THE JOB ADVERT READ, “TRAINEE TEA TASTER WANTED – MUST BE PREPARED TO TRAVEL THE WORLD”.
We applied, we got through (somehow!) and 1 million cups later here we are. As part of that training, we each spent a year living overseas in tea producing countries. We visited tea plantations, tea factories, warehouses and ports. We bought in tea auctions, we met the tea trade and made some great friends. We learnt that wherever you go in the world, people are incredibly passionate about this amazing product. At Two Spoons, we want to showcase great tea, the passion and the stories we have accumulated along the way.
GILES OAKLEY (BIG SPOON)
"I'm Giles, otherwise known as Big Spoon. I've always loved tea, it must be the Irish roots. My favourite cuppa? I've got 3. An Assam second flush, malty and jammy (with a bacon sarnie). Masala Chai, drunk on the streets of Kolkata from a clay cup. Anything made by my kids. It doesn't taste great and comes round once in a blue moon - sorry boys - but it's made with love! I've travelled all over the world during my 25 years in tea, from Pakistan and Papua New Guinea to India and Indonesia. It's been a series of brilliant experiences, meeting passionate people involved in the production of an amazing crop. We want to share some of that knowledge and experience to champion tea for all its worth!"
SHOP GILES' FAVOURITES:
MARK LAWSON (LITTLE SPOON)
"I'm Mark, I've been involved in the tea trade for more than 30 years. I know, I know! I was weaned on sweet, milky tea by my Irish Nana just like Giles. I start the day with an English Breakfast or three (our Great Taste Award winning Bungalow Blend is a personal favourite - there's a story there!). Then I gravitate to green and oolong teas that I've been lucky enough to discover in China - they're healthy, delicious and light when brewed off the boil! I've been blessed being in tea; it's a wonderful career that has allowed me to travel and meet some amazing people along the way."