Message in a Tea Canister

Can a gift of tea be a message?

In China, the consumption of tea can be an occasion and holds a significant space in social customs. A proffered cup of tea can be a sign of respect, thank you, or an apology.

Just like American guests bring wine to a party, Chinese people send and receive tea and prize rare teas for their quality and complex flavors. Tea infuses all aspects of Chinese culture including business, family gatherings and life events like weddings.

It is quite common to receive tea as a gift. The inspiration for this post is a tea box which I recently received from a Chinese visitor. I love the packaging so much because there is so much more care taken in the presentation and packaging of Chinese teas.

This tea is from the Shanghai Huangshan Tea Co or Xuyou Tea. The tea gift set came with two 100g canisters of tea inside.

The box is made out of painted wood. Inside, it is lined with chrysanthemum yellow fabric which cushions the two canisters inside.

The canister (based on some creative matching with the Chinese and English versions of their site) indicates that it is a Tieguanyin Tea.

This was such an elegant tea gift that I couldn’t resist posting my photos of it. I’ve tasted the tea as well and it is excellent. I’m planning to put up a detailed review soon!

What are other examples of excellent tea packaging that you’ve seen?