Schools & Sommeliers | Tea

Sara from Tea Happiness shares her ‘a-ha’ moment while drinking tea in Amsterdam

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Sara Shacket from Brooklyn is the force behind Tea Happiness. As a writer, blogger and tea consultant she wants to ‘continue to highlight small tea vendors and shops that are doing amazing work, but don’t get the recognition they deserve.’

Who are you and what do you do within the ‘tea business’?I’m a mom of two, I work full time (not in tea), I’m a certified Tea Sommelier, and I’ve been blogging about tea since 2010. In my blog posts I like to write about small tea business, tea history, tea 101, tea pairings, and basically anything tea-related that interests me. My blog has previously been nominated for a World Tea Award. I am also a certified tea sommelier, I completed two years of online study to receive this certification. I love conducting tea 101 and tea tasting classes, and I also do some freelance tea-writing and consulting. I have an Instagram account, where I enjoy capturing photos of my tea moments. I’m happiest when I can be creative with tea, through photos and writing.

When did your passion for tea start?
As a daughter of Eastern European immigrants, I’m a life-long tea drinker. I have fond memories of having tea time with my parents and grandparents. We would all sit around the table, sipping black tea with sugar and chat. When I was too young to drink tea I mostly just ate the sugar cubes. But it wasn’t until I started travelling as a young adult that I discovered there was more to tea than the dusty teabag.

I remember sitting in an Amsterdam café, seeing there was a tea called ‘Darjeeling’. I tried it, had an ‘ah-ha!’ moment, and have been on my tea-learning adventure ever since. I was amazed at how many different varieties of tea there are, and that it’s grown all around the world. There is so much to learn about tea, and we’re always students of the leaf, no matter how much we’ve learned.

What is a nice tea fact that most people don’t know?
President George Washington was a huge tea lover. He drank tea every morning!

What is your favorite tea and why?
Honestly, it’s any tea that I get to share with friends and family. There are so many teas I love, but the best tea is the one I can enjoy with people I care about.

What is your goal with your blog?
I started my tea blog because I was home on maternity leave, looking for something creative to do. I realized I drank a crazy amount of tea, and maybe I could write about that. The blog was born, and it’s now my cherished creative outlet. I’ve learned so much, and have met some of my closest friends through tea.

I want to continue to highlight small tea vendors and shops that are doing amazing work, but don’t get the recognition they deserve. I also want to travel to more tea-growing regions and learn about tea culture all over the world. I recently had the opportunity to travel to South Korea to learn about their tea culture. It was such an amazing experience that once it is safe to travel again, I have a long list of tea places I’d like to visit.

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