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Quality teas that are steeped in equality

Ahista Teas are crafted by women using tealeaves from women-run farms

Ahista Tea from India, made with quality tealeaves grown by women tea farmers. The teas are crafted by women teamakers.
Ahista Tea from India, made with quality tealeaves grown by women tea farmers. The teas are crafted by women teamakers.Handout

Lush teas from India come from Ahista Tea, a company that offers single-batch classic teas and innovative blends that elevate the soothing brew. Founder Ashmit Patel moved from Toronto to India two years ago to launch the label. He named the company Ahista, which means “at a slow pace” in Hindi, he says, to bring to mind the art of slow living and savoring each moment with thoughtfulness and intention. Of course, with a cup of tea. Patel sources tealeaves directly from women-run farms in India’s smaller tea-producing regions, and women tea makers handcraft the teas. “Empowering women tea makers in India helps us bring gender equity into the tea industry,” he says. The leaves’ quality and the women’s craftsmanship reveal itself in the dozens of selections the company offers, with names like Golden Temple, black tealeaves grown high above sea level, hand-rolled and roasted to gain a sweet, malty flavor; Silver Needle, with flavors of honeysuckle; Jade Green, steamed to remove its grassy flavor, delicate and floral; and unique fruity blends with mango, orange peel, licorice, rose hips, and lavender. Many are ideal for iced drinks, like Vintage Chai, fragrant from ginger, cardamom, star anise, and other spices to create a chai latte, or the Blue City, which blends Assam, Sicilian bergamot, vanilla, and blue cornflower petals. Patel sells his teas largely to Michelin-starred restaurants and luxury boutique hotels worldwide, and in Boston, the restaurant Menton is a customer. Ahista Teas are available through ahistatea.com (15 teabags, from $6 and up; loose leaf: 50 grams, $8 to $11; 75 grams, from $4.50 to $12.50). Shipping is $8.

ANN TRIEGER KURLAND

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Ann Trieger Kurland can be reached at anntrieger@gmail.com.