Saturday, March 19, 2016

My Country, 'Tis of Tea — Hawaii

Now how many of us have been to Hawaii? I have not, but I definitely think I would like to, especially after learning that tea is being grown on the slope of a volcano there …

• Here is a screen grab of the website for Big Island Tea, which is on my bucket list for any future trip to Hawaii. Click here to read more, but the bit that caught my attention was, "Big Island Tea, established in 2001, is one of Hawaii's pioneer tea gardens. Found at 3,000 feet on the NE slope of Mauna Loa volcano on a 400-year-old ash deposit, the environment is ideal for growing a premium tea." So … a trip to Hawaii. A visit to a volcano. A tea garden. Who wants to go right now? (And to see some glorious photos of their tea garden, click here.)

• I love to read about Hawaiian history. I've always had an interest in Queen Liliuokalani (I love the beautiful sound of her name), but it's another Hawaiian queen who is said to have been a tea lover. Queen Emma, above, was the queen consort of King Kamehameha IV from 1856 until his death in 1863. According to the book "Emma: Hawaii's Remarkable Queen" by George S. Kanahele, Emma was a fan of "Anglicanism, Victorian morality, the superiority of British parliamentary government to American republicanism, the English tradition of tea, and so on—she had indeed acquired an 'English lady's education.'" I think someone in Hawaii ought to create a "Queen Emma's Blend" of tea. Maybe a nice pineapple blend?

• There are names to know in the world of vintage tearooms, and one that I've come across over and over in my research through the years is the Waioli Tea Room in Honolulu, a tearoom that was operated by the Salvation Army. In an act of perfect timing if ever there was one, my friend Nancy Reppert (a Pennsylvania tearoom owner herself) added to my tearoom postcard collection just yesterday when I went to the mailbox and found she'd sent me this charming postcard from the Waioli Tea Room titled "Tea Time." I blogged about this tearoom here back in 2014. I've seen a photographic postcard of the interior many times, but I've never, ever seen this "Tea Time" postcard before. Aren't those plates and the tea tray tempting? I never made it to the Waioli Tea Room before it closed, but it lives on in postcards and, I can well imagine, in people's memories!


  1. I'd like to visit that spot, too, and that postcard is wonderful.

  2. So happy the timing was perfect - and I enjoyed 'revisiting' your post from 2014 about this tea room. Love the two different postcards from the same tea room - glad they are together! One of my most favorite memories of our trip to Hawaii, is our visit to the Mauna Kea Tea gardens. Here's a link to that blog post:

  3. I have been to Hawaii twice, but the last time I searched for tea. I did finds a lovely tea at a hotel near where we were staying on Kauai, plus a tea plantation on that island also. I contacted the tea plantation, but they said no visitors. I was sad. I do know of this tea plantation on the Big Island and it would be fun to visit for sure. Sad that tearoom is no longer open.

  4. Tea grown near a volcano sounds interesting. I hope you get to visit one day.

  5. Such interesting information on Hawaii, those photos make me want to take a 'Road Trip!'

    Funny enough, when I lived in Missouri, there were several short-term military assignments in Hawaii (mainly because there were regularly scheduled 'MAC' flights out to Hawaii, out of St. Louis on those large, C-130 planes) Several friends of mine did go on those flights and they fell in love with Hawaii. I hope to go there someday, it's on the travel list.

    Until then, I will 'travel,' through your blog, with the beautiful photos of lush vegetation and Hawaiian Royalty.
    Thanks for providing such a wonderful blog, Angela, there's always something of interest. Joanie


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