TEA IN NASHVILLE
(Nashville skyline on a Sunday afternoon)
After several weeks of blogging about everything under the sun but tea, I felt it was high time I devoted an entry to something Tea-related since this is really supposed to be a tea blog. I had originally intended on writing a review about an incredible book that I got for Christmas but with a weekend getaway to Nashville ahead of me last week, I decided to wait until I returned to write about a place I’ve wanted to visit for the last couple of years.
This past Saturday afternoon, accompanied by my good friend, Kimberly, I ventured to a delightful Tea Shop called World Cup of Tea. The shop is, oddly enough, in a newer shopping center but it’s apparent from the charming flagstone path which leads to the front door that one should not be put off by the modern exterior. We were greeted with flags hanging in the window; the center one being a Union Jack, the others represented China, India, and other significant tea-drinking/supplying nations. As we approached the front doors, I knew instantly that I had to learn more about the owner of this charming Tea Shop.
Twenty-five years ago Rosemary Staggs, owner of World Cup of Tea, experienced her first afternoon tea in England. As a result, she fell in love with everything tea-related. Since returning from that magical trip she embarked on her very own tea education and devoted countless hours to the study of tea. “Her accomplishments include the completion of Pearl Dexter’s Tea School and the Elmwood Inn’s How to Open A Tea Room Seminar, a level one and two certification from the Tea Association of the United States and countless other tea seminars. She has traveled to both India and China to learn firsthand about the cultivation and culture of tea. Rosemary has been published several times in Tea: A Magazine and hopes to continue her study for many more years to come. Though many may consider her knowledge of tea complete, Rosemary will always consider herself a student of tea.”(From WCT website)
The uniqueness of World Cup of Tea is that Staggs has created a global tea experience just south of Nashville, Tennessee. You begin your tea encounter at the wall of samples where each container holds a different blend. There is a lovely selection of white, black, and green teas as well as herbal infusions. The attention to detail at this shop is certainly to be commended as well. Staggs provides lovely personal touches which make this tea house warm and extremely inviting. During the week you may reserve your very own tea tasting with Rosemary but since we were there on a Saturday, we were unable to take part in that. Full afternoon teas are also available upon reservations or a box lunch tea which is what we elected to have.
(World Cup of Tea)
(The dark woods and warm golden walls of this place added a soothing serenity.)
(Kimberly, in all her maternal glow, savoring the various tea aromas at the wall of tea. )
( We elected to sit at a low Asian influenced table. The entire tea shop is designed for a relaxed intimate tea experience)
Oh, and which blends made it home with us? Kimberly chose a heavenly aromatic jasmine blend while I selected Czar’s Samovar. The Samovar is a fragrant fruity blend of rich China, Ceylon, and Nepal Black teas with sweet currants. This tea brews a deep, coppery color with a long, lingering aftertaste.
So, if you find yourself in the Nashville area, make the journey to Franklin/Cool Springs and spend an hour or two at the World Cup of Tea. It’s a must for any tea lover and a place I am certain to return to again and again.