My name is Madelene and I am the founder of Kindred Teas. I am a full time tea lady and part time baker.
What made you decide to start Kindred Teas?
Back in 2015, I stumbled upon a video on Youtube about tea. I’d always been a tea drinker, but never knew much about how they were made. In that video, they explained how the single tea plant (Camellia Sinensis) is processed to get the 6 types of tea and my mind was blown! I had always assumed that the different tea types came from different tea plants. I started researching more about tea and realised how amazing and versatile this plant was. I then decided to start work on Kindred Teas. I took about 2 years to develop the brand and teas, and Kindred Teas was officially launched in August 2017.
How did you come up with the name “Kindred Teas”?
Personally, tea has always brings back wonderful memories of times spent with family and friends. Whenever I think of tea, I think of these memories and they always involved loved ones, hence the name Kindred Teas. Tea is as social a drink as coffee. I wanted people to start saying, “let’s grab tea” instead of “let’s grab coffee”. To me, tea is about slowing down and appreciating the moment, unlike coffee, where it feels more on the go. It’s the perfect drink to roster relationships over. I also wanted to create a brand that was suitable for gifting.
What are your sources of inspiration for your tea flavours?
The inspiration behind each tea comes from personal experiences of mine. I draw them mostly from time spent travelling to other countries, by the people, sights and smells. Behind each of our tins, you can actually find the back story of what inspired the particular tea.
Out of all the flavours in Kindred Teas, which is your favourite?
If I had to choose just one, I would say that my favourite is our Dong Ding Oolong. I could drink it every day. However, if I were to choose one to gift to others, I would choose Elder & Cream Black Tea or Maple Vanilla Green Tea as they are really unique and make excellent gifts.
What is your favourite quote on “Time”?
It comes from one of my favourite authors, Mitch Albom in the book The Time Keeper:
“There is a reason God limits our days.' 'Why?' 'To make each one precious.”
I like the reminder that time is finite, so we should do what we love and love those around us like today might be our last day on earth.
How important is Time in Tea making/brewing?
Time is extremely important in both the production and brewing of tea. Teas are harvested in particular seasons, they are dried and left to oxidise for specific amounts of time. In brewing tea, the number of minutes make a big difference in the flavour of the tea, and there could be a fine line between a good or bad brew.
What are your plans for Kindred Teas in the future?
We wish to expand the business to other countries such as the US. Our ultimate goal is to open a tea salon serving amazing teas paired with desserts.
If you were to match Claude Bernard with one of your teas, what would it be?
I would match it with our Dong Ding Oolong. Just like how Claude Bernard watches are made with precision, quality and attention to the finest details, the process of making our Dong Ding Oolong does too. Oolongs are complex teas where they are only partially oxidised, which means a lot of care has to go into the production of this particular type of tea. Dong Ding Oolong is also a classic tea, which I feel reflects Claude Bernard’s look.