Hoogly Blogs

Serving a Winning Tea!

Serving a Winning Tea!

Disaster! Cue the violins! Throw the tennis racket against the wall in dismay! Our tennis hero Andy Murray has pulled out of Wimbledon 2018, citing that it was ‘too soon’ to push himself through the gruelling best-of-five set matches. It’s a very disappointing moment for all those who remember the sensational drama and history-making tournament of 2013 when Murray carried a nation on his back, playing with power, touch, courage and resilience to overcome Novak Djokovic in straight sets, ending Britain’s 77 year wait for a Wimbledon champion. Who could forget the screams of the crowd as Murray punched the air? The look of acute joy and relief on his face. His mother’s tears. Andy’s emotional dash into the crowd to celebrate with those who had guided him through his journey. And, of course, holding the beautiful trophy aloft, eliciting more euphoria from the cheering spectators.

But this year, we won’t have a repeat. Or will we? As Murray has been side-lined with injury, he has been replaced as the British number one by Yorkshireman Kyle Edmund, who recently beat Murray at Eastbourne. Edmund has had a breakthrough year, surging into the world’s top 20 after cracking the semi-finals of the Australian Open. Can we dare to dream again? The world number 18 has only ever won one main-draw match at SW19, but who’s to say that something unlikely can’t happen again on grass? We’re buzzing, too, about the prospects of national hero Johanna Konta, who produced sustained moments of magic and grit to reach last year’s Wimbledon semi-final, allowing her to climb to fourth in the women’s rankings. With legend Serena Williams returning after giving birth to her child, the path to victory for Konta looks tricky (Serena has not lost a Wimbledon singles match since 2014) but with enough self-belief and support from an phenomenal local crowd, Johanna has got all the tools she needs to take those final steps to glory!

So, with all this excitement, drama and tension during the tournament, how will you stay chilled? The answer, of course, is Hoogly Teas! With all the indulgent glamour of strawberries and cream, our beautiful brews are the ideal way to bring a bit of mindfulness into your viewing routine, building on the Danish ethos of Hygge, which teaches us to be calm, cosy and focus on the things that make us happy in life.

Serve up an elegant treat for the whole family with Jasmine Dawn green tea—a sumptuous combination of jasmine, vanilla and rose that will tantalise your senses and keep you coming back for more! If you want to serve up a surprising ace, why not try Marzipan Rooibos? This delicious herbal blend is pure liquid luxury, suffused with the rich flavour of Marzipan, transforming your five-minute break into a tranquil field of harmony!

For those who enjoy the traditional playing colours of Wimbledon, why not celebrate this year’s tournament with Sparkling White tea? This is a truly refreshing and refined Chinese brew, supplemented with invigorating flowers and fruit pieces that have all the poise and balance of a perfectly struck forehand winner down the line.

If this year’s tournament thrills and inspires you, why not get out and try tennis for yourself? There’s nothing more Hoogly than keeping your body and mind in good shape by having fun with sports, so pick up a racket, get yourself down to a court and get serving! This author played for the first time ever on holiday in May, and despite having the ideal physique and range for tennis, I was truly awful…but after a while I began to pick it up the basics and I had a wonderful time trying. And, best of all, all that running around made some more room for hotel puddings—even more Hoogly!

So, whether you’re heading to SW19 or sitting at home in front of the TV, make sure you sit back, relax and pour yourself some Danish delight to bring home the glory for Britain!

 Written by Chris Bedford,

www.hooglytea.com

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Let's all have an ice cup of tea...

Let's all have an ice cup of tea...

Can you believe it’s nearly July?! The summer is hurtling past, full of sunshine, laughter and fun. For Hygge fans, this is a wonderful time of year—an opportunity to experience all that the outside world has to offer, discovering new places to walk, cycle or drive, spending time together with loved ones as the long days stretch into long evenings. There is really no limit to the benefits of stepping out into nature, breathing in the fresh air of a green space, meeting new people and animals, and strengthening bonds between friends and family as you explore the wilderness that lies beyond your back yard.

Hygge veterans will know that once you’ve found the experiences and activities that bring comfort and happiness to your life, the real skill is to actively focus on these joyful treats, and ensure that you continue to make time for them in your ever-busier schedule. Just as the Danes guarantee that they carve out time in winter to get all cosy, warm and snuggly with their low-glow houses and fluffy socks—in summer they insist on hunting down sunlight and fresh air as if their lives depended on it, knowing full-well that the exercise, social interaction and absorbing adventure is as healing and mindful as pretty much any therapy or drug. Oh, and don’t forget those indulgent feasts on the barbecue—the hazy, mild summer evenings were made for burgers, sausages, chicken-on-a-stick and chit-chat about nothing-in-particular.

But what do you do when you need to wind down and get refreshed after your big day out? At this time of year, with the sun baking down and temperatures soaring into the silly numbers, you have to make sure you stay hydrated and cool where possible. Drinking enough water is vitally important for your mental and physical health, but once you’ve got that covered, it’s time to discover some new and delicious ways to chill! Of course, no sensible blog about summer fun would be complete without a mention of the age-old sugary delight of ice cream—but we at Hoogly would like to introduce you to our own cooling summer sensation—iced lollies and iced tea!

Using our eclectic and delicious, Hygge-inspired brews, you can create a fun, frosty and flavoursome treat that will keep you refreshed and calm on the hottest of days!

For a popsicle that will knock your socks off…try brewing two Spiced Orange herbal infusion tea bags for twice as long as usual…then simply pour the tea into a popsicle mould and put in the freezer overnight! In the morning, you will have a zesty, fruity, mouth-wateringly sweet summer snack to recharge your batteries for the adventures ahead!

For a seductive and chilled ice tea, why not try our wonderful Rhubarb and Vanilla Green Tea? The combo of tart Rhubarb, sweet vanilla and a classic Chinese green tea creates an elegant and refreshing drink to enjoy again and again as you take a well-earned moment to yourself. To create this mindful masterpiece, simply place two teabags into a heat-proof pitcher and cover with four cups of boiling water—then leave for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the teabags, sweeten with sugar or sweetener if required, then stir in 5 or 6 cups of ice until they melt. You can always modify and customise your Hoogly Ice Tea by adding slivers of your favourite fruits and leaving them to soak in. Refrigerate the finished article and enjoy at your leisure!

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s make the most of the summer months and take advantage of the beautiful countryside and green spaces that surround us. And when you need to take a break, do it the Danish way, and have an ice cup of tea!

Written by Chris Bedford.

 www.hooglytea.com 

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Tea Lions on Our Shirt!

Tea Lions on Our Shirt!

Prepare yourselves, people—this summer, the beautiful game is back in its most beautiful incarnation—the fantastic festival of football that is the World Cup! Yes, Russia 2018 is soon upon us—can you believe it’s been four years already? Four years since England finished bottom of their group after defeats to Italy and Uruguay. Four years since we last huddled in front of the television with a knotted mix of optimism and anxiety in our bellies. And two years since we were knocked out of another major tournament by Iceland…population 334, 252. Urgh, I thought I’d buried that memory…

Still, it’s not good to dwell on the past. Because quite frankly there’s a lot of dwelling to be done. We were last victorious in 1966, of course, and it hasn’t looked much like changing, despite a rousing semi-final appearance in 1990, complete with Lineker’s heroics and Gazza’s tears. This year we approach the tournament with a little less buzz, a little less chest-thumping belief. We’ve been humbled before—oh, how we’ve been humbled—and now England march to Russia not under the banner of potential favourites, but as maverick outsiders, a team of mostly young and upcoming starlets, many of which have never played tournament football. We don’t know what to expect from this squad, but we do know that youth and inexperience can often go hand-in-hand with courageous abandon, burning enthusiasm, and bags and bags of energy and pace! With the likes of Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lindgard, Deli Ali and Harry Kane, we have a core of young players who can compete with and scare any and all opposition. Personally, I’m betting on a semi-final place at least. But, of course, I say that every year…

But what makes a World Cup winning team? Most footy fans will tell you the same thing: it’s about the perfect balance of flair, technical ability, strength in defence and a potent goal threat. Well, and a bit of luck, of course. England’s ’66 team has these qualities in abundance: Gordon Banks in goal, athletic and graceful. Bobby Moore, elegant and solid at the back. Bobby Charlton, a goal machine and driving force from midfield. And Geoff Hurst—hattrick hero in the final—a constant threat to the opposition’s goal. It’s the same for all the great teams. Brazil in 1970, Germany in 1990, Spain in 2010. A blend of silky and smooth with rough and ready, devastating pace with patience and guile, mouth-watering skill with savvy experience. 

And speaking of perfect balances…Hoogly Tea is the ideal accompaniment to your 2018 World Cup matchday, a winning combination of classic and comforting brews, with exotic and undiscovered tastes from around the world!

Here’s a brief rundown of our squad for 2018: For traditionalists, we have delicious English Breakfast and Earl Grey teas—our relaxing riffs on cherished favourites—the perfect beginning, middle or end to any day! For those seeking a little bit of decadence to celebrate a victory or mitigate against defeat, then why not try chocolate brownie black tea, a rich and indulgent brew that caters to your naughty side! For those seeking something to broaden their tea-drinking experience, why not try Danish Pastry Rooibos, which has a seductive warming chocolate and cinnamon aroma with a subtle pastry taste. Or how about Spiced Orange herbal infusion…a zesty summer taste sensation, combining fruit and mulled spices that will thrill your taste buds?!

Whoever you are supporting this summer (Hoogly founder Tina hopes it is Denmark!) make sure you flip the kettle on and calm your nerves with a mug of beautiful Hoogly Tea. If you give us a go in 2018, there is only one winner…and that’s you!

Written by Chris Bedford.

www.hooglytea.com

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GOING GREY!

GOING GREY!

The snow has finally gone and the ‘Beast from the East’ has subsided. No longer are we huddling in front of the fire, putting hot water bottles under our jumpers and tobogganing to work. Our mild, grey mornings with intermittent rain showers and sunless afternoons now appear somewhat welcome; there’s no need to hack at the car with ice picks before setting off in the morning, and no immediate threat of turning into Bambi on ice when braving the pavements. And as I write this, on a thrilling rail replacement bus service, that big orange thing in the sky has even dared to make an appearance, poking its face through a cumulus nimbus, hinting playfully at the promise of weeks to come.

All this excitement calls for a celebration. And what better way to celebrate than with a warm, delicious, cosy and Hoogly cup of tea?! This week our feature brew is Earl Grey black tea, our riff on the classic favourite, which we think you’ll go potty for. Perfect as an accompaniment for breakfast and just as good as a treat or pick-me-up throughout the day, our Earl Grey is a thrilling combination of Sri Lankan black tea and natural bergamot oil, infused with zesty lemon peel and sweet orange blossom. The seductive citrus scent is a joy for the nostrils, and the unique taste will have you racing back to the kettle for more!

The assumption is that Earl Grey is named after Charles Grey, the second Earl Grey, Prime Minister of Britain in the 1830s, who was given a diplomatic gift of tea flavoured with bergamot oil by the Chinese. There are stories—not known to be verified—about a Chinese mandarin gifting Grey the tea after one of Grey’s men rescued the mandarin’s son from drowning, but it has to be taken with a pinch of salt as Grey never set foot in China. It would be nice to think, though, that this delightful blend had such a heroic start to its glorious life in England!

Whether you’re a Prime Minister, a mandarin or simply a tea enthusiast, there are certain rules to follow if you want to make the most of your brew. Here’s our Hoogly step-by-step guide to making the perfect Earl Grey cuppa: Start with fresh, cold water—never pre-boiled water that has been left to cool and subsequently re-boiled. Next, heat the water to 208˚ Fahrenheit, or just under boiling point. Before you pour, warm the pot or mug! This is an important one: when hot water is poured into a cold environment it will cool quicker, which doesn’t allow proper and consistent steeping of the blend. Simply pour hot water in, swirl, and pour away. Finally, experiment with how long you want to steep—or brew—the tea. It’s different for different brews—and different tastes—but once you’ve found your style, you’ll soon be in Hoogly heaven!

Now you’ve got your tea, it’s time to get Hoogly. Get your friends or family over, pull on your comfiest, loungiest clothes, crack out the cakes, bakes and sweets and have a super-chilled evening of light chit-chat, board games and digital detox! This is what our company ethos Hygge is all about, and it’s the perfect way to shed your stress, ditch your dramas and unwind. And with our uniquely delicious Earl Grey blend at your side, you’ll soon be as calm, cosy and contented—just like all those delightful Danes!

 www.hooglytea.com 

Written by Chris Bedford!

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The Hunt For Hoogly!

The Hunt For Hoogly!

Believe it or not, the weather will eventually warm up and Spring can begin in earnest. One of the most highly anticipated events in the coming weeks is Easter, a time for family bonding, gift giving and relaxation.  It’s also a time to indulge in serious amounts of chocolate, as shops are stacked floor to ceiling with our favourite brands in egg form. And there is something extra exciting about finding chocolate within chocolate, with some eggs containing bonus treats!

Easter celebrations take place around the globe, but not all cultures refer to it by the same name. Early Christians knew it as Pesach, the Hebrew for Passover; and today many languages use a variation of this word: Pesach in French, Pasqua in Italian and Pask in Sweden. In Christian tradition, Easter Sunday celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his crucifixion, but the historical roots of contemporary festival practices are more widespread.

The origin of the English word is that of a pagan fertility goddess called Eostre, whose celebratory festival always took place during the Spring Equinox. Early European Christian missionaries slowly began to merge the pagan names, timings and some of its symbols into the Christian celebrations. Eostre’s symbol, in fact, was that of a hare or rabbit, thus creating one link to the Easter Bunny! Rabbits also tend to give birth in Spring, so as people saw fields overrun with baby bunnies at this time of year, it was natural to incorporate them into the celebrations, and eventually into Easter.

 And the tradition of eggs goes back even further than the time of Jesus. Many ancient cultures, including the Egyptians and Greeks, viewed the egg as a symbol of fertility and renewed life. Eggs were used in pagan rituals, hung in temples and utilised for mystical practices. As missionaries observed people hunting for eggs in Spring, they began to assign value and meaning to the eggs to describe Christ’s resurrection and renewed life. Eggs would be dyed symbolically: yellow for resurrection, red for the blood of Christ, blue for love. Children would hunt for hidden eggs, and then recount the story associated with them. 

Nowadays, Easter is big business around the world, especially in America, where spending at Easter can reach up to the tens of billions through a mixture of cards, candy and other gifts. This year, make sure you incorporate the gift of Hoogly into your celebrations! Our delicious teas are the perfect accompaniment to your relaxing, family-orientated holiday, created with the Danish concept of Hygge in mind, which focuses on being calm, cosy and enjoying life’s simple pleasures. 

And one of life’s greatest simple pleasures is flipping the kettle on and putting your feet up with a warming brew, surrounded by your favourite people. We at Hoogly can take this simple pleasure to another level with our tantalising range of tasty teas. As Easter approaches, put the stresses of the working week behind you with brews such as Cosy Chamomile, a gorgeous herbal infusion combining snuggly chamomile with lemon verbena, lime leaves and lavender, all especially chosen for their ability to soothe the body and mind. It’s a hug-in-a-mug—what are you waiting for?

If hunting for hidden eggs and other treasure is your thing, then track down and discover Sparkling White Tea!! A magical and elegant blend of Chinese White Tea, fruit pieces and flowers, this sensationally seductive brew will add a touch of glamour to your Easter break!  As with all our teas, it smells as delightful as it tastes, bringing you back again and again to experience its charms!

However you spend this Easter, we hope you feel relaxed, renewed and recharged. And don’t forget to hunt down Hoogly!

By Chris Bedford

www.hooglytea.com
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Pancakes & Tea

Pancakes & Tea

Greetings tea lovers! It’s one of the most Hoogly dates in the calendar: 
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