Connect with Friends: 3 Teas for Conversation

Few things are more rewarding than a passionate conversation with a friend over a warm cup of tea. In fact, to Epicurus, Greek philosopher and founder of Epicureanism, all one needed in life was good food, friends, and thought. To us, it's no coincidence that an afternoon with tea often entails all three.

But let's take a deeper look into this.

On the face, the general philosophy holds true: a satisfied stomach is often a prerequisite to a happy mind; we oft seek companionship and the confidence we feel when the people around us sincerely support our dreams; and, finally, in the same way medicine heals the body, thought heals the mind. It's here we find that in addition to the arguably more basic need of food, connection with our loved ones is one of the most valued currencies – it's a source of both friends and thought, the two other ingredients in a happy Epicurean life.

In yoga, we find a similar idea in the concept of connection. In the same way one may seek the companionship of others, yoga inspires us to see the interconnectedness of our world. It's a stepping stone to understanding our true connection to everyone and everything, a thought that provides a foundational source for love of positivity (that same love one feels when with good friends).

The Power of Friendship

The home of friendship is incredibly unique – it's a place where we feel comfortable showing our flaws and shortcomings, free from the ever common plight of social anxiety and 'worry of judgement.' It's a place where you can poke fun, be yourself, and truly say what's on your mind. A good conversation with friends may not always be the most structured, use the finest words, or answer the biggest questions of life, but they rarely cease to bring a smile to your face.

If the anecdotal benefits of spending time with friends isn't enough, rest assured that science backs the claim that there's power in friendship. That's right, research points to healthy friendships as an indicator of better learningreduced stress, and even improved health and longevity. Cultivating healthy, meaningful relationships are as physically good for you as they are mentally.

All things considered, it's clear why we feel that warm feeling when connecting with friends. Think about it – how often do you think to yourself, "I need to spend some time with my friends!"? It's because your body and mind recognize these both tangible and intangible benefits. Connection begets friendship, friendship begets joy, and joy begets a happy life.

3 Brews to Inspire Conversation

Your choice of tea is a unique starting point for connecting with friends. So many varieties and tastes exist for the modern tea drinker – from the light honeysuckle of the finest white teas, to the bold and vegetal green teas, to the smokey, full-bodied roastiness of the darkest blends and blacks. Truth is, any brew will do, but we do have some favorites we love to share. Chosen for their beloved flavors and rich history (perfect for a starter conversation!), we encourage you to try a pot for your next afternoon with friends (suggestions come complete with brewing tips and histories perfect for sparking the discussion!)

  • Genmaicha: A classic Japanese green tea, made with toasted rice for a uniquely earthy, nutty aroma and smooth taste. Originally from Shizuoka, Japan, meant to stretch the short supply of green tea, Genmaicha has become a classic twist on an age old favorite
    • Brewing Temp: 190º
    • Brewing Time: 1-3 Minutes
    • Dry Leaves: Broad, yellowish Bancha, toasted rice. Varies.
    • Aromas: Subtle green notes, earthy, nutty, rounded with a note of toasted rice
  • Bai Mu Dan: Also known as White Peony due to the aroma, Bai Mu Dan is one of the most popular white teas. With a subtle mixture of tips and whole leaves, it bridges the gap between white and green teas, giving a true best of both worlds tasting experience.
    • Brewing Temp: 205º-212ºF
    • Brewing Time: 4-5 Minutes
    • Dry Leaves: Silver-green tips and forest green leaves (look for tea with more tips with greener leaves)
    • Aromas: Light vegetal, mild peony, floral
  • Lapsang SouchongA captivating smoky flavor, known to be remarkably powerful, yet lovely and sweet. The medium heavy body is complemented with smoked aromas of pine and dark fruit with a long finish. Lapsang Souchang is among the most beloved black teas from China, and has been sold in the United States for over two hundred years.
    • Brewing Temp: 205º-212ºF
    • Brewing Time: 4-5 Minutes
    • Dry Leaves: Small, dull, jet black
    • Aromas: Pine & hardwood smoked, hints of orange and cloves, along with fruit and spice. Some note a 'meatier' smell with smokier varieties, almost bacony.

Connecting for Health

So make that phone call to the besties, set it up spontaneously or set a date, and make time for some connecting with friends over a new pot of tea. Make it a regular thing, tasting a new tea with each connection. And remember, with each hour you spend genuinely connecting, the close you're coming to a place of health and balance!

(Curious about Epicurus? We encourage you to brew a cup of tea and enjoy a read!)