The Tea Enthusiast's Handbook: A Guide to the World's Best Teas
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The Tea Enthusiast's Handbook: A Guide to the World's Best Teas

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  116 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Did you know that tea is the most widely consumed beverage on the planet after water? Or that all of the world’s tea originates from only three varieties of a single plant? While a cup of tea may be a simple pleasure for most of us, there are a dizzying number of tastes from which to choose. And every tea, whether a delicately sweet green tea fr...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published March 30th 2010 by Ten Speed Press (first published 2010)
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Most pretentious sentence (that I found) in this book: "Fill your teacups only two-thirds full; leave the remaining space to collect the feelings and emotions of those who have gathered to drink tea with you."

I found this book hilarious, but also potentially useful as a reference. I'll discover if it's armed me with any useful knowledge when I finally go to a real tea shop, sometime in the near future.
Sarah Badger
Without a doubt,the most pretentious book I've ever read of the guidebook variety. I'm a little bit of a tea snob, but I get the feeling that the authors of this book would have me crucified for steeping my tea in a $15 thrift store cow-shaped teapot rather than the preferred "unglazed clay pot."
I appreciate the comprehensive nature of this guide and will refer to it when shopping and brewing tea int he future. It sort of makes me want to continue learning more about teas, so I can be equally as...more
Straightforward and factual, it wasn't terribly interesting to read front-to-back, but is helpful as a reference source while exploring the world of tea. I followed the instructions in the book and finally managed to brew a decent oolong (fussy, fussy oolongs).

This review is based on a copy I got from my library, but I think I might pick up my own copy to refer to as needed.
Dec 31, 2011 Nenna added it
Shelves: tea
Informative, but dreadfully dull.
Mary Lou Heiss is a tea retailer and has traveled the world looking for teas. Her book "The Tea Enthusiast's Handbook" is a guide to help tea lovers understand tea and its beginnings.

This book covers six classes of tea: green, yellow, white, oolong, black and Pu-erh. It talks about how to buy tea, how to steep tea and how to store tea. It is a handy book to have.

I found it a bit overwhelming being new to tea and I would of appreciated a summary or chart comparing all the teas and how long to s...more
Robin Miller
I really enjoyed this book. I love tea and while I did not take in all of the detail I was able to look more attentively and ask better questions at the next tea shops I visited.
A good resource for tea lovers. I liked how I learned about how companies and countries code their tea.
A comprehensive book on the tea. I am an avid tea lover, so I didn't learn much of new information, but it was still well written. If you are a beginner to the world of tea, this will give you an overview and more on how to enjoy the tea time from start to finish.

I gave only three stars because 1) the style of writing was too textbook-like for my taste and 2) I wanted to see more visual cues included (photos, illustrations, charts, etc.).

I thought about buying this book if I felt it was worth o...more
Lashawnda Summers
Very informative !! I feel I understand so many things about tea that I never could have imagined. It even explains what material cup to consume your tea out of
Really liked the size of the book because it made it easy to hold and read. Didn't like the tight spine binding that prevented the book from laying flat.

Very good descriptions of the different kinds of teas. I think I learned something on every page. Can't wait to try some of the tea varieties mentioned in the book that I have never had before.
Amy Thompson
This is a neat guide to 'pure' tea. It is something that I have dog-eared and will take with me shopping at a tea store. Interesting factoids and history. If you don't really care about the details - you should pass on this one. If you really want to learn about tea, then pick up a copy.
Feb 01, 2012 Jordan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: tea
This book is only for tea lovers, but it is a really reat book for people in to tea. Great descriptions and all the information about tea you'd ever want.
Wonderful book and I just happen to connect
deeply with Mary Lou's style of writing. I
will be adding this book to my home library.
Useful book. I should like to have something like this for reference at home.
I learned a lot about tea, and that's what I was hoping for!
James Parrish
A refreshing guide to all things tea.
Helpful and smart!
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“Crafting fine tea requires a highly developed sense of perception for touch, sight, and sound that no machine can replicate. And every tea—from Taiwan’s Ali Shan High Mountain gao shan oolong to a brisk and bright Ceylon black tea from the Nuwara Eliya region of Sri Lanka—tells a story in the cup about the soil and air that nurtured it and the tea-making skills that transformed and shaped it.” 0 likes
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