Iced Tea Tornado
The fascinating engineers over at Hario (known best for their household coffee wares, and their stake in the automotive headlight industry) have certainly not forgotten the tea set in their endeavours, and this Iced Tea Tornado is surely evidence of that. Its generously sized metal strainer insert allows for full leaf expansion of your looseleaf teas, all while allowing you the pleasure of brewing something arguably non-catastrophic in a vessel named after a tornado. What more could you ask from an iced tea brewer?
Available online for $24.
Tea: History, Terroirs, Varieties
French-speakers and those otherwise in the know have been hip to this incredible tea guide from Montreal tearoom and tea purveyor Camellia Sinensis for some time now. This wonderful tea book has now been made available in an English translation, making this handsome and terrifically researched guide the ideal gift for anyone who wishes to simplify the mystifications of tea from region to region, style to style, all while fanning the flames of their curiosity. Beautiful photographs and heaps of information are approachably organized here. A must-have for those who love learning about tea.
Available from online retailers for $16 and up.
White Peony Tea
Delicate, lovely white teas are a wonderful complement to the hushed snowfall of a winter's day, or, if you're celebrating somewhere that looks less like a greeting card, still a wonderful chapter in any tea journey. This particular White Peony tea, sourced by Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea in Chicago, hits all the right holiday notes—its description says it brews to the color of "light gold" and tastes like myrrh, so we recommend a frankincense pairing for this sweet and gracious cup.
Available from Intelligentsia for $6.50 per ounce.
Cherry Bark Tea Caddy
The fine travellers over at Northampton, Massachusetts tea haven Tea Trekker have seen their share of pretty tea vessels, and this beautiful cherry bark tea caddy is among the most beautiful, and culturally representative, artisan products of Japanese tea culture. For those who'd like to store their tea in something more elegant and historic than a foil pouch, this is the gift to look out for.
Available from Tea Trekker for $45.
There are few more perfect gifts—or vessels—than the versatile gaiwan, a small, simple lidded bowl that's wonderful for preparing aromatic oolong, white and green teas. Gaiwans come in myriad styles, from the classic, simple white porcelain gaiwan to highly decorative versions (perhaps your lucky recipient would prefer one hand-carved from jade?), whatever your budget or taste, you simply can't go wrong when gifting a gaiwan.
Available from many online retailers for $12 and up.
Green Tea and Kyusu Set
Looking for something to deepen the green tea experience for someone you're fond of? Rishi Tea's Japanese Green Tea Gift Set bundles two green teas—a sencha and a matcha— with a charming kyusu brewer—a traditional side-handled Japanese vessel for preparing green tea—painted with charming flowers. Whether your giftee is just beginning to explore preparing tea in more traditional vessels, or they're already well on their way to a collection of beautiful pots and teawares, this set will make an excellent addition to their tea shelf.
Available from Rishi Tea for $39.95.