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Dec 22, 2009 09:11 AM

Best website to buy tea?

Looking to buy some great loose leaf tea online. I've come across several. Wondering if there are any recomendations out there. Thanks

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    1. re: ItalyFan

      I agree with the choice of Upton Tea. I have been buying from them for years; their selection is encyclopedic.

      1. re: Wineack

        I'll third Upton Tea. Top quality, huge selection, fair prices. I've been buying from them for at least ten years, and they've never disappointed.

      2. re: ItalyFan

        Count me in on Upton Tea as well. I like that they date the packages. They arrive so quickly though that might just be because I am in MA.

        1. re: ItalyFan

          add my recommendation here. Going on 12 years, great quality and selection, plus I always learn something from them.

          1. re: okra

            Yet another for Upton. Comprehensive catalog, great tea, great service.

          2. re: ItalyFan

            Has anyone tried the tea biscuits? Do they hold their shape under hot water as advertised?

          3. I strongly recommend Special Teas. Very good selection and info on their site, fair prices and free shipping for a $50+ order. If i order before noon, the tea often arrives the next day!

            4 Replies
            1. re: WTF51

              I second this rec. I've been using this site for a few years and have never been disappointed.

              1. re: lucyis

                Special Teas closed end of 2011 and turned their mailing list over to Teavana, which I don't like the selections or prices.
                I have wondered what became of Specisl T so suddenly and really miss them for the large variety, quality and very reasonable prices.
                They suppliied the best Tie Kwan Yin. Have not found another supplier, yet.

                Due to the heavy metal toxicity, I only drink ORGANIC Greeen, OOlong and White teas.
                Black teas have the highest like Flourides. Less chance of insecticides, etc. also.
                Recent order was for Peony White Tea and organic Heavily Roasted OOlong from THE TEA DEPOT. They are out of stock for the Tie Kuan Yin favorite. Good pricing and prompt service.

                1. re: nutrition

                  Have you tried organic green and white tea from Darjeeling? See my post above. I have no commercial interests whatsoever, but being from Bengal, am curious to learn how these stack up against the best of the Chinese!!

                  These people also have completely organic black, and some oolong teas as well. I personally can attest that the Darjeeling blacks from this Makaibari estate are among the 2 or 3 best in the world, and the Silver Tips is the best in its class.

                  Happy hunting!

                  1. re: nutrition

                    I had used up my supply from Special Teas, Tea Depot, and took a Tea shopping trip to China in October to stock up my Tea Cellar. Prefer Organic teas to avoid any heavy metal contamination.
                    Much to my surprise, the prices in China are on the high side and often more then those in the USA. It must be the unfair exchange rate, which is less the then half of what it should be for everything.

                    Tea Galleries has nice teas at prices on the high end and simpler to Teavana! Location of shop is with their Warehouse in a LOW traffic Industrial area of San Diego. I was looking for some tasty White Teas to round out my Tea Cellar with a low caffeine, high anti-oxidant evening treat. When I arrived, there were two customers waiting at the counter for some time as I look over their extensive inventory. One peron left without making any purchase, and I don't know what happened to the young man, when I got waited on.

                    I just found a website that I like with more reasonable pricing and a complete inventory of traditional and flavored teas. Second looks very interesting for Internet ordering. That will be my next stop for ordering.

              2. I have been very happy with the fragrant leaf for the past 3 years.

                1. Tea Gschwendner is by far the best online merchant I've found:
                  I'd only recommend it if you already know what you are looking for in tea, however. It's not a great site for the beginner, or for an introduction to loose leaf tea.
                  For that I would recommend Adagio Teas:
                  SpecialTeas is pretty similar to Adagio, but I find Adagio slightly more user friendly. I use Adagio for less expensive, everyday teas, and Gschwendner for pricier, premium teas.

                  1. Absolutely Upton Tea. Be sure to check out the Seasons' Pick section.