Our most basic human need, aside from food and shelter, is a feeling of connection; connection with ourselves and connection with those around us..our community. Capitalism and consumerism has taken the old adage of ‘divide and conquer’ to the extreme and fractured communities and individuals so that deep connectedness is in need of dedicated nourishment.
Tea, in some form or another, is as old as humanity. It’s so interwoven in the fabric of cultures the world over as to be virtually inseparable. A quick search online will reveal endless quotes about tea, far more than coffee it should be noted, but perhaps one that expresses the essence of tea most precisely is from Buddhist priest Eisai in the 12th century:
The moment given to mindfully boil water, measure a spoonful of tea and steep it then sit quietly alone or with a friend offers us the chance to reclaim that connection from the demands of modern life.
And so, it is the mission of Yannoko to develop lasting relationships with the committed craftspeople sustaining the traditional art of tea making during challenging times, to offer a carefully selected collection of tea from family run farms at fair prices and to encourage the growth of tea culture in the West as an antidote to our modern times.
I hope you’ll join me.
Tucked away in the woods, across the Strait of Georgia from Vancouver, on Gabriola Island is where I built my home...a sanctuary from the pressures of city life. Its from this place of calm that I began the project of Yannoko Tea.
It was twenty years ago, during a trip to Prague in the enchanting month of December when the old city is alight and the gluhwein is flowing, that I was introduced to the magic of tea at the tea shop Dobrá Čajovna. Immediately, I wished to one day open a tea shop...
Although an actual tea shop is still a ways off, if you ever find yourself on Gabriola pining for a superb cup of tea and the chance to meet a local, please do get in touch. My house is always open. Or if you simply want to say hello from afar, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.