First, let me state, the title of this post is somewhat misleading seeing as I’m not opposed to either coffee or tea.

Also, this is the first post that I’m including the words “Unfocused Friday” in the title. I thought it would be fun to share something random on Fridays (though at times it may seem most of my posts are random). These posts will probably include a “Lita’s Love” too.

Having said that, I am definitely one of “those people” that you don’t even want to look at in the mornings before I’ve had my coffee.

Really. I need things quiet until then. You’ve been warned.

I think it’s just part of the whole “tradition” of morning for me – if a tradition like that can exist. I love that warm (caffeinated) beverage waking me up to start my day. So, my mornings begin with the humming sound of this:

Keurig Coffee Maker
My Keurig Coffee Maker

I love, love, love this machine! I’m not so hip on all the packaging of the k-cups though. I know I can put my own coffee in a specially designed container to avoid the packaging of the individual coffees, but I’m just not there yet. Please, send tips on this if you have any.

A strange thing has happened though, after becoming vegan, I’m not that in love with “sugary” coffee beverages. I’m not really sure the two events are related, but it seems to me, that after turning vegan, I lost my taste for anything sugary. Drink or snack. Trust me, I used to love, love, love my soy, sugar-free vanilla lattes – they knew me by name at the local Starbucks and the Peets by my office! I really can’t explain my changing taste any other way.

I am going to admit that I’m intrigued by this Vegan Pumpkin Spice Latte over at the Healthy. Happy. Life. Blog and I will most likely create it at home soon. (Oh, and this blog is FABULOUS by the way!!) It is Fall afterall, and pumpkin is necessary in every form!

I have found that when it comes to afternoons and evenings, I tend to like to drink hot tea more than coffee – especially in Fall and Winter. I do try to avoid caffeine after noon because, after 40, life’s a whole new ballgame in that area. And, somehow, decaf coffee just doesn’t do it for me. I’d rather have an aromatic cup of herbal tea. (My father was a big “tea” drinker so maybe that’s where I got my taste for it.) One of my absolute loves is herbal tea before bedtime in the winter months.

(I’m not going to get in to all the benefits or detriments of coffee and tea, etc. I’m just going to accept that we’ve all read  information supporting both sides and, so, continue sharing my loves.)

A Tea Story

A couple of months ago, one of my dearest friends visited me from her home base in New Mexico, and we headed to San Francisco for the day. One of our goals was to visit a tea shop in Chinatown that she had heard about.

Entrance to Chinatown San Francisco
Entrance to Chinatown

I love to visit tea shops. I love to hear about the origin of the teas they have, the flavors and scents they emit and, definitely, I love to participate in the little tea ceremonies they have and, of course, sample some delicious teas.

It’s almost as fabulous as visiting a winery for a wine tasting…almost.

The tea shop we visited was “The Red Blossom Tea Company”.

Red Blossom Tea Company
My friend Theresa at the Red Blossom Tea Company

Here’s what my tea pouch says about the company:

Red Blossom Tea Company is a family owned tea shop in the heart of San Francisco’s Chinatown. Importers and merchants of rare teas and artisan tea ware for the past quarter century, we have cultivated direct relationships with growers, artisans and craftsmen to bring you teas that are exceptional, tea wares that are no less than extraordinary.

Red Blossom Tea Company

As you approach the store, the glorious scent of the tea draws you inside. As with any tea shop, they have an amazing assortment of teas. It could truly be overwhelming except the staff in the store puts you at ease. Not only are they are able to describe and explain the different teas, but they ask you the right questions to help steer you towards teas that meet your tastes.

Red Blossom Tea Company teas

They also have a beautiful selection of tea making and serving pieces – delicate and pretty.

Red Blossom Tea Company supplies

They’ll demonstrate the “proper” way to serve tea and some of the steps in a Japanese tea ceremony.

Tea serving basic pieces
Basic pieces for tea serving.

It’s such a beautiful art. While you watch your anticipation of actually tasting the tea just grows and grows. They also share with you how and where the tea is grown and what makes each tea taste different.

Tea Ceremony

Theresa and I purchased different teas so that we could share them later. It’s amazing how just a couple of ounces of tea is actually quite a lot of leaves. Here are the varieties we purchased:

  • Elderflower Osmanthus
  • Jing Xuan – Formosa Oolong Tea
  • Peppermint Rose
  • Silver Peony

All in all, it was a very successful adventure.

San Francisco Red Blossum Tea Company

At the time we visited, it was still summertime and not a “tea” time for me. So, the teas I purchased have remained sealed in their packages.

But, it’s Fall now!! Tea time!! I can honestly tell you, I’m so very happy with the varieties I chose that day. The scents and flavors of these special teas are simply fabulous. And I’m happy to remember a fun day spent with a dear friend.

I also have another “love” I’d like to share with you. It’s the coolest tea “brewer” I’ve seen from  Teavana. This Teavana Perfect Tea Maker holds your tea and water while it’s steeping. Then you just place the maker over a mug and the hot tea comes out the bottom right into the mug – leaving the used tea leaves in the maker. It really appeals to my “techie” gadget side. They have a shop in my local mall and also a fabulous web site where they describe all the varieties of teas they sell and lots of fun tea making devises.

Teavana Perfect Tea Maker

That’s my “Unfocused Friday” share of the week. Neither Keurig, The Red Blossom Tea Company or Teavana has compensated me in any way for sharing my love of their products. Again, I’m just sharing a “Lita’s Love” with you.

So, what do you prefer coffee or tea…or do you prefer one over the other? Do you have a favorite brand – something I MUST try? Please share!

Happy Friday everyone!
~ Lita


6 Comments on Unfocused Fridays – Coffee or Tea

  1. Resa
    November 24, 2010 at 11:20 am (7 years ago)

    This is a wonderful tour of Red Blossom! It was so much fun. A very pleasant experience. I loved the whole experience!

    • Lita
      December 1, 2010 at 3:24 pm (7 years ago)

      Wasn’t it so much fun?!?!? I’m so glad you came for a visit…love making memories!! Miss you!!! xoxo Jenna

  2. Erin Love
    November 15, 2010 at 1:42 pm (7 years ago)

    I am just now getting into drinking tea so I’m excited to see what everyone posts.

    And I LOVE my Keurig coffe pot, too!!!

    • Lita
      November 16, 2010 at 2:20 pm (7 years ago)

      I’m so happy to see so many people love their Keurig!! the Pumpkin flavored coffee out right now is doing me in!! mmmmm!!

  3. Jeanette
    November 12, 2010 at 8:31 pm (7 years ago)

    Love Love my Keurig K-Cup Machine too!!!!! I love to hear it, look at it (it’s so sexy sitting on my counter!!!!) & the greatest PLUS it gives off such a yummy scent through out the house. I use it at least 3 times a day/night. Sorry Lita, not a tea drinker, but yes I do have K-Cup Teas for whomever stops by with a vegan cupcake to share with me…Hint-Hint!!! Uhm, wonder who you got the keurig bug from????

    Java Buddy Forvever,

  4. Lisita
    November 12, 2010 at 6:30 pm (7 years ago)

    Love this post! I definitely share the love of both tea and coffee! But if tea is keeping Theresa looking that fabulous, I’m upping my consumption of it!:-)