Coffee and Tea Newsletter: June 2009
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Steeped in History: The Art of Tea
Fowler Museum at UCLA
Aug. 16 - Nov. 19

Hot or iced, bagged or loose, black or green — enjoying a cup of tea, whatever form it takes, is an act performed at least 3 billion times a day the world over. Indeed, more people drink tea than any other beverage except water.

"Steeped in History: The Art of Tea," on display at the Fowler Museum at UCLA from Aug. 16 through Nov. 29, is a wide-ranging exhibition that brings together centuries of art from three continents to delve into the history and culture of tea.

From Asia to the West, tea has played a variety of profound roles on the world scene — as an ancient health remedy, an element of cultural practice and a source of spiritual insight. Historically, tea was also a catalyst for international conflicts and horrific labor conditions in various countries.

Throughout its history, tea has been a prevalent theme in the visual arts — tea-related scenes embellish ceramics and textiles and form the subject of paintings and drawings, and all manner of vessels have been fashioned for its preparation and presentation.

"Steeped in History" brings together rare Chinese ceramics and paintings, 18th- and 19th-century Japanese ceramics and prints, English and colonial American paintings, vintage photographs, historical documents, tea-serving paraphernalia and furniture from many countries, and much more to tell the fascinating history of tea.

"Steeped in History: The Art of Tea" is guest curated by Beatrice Hohenegger, author of "Liquid Jade: The Story of Tea From East to West" (St. Martin's Press, 2007), who also edited the multi-authored volume Steeped in History: The Art of Tea (2009), published by the Fowler Museum in conjunction with this exhibition and distributed by the University of Washington Press.

Major support for "Steeped in History" is provided by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Ahmanson Foundation. Additional support is generously provided by the Edna and Yu-Shan Han Charitable Foundation and Numi Tea.

The accompanying programs are made possible through the Yvonne Lenart Public Programs Fund, and Manus, the support group for the Fowler Museum. Media sponsorship is provided by Edible Los Angeles.

The Fowler Museum at UCLA is open Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. and Thursdays from noon to 8 p.m.; it is closed Monday and Tuesday. The museum is part of the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture (UCLA Arts). For more information, call 310-825-4361 or visit


Marley Coffee
Music For Your Mouth

Earlier this month Rohan Marley, son of the late Bob Marley, announced the launch of Marley Coffee, a certified organic coffee brand cultivated from the Marley family farm in Jamaica.

The brainchild of long time friends Rohan Marley and Shane Whittle, the company is a labor of love and a tribute to Rohan's father, music legend Bob Marley. "My father came from the farmland in Nine Mile. There, he learned a deep respect for nature and humanity--respect that helped guide his life and ours. He said he would return to the farm one day. That was his dream," said Rohan.

Bob Marley's dream has now become a reality and is very much alive in the company's core philosophy “ITAL”, meaning for all things Pure, True and Vital. ITAL is embodied in everything the company represents, from the ethical treatment of the company's farm workers on the Marley coffee farm to the sustainable cultivation of coffee trees. The Marley Estate sits atop of the Blue Mountains of Jamaica, a beloved region of the world especially for coffee lovers. Marley Coffee offers both single origin and intoxicating blended coffees.

  • Mystic Morning Wake Up Coffee MediumRoast – this rich but snappy coffee is medium to full bodied with wonderful acidity. Aromas and tastes of cocoa, spice, cedar, cinnamon and cooked pumpkin gives you the perfect morning kick. 12 oz. $14.99.
  • Simmer Down Organic Swiss Water Decaf – Aromas of cocoa, nutmeg, star anise and spices of the West Indies fill this cup. Simmer Down reveals chocolate, and smoky tastes with great body and mild acidity leaving a peppery finish. 12 oz. $14.99.
  • One Love Organic Ethiopian Yirgacheffe – From the birthplace of coffee, One Love’s floral aromas unfold with hints of blueberry, cocoa and spice with a medium body and bright acidity. It tantalizes the palette leaving a profound cherry finish. 12 oz. $14.99.
  • Lively up! Organic 5 Bean Espresso Blend – This 5-bean espresso is dynamically balanced and rich in body. The dense, abundant taste leaves a long, savory finish with flavors of cocoa, candied fruit and buttery caramel notes. Enjoy as espresso, drip or press. 12oz. $14.99.
  • Jammin Java Organic Bold Full City Roast – Sultry, smoky, sweet, and yet unexpectedly smooth. Full bodied with traces of earthy overtones, dark chocolate berries that produce a zingy acidity and rich lingering finish. 12oz. $14.99.

Proceeds from the sale of the coffee will go to the Marley Coffee Foundation, which helps youth soccer programs in rural coffee growing regions of Jamaica.


Book Buzz

Iced Tea:
50 Recipes for Refreshing Tisanes, Infusions, Coolers, and Spiked Teas

Written by Fred Thompson

“Tea is what all Chinese and many Asians select as their daily beverage of choice—and you should too. A delicious ice-cold cup of tea is a great variation on the traditional hot cup of tea and it will certainly be a welcome addition to your recipe file, plus it’ll be a definite hit at your next summer outdoor party.” —Martin Yan, chef and host of the PBS show Yan Can Cook

Since its introduction at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, iced tea has been a favorite American beverage showing up at family gatherings, backyard barbecues, 4th of July picnics, and on the menu of nearly every restaurant.

Fred Thompson shows just how easy it is to make a wide variety of iced teas right at home: from classics (Southern Style Ice Tea, Solar Tea) to infusions (Iced Mango Tea, Berry Spice Iced Tea), from spritzers (Green Tea Passion Fruit Spritzer) to cocktail teas (Beach Bourbon Slush) and more.

In his book Iced Tea, Thompson discusses basic methods for brewing tea, the types of teas and tea blends that are best iced, as well as a vast array of flavors and flavorful combinations that can be mixed with iced tea to create refreshing new drinks.

50 sure-to-satisfy recipes make iced tea a truly exciting anytime beverage while still maintaining the pure flavor and goodness that has ensured its place in American tradition. Thompson shares his years of experience brewing, tasting, and enjoying iced tea “the way it was meant to be made” at home with your own two hands.

Published by The Harvard Common Press, May 2002.
96 pages. $12.95 hardcover.



Himalayan Green Tea Bier
From Ineeka®, Inc.

A fairly large crowd gathered at the Ineeka Inc. booth on the first day of the Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City. Here’s why…The Chicago based producer of certified organic and biodynamic tea introduced the first certified organic green tea beer (5.5% ABV) beverage. Ineeka’s “Himalayan Green Tea Bier™” garnered early praise by the thousands of industry and trade members to whom it was revealed this spring. The product took the “Best New Product/Most Unique Product” award at the Natural Products Expo in April 2009.

“With a reverence for tradition and focus on building a sustainable future, we formulated a healthy, if not revolutionary new beverage, combining the graceful expression of green tea and artisan crafted beer. A touch of warm ginger brings a warming appreciation to an age-old brew. Green tea and beer are the world’s oldest and most widely consumed brewed beverages and merging them into one delicious product has created a beverage unmatched for its flavor and healthy appeal,” said Shashank Goel, Founder and CEO of Ineeka,Inc. Goel boasts that this innovative drink opens up a whole new beverage category in an otherwise crowded and mundane segment and adds that “Ineeka has always been at the forefront of developing the best tasting and purest products using fresh organic teas, herbs and other ingredients.”

Like their award-winning teas, Ineeka’s Himalayan Green Tea Bier does not use any extracts or flavorings, just freshly brewed organic malt, hops, ginger, and green tea grown on our organic, biodynamic and fair trade farms in the Himalayas.

“We are pleased to recognize the ingenuity and vision behind Ineeka’s Himalayan Green Tea Bier. Brands like Ineeka keep the marketplace fresh and continue to revolutionize the industry,” says Tony Olson, CEO of SPINS, the leading information and services provider for the natural products industry. “It is encouraging to see manufacturers taking an innovative approach to driving growth and capturing consumer attention, particularly at an interval where doing so has become increasingly difficult.”

For more information, visit

Café La Paz
Sweet Cinnamon Coffee in an Instant

If you don’t have an olla de barro (earthen pot) on hand, don’t worry. You can still enjoy all the flavor and aroma of an authentic Mexican café de olla thanks to the creators of Café La Paz, the instant café deolla.

Rich and delicious, an authentic Mexican café de olla is created by making coffee, pot-boiled in traditional earthenware pots, with cinnamon, cloves, and piloncillo sugar. While contemporary recipes may use dark brown sugar as a substitute for the traditional piloncillo, the historical recipe dates back to the 18th century where reports tell of thisbeloved coffee being served at funerals in remote Mexican villages and even spiked, on occasion, with a splash of tequila or rum to relieve an evening chill.

Today, you can enjoy a café de olla at authentic Mexican restaurants or at specialty coffeehouses (where you may still get your café served in a traditional earthenware mug). Now you can also enjoy a café de olla at home, in an instant, with Café La Paz.

Hailing from the Chiapas region of Mexico is an instant and delicious version of the traditional café de olla called Café La Paz. Easy to prepare and a delight to the senses, if you can boil water you will find delight in this decadent instant beverage. Café de Olla La Paz Chiapas received the highest praise when it was recognized by “Alimentaria Mexico” and selected as Innovative Product of the Year in 2006.

100% natural, you need only to add hot water to enjoy all the flavor, aroma, color and taste of the original café de olla Mexican style coffee. Feeling adventurous? Add a bit of warm milk and you’ll enjoy a delicious cappuccino de olla or serve it over ice for a sweet treat to beat the heat.

Café La Paz is currently available in select specialty grocers in the New York/New Jersey area.