Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Chá's Launch Party

On evening of Saturday, February 23rd, my friend and fellow Certified Tea Sommelier, Raymonde and I joined a group of tea lovers at the Yoga Tree Midtown Studio for the launch of a new tea company called "Chá".   I was excited to see what a launch party for a tea company would be like.

Would it be like the stuff you see on ET Canada? or like those star-studded film premiere parties at TIFF?  I had no idea!...so off I followed the others into the studio, ready for anything...
The Yonge and Eglinton area yoga studio carries Herbal Infusions Tea Co.'s teas.  Herbal Infusions was featured in a previous post on a tea cocktail workshop, click here to read.  Yoga and tea, a great combo!
Ah, here we are!  Where's everyone? Are we early?  No, it says start time is 6pm on the ticket...it's almost 6:20pm now...
 This is what happens when the host runs late.  You get recruited to help set up...
  (Photo: Raymonde Drolet) 
 This is more like it, let the party begin!
Some of the yummy tea infused treats.  The matcha macarons from Ruelo Patisserie, mmm, so were the blueberry ones.  We didn't make it to the cupcakes from the Itty Bitty Bakery though.  If someone reading this was at the launch party too, please leave me a comment to tell me what kind of tastiness I missed...

Dan Johanis (one of the three founders of Chá) and friend at work mixing the tea cocktails for the crowd

Menu of the tea cocktails being served and some of the tea syrups used.  Not listed was one made with Toasted Almond tea.  I really enjoyed the lemon lavender one, it was like a fizzy lavender lemonade spiked with gin.
Tea cocktail recipes were created by Dan 

Matcha and fruit cake from Furama Cake and Desserts was delicious!
People lining up to do the quiz to find out what tea type they are. Once they know their tea personality, a box of teas fitting their profile will be sent to them each month for the duration of their subscription.

The three founders of Chá, David Zhang, Matthew Woo, and Dan Johanis (who is also the Founder of Herbal Infusions Tea Co.).  They announced that 20% of Chá's profits will be donated to a charity dedicated to bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations called Charity:Water.  A fitting charity since water is known as "the mother of tea" in ancient China, for without water, there is no tea.

A great idea with heart.  It's not only nice to see when businesses give back something to charity, but that they are being transparent, clearly stating the charitable organization and how much, so they can be accountable.
Getting close to my turn to do the quiz.  Some of the little boxes of gifts to the attendees (nice, we do get swag!)

Finally, my turn!  Wonder which cool profile I belong to...?
 The quiz
So apparently I am a Traditionalist.  (sounds kind of boring... I thought I'd be more Alchemist or Adventurist...)  Well, I do "appreciate a good cup of premium grade traditional tea"... "whatever your cup, you'll be right at home with a comfortable cup" mmhmm, okay, true.
"You would enjoy Chamomile tea", whoa, wait a minute, I don't like Chamomile...um, that can't be right, I want a redo on this quiz! 

Oh good, there's David.  Hey, David, need a word with you... 
from Chá's Facebook album
The contents of my little gift box (for the Traditionalist tea drinker). A fridge magnet, a little glass vial of English Breakfast tea, and a card describing how to steep the tea, suggested food pairing and how the tea is good for you.
This subscription box geared to your tea profile is a neat idea.  It sets them apart from some of the other monthly subscription tea companies already out there.  Especially for someone who's new to tea, who doesn't know what they'd enjoy or even where to start.  

It was a fun evening!  I'm glad I was part of a launch of a new tea company.  It was nice to catch up with a few familiar faces that were at the party too.  Congratulations and best wishes to  David, Matthew, Dan, and rest of the staff at Chá! 

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