Working at the Teahouse Kuan Yin is a labor of love, and a rewarding one. We love being able to talk with customers about the teas we carry, learning from our experienced patrons as well as passing on our own knowledge. But since coming to work at the Teahouse Kuan Yin, by far one of our most rewarding experiences has been photographing teas for the store’s website. It has been a continuing challenge because many of our teas are so different from one another, each with distinct colors, textures, shapes and sizes. The challenge itself makes it a rewarding experience, which we feel has given us a deeper appreciation for the teas we serve here.

Serving tea has always been considered a special act, or a gesture if you will, because one is providing the tea drinker with a specific experience which engages the senses. That said, as servers at Teahouse Kuan Yin we often are so caught up in our work that we don’t get to take the time and really appreciate the teas for ourselves. Sure, we’ve tasted them all, but when do we really get to look at our teas? This is where the wonderful experience of photographing the teas comes in.

Take for example our Hojicha. How best to convey that toasty warmth of flavor as well as color? What about the beautiful geometry of how the pieces lie together?

Bi Lo Chun

Bi Lo Chun

Or the Bi Lo Chun. This tea is known as Green Snail Spring, and we hoped to make the photograph of this tea as expressive as its name. Its fluffiness sets it apart from other green teas, as do the elegant, chaotic curlicues, the contrast between light and dark green.








Gold Yunnan

Gold Yunnan

What about the Gold Yunnan? It is easy to steep one’s teas without looking closely at the leaves, but this tea’s golden sheen begs to be admired. The leaves are as velvet-y as the brew itself, and should not be ignored.









Jasmine Pearl

Jasmine Pearl

We especially loved the look of the Jasmine Pearls. It is a given among tea lovers that part of the pleasure of drinking Jasmine Pearl comes with watching the pearls unfurling in the water, and obviously the beautiful aroma. But after spending time trying to figure out how best to photograph this tea, we both agree that part of what makes this tea beautiful is how tightly each pearl is wound, and the stunning craftsmanship involved in such a small thing. Each pearl is unique, and bands of light green travel across them differently every time.

Organic Chrysanthemum


And my god, look at the Chrysanthemum!

Texture. Warmth. Sunshine. Need we say more?







Li Shan Mao Feng 5.8 zoom

Li Shan Mao Feng

We love the Li Shan Mao Feng:

The twists and folds of each leaf are stunning, and the contrast between dark black and amber orange is really unique.


Ti Kuan Yin Green







The Ti Kuan Yin Green:

Its color is a vibrant and complex green, you can see the way in which each leaf has been rolled. There is an acutely physical aspect to these types of oolongs, because of the rolling process.

We’ve come to find that the teas here are absolutely beautiful in addition to being delicious. All we ask is that you guys remember: look at your tea before you drink it! All of these beautiful teas can be purchased on our website, http://www.TeaHouseKuanYin.com

Tea and Love,

Lela and Tania
Lela and Tania