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The Journey Begins with a Sip!


Stainless Steal Infuser + Double Wall Borosilicate Glass + 3 Teas!!!

Every sip of tea is a new experience waiting to be discovered. This tea set, The Journey Begins, is a great way to try some timeless teas that have created tea lovers around the world.

We really pride ourselves for sharing teas that they found inspiring. Because we hand blend and prepare all of our teas right here in Seattle, we can make teas taste fresher than you have ever tasted them before. In this starter set, you can try some of Shen Zen Tea’s re-creations of some classic teas, such as Earl Grey and Masala Chai, and even the non-blended classic Jasmine Green from Hubei, China. Even though we are always on the edge of creating or finding new teas, we are still blown away every time we take a sip of one of these timeless teas.

Click here to bring the tea starter set home or send one as a gift!

Great for a gift and comes with FREE SHIPPING!

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Home Tea Experience

We’re all about helping you discover the spirit of tea, but most public events are busy and noisy, and we have limited time for each individual.

ThumbnailHost a private Tea Experience with one of our Tea Gurus! We’ll guide you through a focused tea tasting, inform you of the latest research on tea’s healthy benefits, and demonstrate various tea brewing methods. Don’t forget, you’ll drink lots of tea!

For more information click on links below:
Home Tea Experience for 5
Home Tea Experience for 10


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Shen Zen Tea Interviewed by the Natural Choice Network

Natural Choice Network Interview

Neil, James, and Grace (James’ wife) were interviewed by the Natural Choice Network during the holidays. A huge part of our love for tea is sharing it and inspiring others. During the 30 minute interview, we were asked multiple questions ranging from how Shen Zen Tea started and what are the multitude of health benefits tea has to offer. Click here to listen to the interview!

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Health Benefits of Pu-Erh & Ginger

We are often asked if we offer any teas that aid in digestion, so here are a couple of suggestions from our menu. Since Neil and I inquisitive thinkers, we always do the research ourselves before we make any claims about our teas, especially when it comes to tea and health. Read below for a bit of science to explain why these teas are so good for your tummy!

Yunnan Puerh Ginger

African Ginger (caffeine free)



Although we have heard people tell us that ginger is good for digestion, we still went out of our way to find numerous articles reviewing studies showing how ginger benefits the digestive system. According to Dr. Tilgner in Herbal Medicine, ginger can increase the activity of digestive enzymes, increase the circulatory system, and prevent stomach ulcers. Ginger increases the secretion of bile to break down oily foods in your diet and helps to relieve flatulence, burping, and colic. Dr. Campusvej and associate researches published findings in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology showing that ginger can aid in nausea and vomiting. Other clinical studies have found the same results in humans and other animals.


Pu-erh tea is an aged tea that has been used in Chinese Traditional Medicine for over a century. Pu-erh tea has multiple health benefits including aiding digestion and weight-loss. According to multiple studies published in the North England Journal of Medicine, American Journal of Medicine, and British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, pu-erh tea leaves can lower total cholesterol and body weight. When people drink pu-erh tea, the tea slows the production of an enzyme necessary for making fat cells in the body called fatty acid synthase. This is because the tea develops natural chemicals that are not present in other teas called ephedra alkaloids and lovastatin. Lovastatin is actually concentrated and used by pharmaceutical companies to make prescription medicine to lower cholesterol.

When pu-erh is aged, it remains moist so that the microbes and break down the leaves. Every couple of years, tea masters may re-moisten the leaves and age them again, which keeps the microbes alive. Researchers believe that there are specialized microbes inside the aging pu-erh tea leaves that produce lovastatin. Interesting results published in Food Chemistry, Oncology Research, Molecular Nutrition & Food Research show evidence that drinking pu-erh tea can lower low-density lipoprotein (bad cholesterol) and increase the high-density lipoprotein (good cholesterol).

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Dreamwell Sleepy Time Tea

Dreamwell is specially formulated to help you sleep and taste great, too!



We’re proud to announce Shen Zen Tea’s new Dreamwell. This all organic, caffeine-free blend features chamomile, lavender and lemon balm for a soothing flavor plus valerian, hops, and St. John’s Wort to help induce deep and restful sleep.

Dreamwell tea is specially created to help you sleep faster and rest more deeply through the night.
My wife, Grace, a naturopathic medical student at Bastyr University, helped choose the most effective herbs. Our first draft worked almost too well… WE NEARLY FELL ASLEEP IN THE LAB! Over a few weeks of testing, we found the perfect recipe to make Dreamwell taste great while still being effective.

We hope you enjoy but please drink responsibly… make sure you’re near a bed when you drink our new Dreamwell tea! 🙂


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Farmers Markets!

We’ve been hosting a booth at various farmer’s markets all over the Seattle area! It’s hard to imagine being happier sitting in a tea shop all day. We love being out in the sun and talking to all the good folks who come out to the markets. Come by and see us!

Here is a list of farmers markets we are going to weekly:


Crossroads Farmers Market in Bellevue


Sammamish Farmers Market

Kirkland Wednesday Market


Juanita Friday Market


Redmond Saturday Market

Edmonds Saturday Market


Lake Forest Park Farmers Market

We are also considering joining the Juanita and Kirkland Farmers Markets soon. Come check us out and say hi!

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Tea & Sushi… yes, please!

(photo by J. Nichole Smith)

Shen Zen Tea is proud to have three of our teas: Wuyi Valley Oolong, Ti Guan Yin, and Snow Leopard, served at Mashiko Sushi Bar & Japanese Restaurant in West Seattle. Not only is Hajime, the owner and chef, a profoundly talented chef, he has also committed to serving only sustainable seafood. We look forward to launching a full menu of fair trade, artisan and organic teas in Hajime’s Mashiko soon.

Get 10% off your next tea purchase at Shen Zen Tea’s online store or farmer’s market stand when you bring your receipt from Mashiko, showing that you purchased a pot of our teas! To receive the benefit for online orders, please email us at This promotion is valid until the end of August 2013! So Don’t Wait!

Check out Hajime’s youtube clip on sushi & sustainability:

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Discovering Taiwan

Over the last holiday season, my wife and I travelled to Taiwan to visit our family. While we were there, I also made it a point to search for some of our most beloved teas and to source them back home directly from the Taiwanese tea farmers. As it turned out, we spent at least as much time looking for tea as we did with family. Sorry, hun!


Visiting Farmers of Shan Li Xi

One of our first stops was at a tea farmer’s shop, where the farmer grew oolong at Shan Li Xi, located in Nantou, County. We were greeted by the farmer’s wife who ran the shop, while her husband and his brother worked the farm. What struck me first was the farmer’s idea of variety. Her entire store was stocked with no other tea except for oolong! But of course, there were different cultivars of oolong, roasted at different temperatures, and grown at different elevations; so, there was plenty variety to them! We were inspired by the oolongs, even though the farmers seem to make quite a strong brew… I couldn’t wait to taste it my way!


Discovering Sun Moon Lake

Next, we journeyed to Sun Moon Lake in the heart of Nantou County. The town was built around a massive lake which seems to be fed by tributaries from the surrounding basin. In essence, Sun Moon Lake encased much of the moisture from the surrounding mist enshrouded mountains. The climate and cultivation of sweet pineapples makes for an interesting region to produce extraordinary tea! At Sun Moon Lake, we made several stops at different tea farms, and stumbled upon one small farm tucked against a hill at the west side of the lake. At this farm, we found an exceptional producer of the Ruby 18 black tea we were searching so hard for! They also had some interesting varieties of transplanted assam. In Taiwan, the assam cultivar is quite popular when grown in the Sun Moon Lake climate. They call it, “Assamu.” Of course, we had to bring it home!


The City of Ceramics

Although it was heart breaking to leave Sun Moon Lake, I was really excited to head north towards a town named Yingge (pronounced “iŋ gu̇”). I had been looking for good and affordable handmade pottery in Taiwan, and I would either find cheaply molded pieces that were also common in the US or over priced work. Yingge is known as the town of ceramics. I was so excited to meet the potters who made the pieces sold in this town. I’ve never seen a town that was so dedicated to a single craft. Store-to-store, there were no coffee or tea shops or restaurants .. only teapots and ceramics. Because we were meeting family friends for dinner, I only had one hour to to browse the stores. I ran between stores and took their business cards. At the end of the day, I packed 20 handmade teapots into my suite case! Three of which, I was very excited to have because they were high fired by masters. In Taiwan, they call it “tsou sou” which means “grass fired.” In this process, a master would fire his/her work in a heap of fire. This process takes three days, and the work must be rotated to ensure even heating. The final products are teapots with completely unique textures and shades. Because the fire controls the outcome of the glaze, it can be rather unpredictable, even for the master.