Discovered by accident more than 5,000 years ago, tea is the most popular beverage in the world next to water and the USA is the third largest importer of tea after Russia and Pakistan. January is National Hot Tea Month and a good time for a perfectly steeped cup to help decompress.

According to the Tea Association of the USA, studies show tea can counteract tiredness and can benefit work performance. Research also suggests drinking tea supports cardiovascular health. A new study found that black tea can reduce blood pressure in hypertensive individuals and that tea flavonoids may help increase metabolism. Packed with antioxidants, other research has shown daily green tea consumption can reduce the risk of certain types of cancers. Tea has less caffeine than coffee and the types that do contain caffeine usually contain about 50% less than coffee. Another recent study says people who drink tea have a 20% less chance of having a stroke or heart attack than those who don’t.

Oregon-based Stash Tea, which has a collection of more than 150 varieties of loose leaf and tea bags in flavors from decaf chocolate hazelnut to blueberry superfruit and spice dragon red chai, has a potful of suggestions of how to pay homage to the leaves that lift spirits and help us read the future. Learn more about painting with tea, how to make tea-infused one-minute mug cakes and  tea based on your enneagram type or astrological sign.

Naturally, the perfect tea needs a perfect vessel. In addition to some of the best teas and assortments available online, Tea Forte also carries a fun line of teaware including an extensive selection of artful tea steeping cups and infusers, tea pots and tea sets, as well as electric kettles. 

And if you’re up for venturing out for the ultimate high tea experience, our favorites are the Asian-inspired High Tea and Highballs at the Le Méridien Pasadena Arcadia and in the living room of the Peninsula Beverly Hills.

National Hot Tea Month

Afternoon tea at Le Méridien Pasadena Arcadia (Michele Stueven)

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