Last week we posted a blog to answer some of the mountains of questions we get from you guys. Although I deliberately didn’t answer any of the questions asking about our Christmas gift recommendations. I’ve left that until now, and I’m going to write a series of posts talking about my recommendations.
I know this is very different from the masses of other blogs out there trying to hawk you various kitchen and gardening gadgets on amazon but we’ve decided not to join in with that, instead, we want to introduce you to some of the amazing small and local businesses we love. We can’t offer you discounts and deals, because these guys are fighting to compete with the huge chains, so we’d rather people paid full price and supported local. So who is our first recommendation to you?
Tiree tea is the product of a friend of ours Rhoda, who has relocated back to her family croft on Tiree. Shocked the hell out of us as Rhoda is more of a techie geek than I am, and I can’t imagine what life was like for those first few weeks. However, watching her journey was a treat and you would be astounded at the work she has done to renovate the family croft and get things up and running. You can follow her adventures in small-holding through Instagram and Twitter. Or indeed the Tiree Tea website. I absolutely recommend it, the adventures of Gunna and the sheep are fantastic.
Tiree Tea is a new venture, on top of supplying veg boxes to islanders, raising a flock of Hebridean sheep and trying to train an overactive sheepdog named Gunna (who is adorable). This woman doesn’t know how to relax. At the moment there are only two tea blends, but Rhoda plans to add others if the logistics can be worked out. Bring on the Lady Grey!
I’ll let Rhoda tell you about her teas in her own words.
Crofter Breakfast Tea
Crofter Breakfast Tea was inspired by a little grey Fergie. The little grey fergie has lived on the Tiree Tea croft since she was born in 1947. She is still a working tractor. Like the Fergie, Crofter Breakfast Tea is a versatile blend equally suited to breakfast, a flask on the go or, (in true Tiree style) accompanied by a couple of biscuits after an already large meal. Leaving it in a teapot on the stove to stew for a couple of hours is traditional, but entirely optional. (This is exactly how my dad made tea when I was a kid.)
Hints of: baler-twine and marauding livestock
Tilley (Mint and Nettle Herbal Infusion)
Tilley Mint and Nettle Herbal Infusion draw its inspiration from a variety of souces! Tilley lamps once powered island homes. Now Tilley the Turbine powers community projects. A refreshing blend of peppermint, spearmint and nettle, Tilley Mint and Nettle Herbal Infusion is inspired by Tiree’s fresh breeze and the scent of wild mint as a crofter trails through a bog on the heels of a cow. The less said about nettles, the better.
Hints of: birds flying backwards and washing stuck on a fence.
As you can see, Tiree Tea involves quite a bit of humour. Something you need in spades if you live on a cold, windy island, relying on the ferry to both deliver and collect anything. So with that in mind, if you are thinking about ordering some tea as a Christmas gift, get your orders in now, the ferry really is that bad. Rhoda has asked if orders can be in before Wednesday 18th December.
Pop over to the website and have a look.