4 different varieties that she carries in the store and a very delicate clear glass tea pot so I could take some photos of the tea after it had turned into the blossom. In typical fashion, I got a little carried away and with a little help I set up a few photo shoots complete with tea cups, linens and a few funky props. It went a little like this: