Category Archives: Education / Support

Why You Should Be Drinking Matcha Tea

Learn about the tea that has graced the cups of ancient royalty and health gurus alike.

Exploring Matcha Tea

Matcha tea is a unique tea for tea lovers and health enthusiasts alike. Originating in China and flourishing in Japan, Matcha tea has been a special tea often consumed during rituals and ceremonies by religious leaders and royalty. The potent powdered tea is the strongest type of green tea offered and is consumed today for its many believed health benefits. Matcha is estimated to be 10 to 15 times stronger than your average green tea, due to the tea being made of entire tea leaves that are powdered. It also contains tons of antioxidants and beta-carotene, even trumping blueberries in antioxidant power. Many other benefits claimed by Matcha drinkers are long periods of increased energy with no jitters or shakes, improved alertness, stress relief and a substantial metabolism boost. It is also believed that the powdered tea can act as an anti-aging beverage, lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, boosts the immune system and acts as a strong body cleanser.

Matcha fine powdered green tea

Matcha fine powdered green tea

Preparation of Matcha Tea

Bamboo Whisk Method:

  1. Add the matcha tea powder to a small amount of hot liquid of choice, using a matcha tea bowl, cappuccino mug etc. Whisk briskly in a vertical up-and-down direction, not circular, to make a thick, green paste.
  2. Add remaining hot liquid to the paste, and stir thoroughly. The matcha powder will dissolve quickly and easily
  3. Sweeten with stevia (vanilla stevia tastes the best), honey, agave, or any sweetener of choice. A sprinkle of cinnamon is perfect with matcha!

Click the video link below for a visual guide through the process

Making Matcha Tea

Notes:

-You can mix the drink without a whisk, however whisking the paste is the quickest and easiest way.

-Due to the “settling” of the fine matcha tea powder in the containers/bags, we recommend “dry” whisking each individual serving of the matcha tea powder in a bowl/cup before adding liquids. The matcha powder can also be sifted using a fine sifter. After dry whisking, the liquids are then added and the matcha drink can be whisked as per usual. This extra, quick and easy step of “dry whisking” will ensure a perfectly smooth, lump-free beverage!

Storage of Matcha Tea:

Matcha tea is extremely sensitive to light and heat. The tea leaves are flash frozen as soon as they are picked to preserve freshness, and then ground into a powder and vacuum packed in tins or foil bags Once opened and exposed to light/air/heat, the matcha tea powder will begin to oxidize and degrade rapidly. Try storing your tea in air-tight opaque container or sealed in a dark cool area like a refrigerator.

Sourcing Direct Trade Coffees

Guatemala blog

Tea Brewing Guide

French Press Brewing

Chemex Brewing Guide

Secrets To Great Espresso

Basics of espresso, five steps

 

 

Passport Tea guide

Passport Tea Guide- click here to download our tea guide


Fall and winter is a great time for rejuvenation, health and exploration.   Whether you’re drinking to new beginnings or your health, here are 10 great ways you can celebrate tea.  Try Passport loose leaf teas and taste the difference.

1.  Rejuvenate.  Revisit your old favorites such as herbal blends and traditional black teas. Clean out your cupboard and invest in some fresh teas.  Try a blend of teas with citrus like Grapefruit and Orange Green.

2.  Sip to Your Health.  Green Teas like Pomegranate Green, Chinese Pinhead Gun Powder, and Japanese Jade Sencha  are high in antioxidants and vitamin C.  The healthiest way is to drink these teas is in their purest form.  Skipping the calories from sugar or cream is a great healthy start to any day.

3.  Relax.  Herbal Tisanes are all 100% caffeine free.  The ingredients of our Relaxing Blend are Peppermint leaf and whole chamomile.  Sipping herbal tea is a great way to unwind and relax. A wonderful choice before bed because of the calming and soothing effects.

4.  Nurture.  Did you know Rooibos Teas are high in antioxidants and contain no caffeine? Similar to black tea in taste and looks but coming from a African bush that is not classified as tea (Camellia sinensis).  Desert Orange Rooibos is infused with crisp orange making this a delicious combination.

5.  Back to Basics.  Just because they are your old favorites does not mean they are boring.  Begin your day with an old world tea originating from India, such as English Breakfast or Darjeeling.  Traditional  English Breakfast makes a bright, straight forward brew, having a brisk character balanced by a smooth finish.

6.  Refresh.  Caffeine-free infusions – fine and relaxing brews are a pleasure to savor.  Tisanes come from the world’s botanicals such as dried fruits, herbs, spices and flowers and do not contain any teas so naturally they are caffeine free.  Fruit teas are much lower in calories and carbohydrates than fruit drinks, because they do not contain any added sugar.

7.  Explore.  Rare White tea comes from young tea leaves and it is picked just before the leaf opens on the stem, then air dried to lock in its color and flavor.  Aromatic and delicate-bodied, the Mutan is an excellent introduction to  rare white tea.

8.  Spice it up.   Scented or flavored black teas begin with smooth Chinese tea  adding fruit, herbs, botanicals and only the finest flavorings blend together producing a bright flavor.  Combinations with spices and flavors like  Cinnamon Orange Spice. is a wonderful winter tea.

9.  Brew the best.  When brewing teas, it is always necessary to brew at a proper temperature to enjoy the best flavor from the tea.  Improper brewing temperatures lead to a weak or bitter taste.
White Teas    170-190F
Green Teas    170-190F
Oolong Teas    185F-200F
Darjeeling Teas    200F – 212F
Black Teas    200F-212F
Herbals    212F

10. Store properly.  Exposure to excessive light, heat and moisture can and will rob tea leaves of its flavors.  Tea stays freshest when stored in a dry, cool, dark place in an air-tight container.  Black tea lasts the longest and  may be be kept for two years.  Green tea loses its freshness more quickly, usually in less than a year.  Gunpowder tea, its leaves being tightly rolled, keeps longer than more open-leafed green teas.  (An exception, Pu-erh tea improves with age.)

4 Steps to Great Iced Tea

While Labor Day brings about the close of summer for most areas of the country, here in Arizona it’s still blazing hot! We’ve got fun fall flavors on the horizon, but who wants to drink hot tea when it’s 110 degrees? Not us!So in honor of all the warm-climate residents, we’re posting our favorite at-home iced tea brewing method so you can squeeze the last few drops out of summer.
 

  1. Place 6 teaspoons of tea into a teapot or heat-resistant pitcher.
  2. Pour 2-3 cups of freshly boiled water over the tea.*
  3. Steep for 4 minutes and then strain tea leaves. Also, if adding sweetener, do so now.
  4. Add cold water and ice to fill pitcher.
  5. Enjoy!

*Note: If using green or white tea, DO NOT pour boiling water over the leaves as this will make it bitter.  Instead, boil the water, remove it from the heat for 2 minutes, and then pour it.

6 Reasons To Choose The Aurelia

A leader in the industry, Nuova Simonelli produces top tier commercial espresso machines along with grinders and home/office espresso machines. Along with regional and national support, Nuova Simonelli recently highlighted the barista craft through sponsorship of the World Barista Championships.

Here’s 6 Reasons why Nuova Simonelli’s Aurelia is the official machine of the WBC:

1. Temperature Stability. The result is an amazing and truly remarkable system that self-stabilizes using its own water and a single heat source to maintain thermal equilibrium.

2. Brew group weighs over 12 pounds. A key factor in the machine’s temperature stability, it also allows the operator to customize the degree of pre-infusion, brew temperature,
and flow rate individually.

3. Certified as Ergonomic for Baristi by the European Institute of Psychology and Ergonomics. Unique push-pull steam levers, wide-angle visual fields, exposed group head, soft touch silicon buttons and smooth locking porta-filters are all contributing factors!

4. Each group head on the Aurelia has a one-liter boiler of fresh water on reserve. The fresh water never comes in contact with a heating element, therefore eliminating the risk of alkalinity spikes.  Thus the water delivered to the coffee is always fresh, controllable, and pH balanced.

5. The Soft Infusion System. A pre-infusion system that is adjustable, consistent, and has no risk of user error.  This is unique because it centrifugally extracts by injecting water at different angles into the coffee cake.  Thereby eliminating channeling and maximizing espresso extraction by creating more contact time between the water and the coffee.

6. Automatic self-cleaning back-flush program.  This is a big time saver and let’s face it, time equals money!

Along with the Aurelia, we carry a full line of equipment to meet your needs, whether you’re interested in adding a simple coffee of the day program or opening a full-blown coffeehouse. Consider us your one-stop-shop for equipment, product, training, and barista supplies. Please contact us for more information!