Bestselling Teas of 2009

With a chill in the air we're all enjoying a bit more tea than usual this time of year. If you're looking for something different or perhaps a gift for tea-loving loved ones, here are some suggestions courtesy of customers of our online store: our top-selling teas of 2009.

Green tea lovers are looking for healthy choices. Our customers' favorite green tea this year is Organic Everyday Green Tea, which offers an excellent flavor balance and rich texture on the palate. A healthful, forgiving, and easy-to-brew tea that will reward you with great taste almost no matter how you brew it. And it's affordable enough to drink every day!

Year after year, our overall top-selling tea is Roy's hand-fired, traditional-style Monkey-Picked Tie Guan Yin. One pot of this fine, rare tea tells you why: it's a veritable symphony of fruit, florals, and fire, a rich and complex blend of all the elements that make oolong many tea lovers' preferred beverage in every season. Our top-quality tie guan yin is oxidized according to the time-honored formula "three hong (red) to seven lu (green)," in other words, until 30% of the leaf is reddish brown and 70% remains green. Roy performs the final firing here in the US to ensure maximum aromatics and flavor. Fans of this great tea will be delighted with the 2009 version, which features larger leaves packed with flavor; rich viscosity; a great balance of florals and firing; glossy bao guang ("treasured luster" - a sign of high leaf quality); and a rare and highly desireable reddish-orange liquor.

Puerh lovers won't be surprised that Topaz Puerh is our bestselling puerh in 2009. We've had this tea in our warehouse since 2000, and if you know puerh, you know that's a good thing. The small amber tips brew up into a deep golden-red infusion with a rich, full, earthy taste that has the hearty yet mellow smoothness and sweet finish of fine, aged puerh. Here's a tea that never disappoints and just keeps improving with age, truly a customer favorite year after year.

Our bestselling scented tea in 2009 is our renowned Imperial Jasmine Pearls, produced to our fanatically high standards, which include hand-wrapping each pearl in special cotton paper for optimal storage during the wait between the spring harvest of our fine green tea and the summer harvest of the best jasmine blossoms. Bursting with white tips, our pearls are almost snow-white and intensely fragrant with a rich-textured liquor. Jasmine tea is the tea most beloved in Beijing; you'll understand why once you've experienced our Imperial version of this classic.

Rounding out our Customers' Choice teas, Imperial Yunnan Gold brings all the flavor and depth of teas of Yunnan Province to a delicious black tea. Made almost exclusively from the downy golden buds of Yunnan's da ye (large leaf) cultivar, this extraordinary tea yields a bright amber liquor upon infusion. Packed with flavor and hand-crafted by skilled artisans, it's a tea you won't soon forget!

Read about more Customer Favorites in our current newsletter.