Tea Personalities

GJTea Pioneer Members: Xenia Blanco

My name is Xenia Blanco, I am from Spain originally, Glasgow, Berlin and Munich, are among of the destinations I have lived in before I relocated to Gothenburg, Sweden, where I currently live.

I joined the Global Japanese Tea Association as a Tea Fellow member at the end of last year and I couldn’t be happier. I have made some meaningful connections through the Association. It a fun way to keep in touch with Wazuka and also to be up to date on everything tea related that takes place over there. Wazuka feels like a second home for me.

First time I visited Wazuka, was in 2017. I visited the tea fields and I fell in love with it immediately. It is such a pretty place and so full of character… In 2018, I took part in the Japanese Tea Master Course at Obubu (now organized by the Global Japanese Tea Association), since I had finally made the decision to take the plunge and to open my very own tea business specialised in Japanese teas. But before that happened, I wanted to be
prepared for it. Even though I have always drank a large amount of tea and I knew quite a lot about Japanese teas, already it felt like it wasn’t enough.

During the Tea Master Course, another opportunity crossed my path, the Japan Tea Export Council Tea Study Trip. So I applied to it and got invited. Hadn’t I attended the Tea Master Course, I might not have found out about this superb opportunity.

2018 was a great year for me, I had the chance to travel to my favourite place twice and both times was to take part in amazing Japanese tea experiences. If you are longing for Japanese Teas I would recommend you to enrol in the Tea Master Course, you won’t regret it!

Tea has been one of my passions since an early age. Japan, food and photography are the other three. My goal is to combine the four in order to make my way of living out of them. I specially want to promote Japanese teas as a healthier alternative to many sugar & carb loaded drinks out there. But not only that, I want to promote Japanese tea as an ingredient to be used in multiple ways within the kitchen.

Beyond tea being a super versatile ingredient, there is also the fact that is a zero waste element. Tea leaves can be used to brew tea and then to fertilise the soil, to eat in a salad or to prepare a vinaigrette for instance.

After long months of dealing with bureaucracy, The Japanese Tea Hub, my sole proprietorship company, was up and running. The idea was starting very small, then scale accordingly. My mission is not only to sell tea, but rather to educate people on Japanese teas. I provide a very close and personal service, I like my customers to feel taken care of.

Just recently, I applied to join the Japanese Food Supporter Program, which recognizes those companies that trade with authentic Japanese products abroad. The Japanese Tea Hub got accepted so I am over the moon!

If you want to keep in touch with me, all my tea related articles can be found every Monday in my site blog, where I talk about everything Japanese tea, from cold brews to organic regulations, to different types of bamboo used to make tea utensils. If you want to find out more about my tea and food daily pairings visit my Instagram account. And if you are in Sweden, my Facebook page is the place you will find information about upcoming events.

I hope to hear from you soon! Enjoy your Japanese Tea Journey! Welcome!

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