Bellocq Tea Atelier, an inconspicuous jewel box tucked away into a quiet corner of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, has turned nearly a decade of sourcing and blending the finest teas and botanicals into a devoted and articulate history of tea connoisseurship. Behind the hidden storefront, single-estate teas are sold exclusively whole leaf, organic tea and herbal blends are still assembled by hand, and more recently, a collection of expertly-crafted, perfumed candles inspired by the company’s teas can be found against a backdrop of faded, aubergine walls. A serendipitous find for the earnest wanderer, this is a space that yields itself to the luxury of fine tea and an unwavering adherence to excellence.
Even before you take a sip, a cup of tea can transport you. The aroma of leaves opened and unraveled by heat can whisk you into a heady repose, olfactory memory taking you back to the lush, moss-carpeted woods of your childhood. Or perhaps the faint, briny whisper of your first sip swings you forward to a beloved seashore. Another cup, a blend of teas more exotic to you, and you find yourself someplace dizzyingly, delightfully new. It’s this sense of wonder and discovery, and the recognition of exquisite beauty in the ordinary rituals of life, that inspired the creation of Bellocq.
Their carefully selected, single-origin offerings originate from the finest estates in China, Japan, India, Nepal, Taiwan, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, and Malawi and are exclusively full leaf, almost entirely organic, and sourced from high elevation gardens. Their selections are the result of rigorous sourcing and lengthy tastings The unifying factor is exceptional quality and a beautiful flavor profile. Several months each year are still spent abroad revisiting estates, sourcing new teas, and ensuring the quality behind the tea’s cultivation and its processing. Their range doesn't include a vast selection of Darjeelings or Ceylons, but only one or two of these teas – the best available.
True to its mission, in addition to their hand-blended organic tea blends, Bellocq's line includes an exquisite collection of single-origin, pure teas, an assortment of organic herbal selections, and rare puerh. The pure teas range, at their very finest, from fragrant, delicate Anji Bai Cha to the earthy and robust 2007 Bulang Raw, Ancient Tree, a puerh sourced from deep within Yunnan Province. Meanwhile, blends like 'Le Hammeau' draw out the winsome, summery warmth of the more familiar lemon verbena, freshly torn mint, chamomile, lavender, and sage. Hardly content sourcing and blending the teas for an interested public, Bellocq also offers extensive help in properly brewing, storing, and pairing each of their teas, for full effect. Bellocq’s teas are nuanced, evocative, and surprising, and they are steeped in tradition that dates back millennia, often originating from families that have cultivated tea for hundreds of generations. Tea’s enormous history, fostered by attentive sourcing and delicate cultivation, processing, and blending, has established for its drinkers the kind of connoisseurship to which wines, olive oils, and other artisan products have always been privy. For Bellocq, discovering and sharing the world of tea has been a delicious, and decidedly modern, adventure.
Tea has always been about ritual and the sense of well-being that accompanies it, and this luxury is what Bellocq strives to provide. For Bellocq, not even so much the luxury of the finest goods, though quality is the strongest motivation behind the tea, but the luxury of time and space created in the meditative enjoyment of a cup of tea is of primary importance. The personal sanctuaries we devise for ourselves are the end goals of the company’s vision. Co-founder, Heidi Johannsen Stewart muses, "I read that tea is, essentially, a journey of water. I feel that’s it’s a wonderfully poetic sentiment that here we are, first in London, now in New York, on this great journey with tea.”
Bellocq’s teas and candles can now be found in the finest shops, hotels, restaurants, and residences throughout the world. For press inquiries, imagery, credit information, please contact: Bellocq Tea Atelier or firstname.lastname@example.org.