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Purveyors of fine tea, the Heisses' documentary dexterously weaves through the wars, economic upheavals and embargoes surrounding what was once considered the elixir of immortality. Though tea usage may predate written history, evidence suggests that Camellia sinensis's invigorating leaves were first cultivated centuries ago in the tea gardens of indigenous minorities in Northwestern China and along the Indian, Myanmar and Tibetan borders. Chinese monks recognized the energizing effects and medicinal value of this evergreen plant and, by touting its benefits, ignited a thirst for tea that quickly spread west via oceangoing tea clippers and along the Silk Road. The famed East India Company flourished, teatime became social tradition, and cream and sugar were found to balance tea's astringency. In this guide, the Heisses outline at length the production process from tea bush to tea cup, along with the nuances of regional varietals like China's sweet green tea and India's Darjeeling. An engaging historical and cultural study, this guide is geared toward both novice and consummate consumers intrigued by the world's 2,000-year-old tea habit. (Oct.)
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Robert J. Heiss and Mary Lou Heiss are 'The Professors of Tea' (NY Times, October 2007)
The Story of Tea was nominated in 2008 for a prestigious James Beard Book Award and an IACP Cookbook Award. It captured the award for Best Tea Book in the USA from Gourmand Awards, Paris, France, and also won the bronze for Best Tea Book in the World in 2008.
"This husband-and-wife team, with 30 years of experience sourcing teas for their shop, produced a passionate and learned book that is as much a cultural exploration as a practical guide to tea and its full enjoyment." Boulder Weekly, Maricel E. Presilla
"With their first-hand accounts, meticulous research and passion for the subject, The Story of Tea has all the makings of becoming the definitive source for tea. And it's time -- for a tea book of this caliber." The Washington Post "A Mighty Appetite" with Kim O'Donnel, October 22, 2007
"I knew it was extraordinary...No other book, to my knowledge, has contained as much fascinating and detailed information." -- spicesoflife.com, September 18, 2007
One of the best books I've read so far on tea. Very easy to read, very informative and obvious Heiss knows what she's talking about.Published 2 months ago by Shanster
This is the definitive book on tea, for me. It's written in a perfectly matter-of-fact bPublished 11 months ago by Heather
This is a highly informative book about tea and the tea industry. It traces tea through all the major countries where it is and has been grown. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Al