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Sep 10, 2006 07:56 PM


One of their stores opened about 8 months ago in my area (in the Sherman Oaks Fashion Square - SoCal). I stopped by yesterday and sampled their Gyokuro Imperial. It was wonderful!

I have tried a lot of teas, with a preference for green teas, and this was about as good as I have ever tasted...quite a compliment!

Has anyone else tried their teas? What have you liked? Are their teas consistent in quality? Have you purchased at their sites, or ordered online?

Any information will be appreciated...Thanks!

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  1. Teavana seems to have pretty good tea, but my problem with them, judging by their location in Charleston, SC, is that the staff doesn't seem very knowledgable about preparing tea. If you order a cup of tea, they serve it to you in a cardboard cup a la Starbucks and send you on your way. No second or third infusions. When we asked, they said they dump the leaves after the first infusion. Heresy for tea lovers! Hopefully, this is not the case at all locations because it's a real shame to treat good tea that way. Teabucks, anyone?

    7 Replies
    1. re: Low Country Jon

      "If you order a cup of tea..." ??? Can you order tea in your Teavana store by the cup? Perhaps I didn't hang around long enough to notice this, but the store I was in was -- I believe -- strictly selling tea wares and loose wasn't really a tea bar, I don't think?????

      I only spoke with one staff person and she seemed quite knowledgeable about their teas. Also, forgive me for repeating myself, the tea that I sampled was perfectly brewed!

      1. re: liu

        I think the Teavana at Fashion Square is a tea bar (for want of a better name). Pretty sure they have individual drinks. I'll try to step in the next time I'm there, which should be later this week because I have some pants being hemmed at Banana Republic (which finally finished the remodel).

        1. re: Debbie W

          Thanks, Debbie W. I will wait for your post.

          If it IS a tea bar, are all of their loose-leaf teas available for a cup of tea? Do you think their teas are better than some of the teas offered at the coffee shops...Bean and Tea Leaf or Starbucks or Peets? I was hoping this might be true!

          I am actually hoping that they offer rather high-end choices by the cup so that one might zero-in on a favorite and not have to spend extravagantly for samples, some of which are just so-so.

          1. re: liu

            My impression is they offer all their bulk teas by the cup as well. So, despite my griping, they are still a much better choice for tea than any coffee chains I've been to.

        2. re: liu

          The locations I'm familiar with serve tea by the cup. The tea I had at my local branch was okay--we were just really disappointed they didn't offer multiple infusions on greens and oolongs. I mean, the second or third infusion is often the best one of all, depending on the tea. The staff seemed rather confused when we asked about multiple infusions, as if the concept was entirely foreign to them. Of course, the place didn't even have anywhere to sit, so they probably never had anyone linger around long enough to ask for a second infusion. Take-out only may work for coffee, but if you ask me, it's a losing proposition when it comes to tea.

          1. re: Low Country Jon

            I agree with you, Low Country Jon. I think the lack of places to sit was what led me to my conclusion that they were NOT a tea bar, rather a loose tea bar. Additionally, when I was there, no one was sipping tea from a purchased cup; customers were merely tasting their tiny sample cups.

            I just perused their catalog and they do seem to carry some interesting selections. I do so hope they are as good as they read!

            1. re: Low Country Jon

              Fall is just around the corner here in the Low Country, so next time you're at Teavana on King Street you should sip your tea in the Teavana zen rock garden.(in the little yard behind the store). Its a wonderful retreat with a lot of seating and there is never any hurry to leave. Hope you enjoy it!

        3. You can buy tea by the cup there is is a one shot deal. I had some kind of carribean concotion it was delightful so is their Chamomile. Alas from my understanding they do not do multiple infusions.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JMEB

            Thanks for confirming the one-cup purchase. Next time I will "get into it" a little more and hopefully find something delicious to take home.

          2. I purchased 2 ounces (minimum quantity) of Teavana's Gyokuro Imperial, despite the outrageous price, and gyokuro now is my favorite green tea. Fortunately, there are less expensive brands at the Nijiya market, and presumably at larger Japanese stores.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Jefferson

              Jefferson -- don't have second thoughts about purchasing Teavana's Gyokuro Imperial, even at their $15 price for 2 oz. Truly, I have tried a lot of high-end green teas (also oolongs and white teas) and I was really surprised at how good the Teavana Gyokuro was! It was about as good as I have tasted. Perhaps it was in the way they brewed it, but it had a very sweet taste -- hard to describe -- with no bitterness or funky aftertaste.

              When I return, that is the one that I would like to take home. I also like the Dragonwells (Lung Ching) which are Chinese green teas. Since you like the Gyokuro, try their Dragonwell next.

              1. re: Jefferson

                Liu is right...not all Gyokuro (jade dew) are the same. If you found one grower you liked stick with it. With something like Gyokuro, freshness is a big issue, as I believe it's an early spring, drink it when it's good and then wait for the next season.

                1. re: HLing

                  I'm listening in! Thanks, HLing, for YOUR good advice!

              2. There's one in the Prudential Center in Boston with a tea bar.

                The morrocon mint is the best I've had and the nine treasures is very good as well.

                1. Liu - I stopped into Teavana at Fashion Square this afternoon. (Caveat: I don't know anything about tea. I'll drink it if it's in front of me, and I do like it, but I just haven't educated myself. I'm more of a coffee person.) Anyway, you can have any of their teas by the cup or iced and they also have a few boba drinks and smoothies.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Debbie W

                    Thanks, Debbie W, for stopping in to answer all of MY questions! I am trying to find another errand over that way and deal with my guilt about going there instead of the gym one day! I'll get there soon...

                    Did you buy anything? Did you taste anything?

                    1. re: liu

                      No and no. I was going to do my errands and then go back and get a cup to take home, but things took longer than expected and I never went back. Next time I'll spend more time in there.

                      1. re: Debbie W

                        "Next time..." I guess that's a good sign, and you're not even a tea drinker!

                        If you like jasmine, I suggest you try the Jasmine Dragon Phoenix Pearls. If you just want something green, try the Gyokuro Imperial or the Dragonwell. If you like flavors, they seem to have quite a few in both the green teas and the stronger black teas. Black teas are too strong for my taste, and the white teas don't have enough flavor for me...too delicate. I know you will find something that you like.

                        Thanks, again, Debbie W.