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December 15, 2009

Tea as a Guilt-Free Dessert

Kerstin just finished making a ton of great cookies and sweets for Christmas.  I absolutely love German goodies and look forward to them every year.   I really enjoy something a little sweet after dinner.   While my kids can eat sweets without any outward signs, I have to spend more time hiking the mountains or on the treadmill to counteract the effects.  Fortunately, there are some alternatives that satisfy but don’t pile on the calories.  Teas and Herbals can provide the sweet treat without the guilt – Teas like Pumpkin Pie, Tiramasu Marscapone and Gingerbread House are examples of very low calorie teas that even when not sweetened, curb the cravings.

Kerstin was recently on Sonoran Living Live here in Phoenix to talk about this and even gave a recipe for a Chai Latte that has less than a quarter of the Big Chain’s calories with no compomise in flavor.

While I plan to occasionally indulge with the home baked goodies, it is nice to have a alternative for days when I don’t have the time to work it off.

Have a great Holiday time whatever your tradition!

December 12, 2009

Happy Holidays

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — wbwingert @ 9:00 pm

Once again, it is the time of year when everybody is very busy getting ready for the holidays.

There is lots of shopping, wrapping, cooking and baking to be done.  If you are still looking for the perfect gift, but are tired of the crowded malls, or are looking for something out of the ordinary, then come see us at Souvia. Besides convenient parking and individual service from our tea consultants, we have great gifts for family, friends, co-workers and teachers.  You can choose from ready-made gifts, or let us help you put together a custom gift basket. Tea always makes a unique and personal gift.

During the hustle and bustle, don’t let the stress of getting ready for the festivities take the magic out of this wonderful time of year. Be sure to take some time for yourself and relax over a cup of tea. With flavors such as Nutcracker Suit, Gingerbread House and Harvest Moon, you will surly find an imaginary journey in each cup! 

As this is year is coming to an end, we would like to express our deepest appreciation for all our wonderful customers who, through their continued loyalty, have seen us through this economically tumultuous year. Thank you for your loyalty and we look forward to seeing all of you throughout the holiday season and in the next year!

Happy Holidays from the Souvia team: Bret, Kerstin, Nombi, Stevie, Suzanne, Mike, Kristin,  Zoe and Max

December 4, 2009

Manly Tea List – Updated

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — wbwingert @ 8:03 am

In discussions with men about tea, I find that many of them are unfamiliar or uncomfortable with the idea of drinking tea.  While in many of the world’s cultures tea is consumed by men, in the United States, many men’s tea consumption is limited to ice tea at their favorite Mexican restaurant.  Perhaps it is the image of women in frilly dresses sitting around a plate of tiny sandwiches and cups trimmed with flowers and pastel colors.  Or, it could be the images of coffee conjured by TV crime shows, the wild west and old WWII movies are more compelling than tea. Whatever the reason, some men don’t think tea is “manly”.


I must admit that I used to be non-tea drinker.  However, after three years in Japan and my experiences with the varieties of teas from around the world, I have a new view of tea.  There are several attractions to tea from a male point of view.

  • There are many teas that have the bold flavor and body to stand up to coffee
  • There are teas whose flavors are more subtle, but nonetheless interesting
  • Teas offer benefits beyond the taste (health, smell, looks, etc)
  • Teas, like wine, are great companions to food


In convincing non-tea drinking men to try tea I have compiled a list of those teas that seem to appeal to them.  This list is known as the “Manly Tea list”.


  1. Lapsong Souchong – This black tea has a smoky campfire-like flavor from the drying process.   Think single malt scotch or a fine cigar
  2. Green Menthos -  a mild green tea flavored with mint.  It is refreshing hot or cold and requires no sugar.  A great introduction to green teas
  3. Gen Mai Cha – a Japanese blend of green tea with toasted rice kernels.  It has a great full body and served as a coffee substitute for me while living in Japan
  4. Kukicha Toasted – made from the stalks of tea plant, is nearly caffeine free but rich like coffee. It has a strong, sweet, slightly chocolate-like flavor.
  5. Gunpowder – A great way to try a straight green tea, named for its tightly rolled leaf.  Plus what manly man wouldn’t like something with the word “gun” in it!
  6. Russian Caravan – A black tea, with Lapsong Souchong in it along with some exotic spices.  A smooth, rich drink
  7. Pu-Erh mini-Touchas – this tea comes in cake form.  It has an earthy smell, medium body, and a unique taste.  Not for the faint of heart!
  8. Morning After – detoxifying herbal blend with a touch of mint.  Cleanse and sooth your system!
  9. Tiramasu Marscapone – Ok, I know this does not sound manly but this Rooibos makes a great finish after a meal, it has no calories, caffeine and won’t add to your waistline
  10. China Breakfast – No milk or sugar needed in the great blend of Chinese black teas.  A great mornign cup!


So, be a man and give tea a try!