Pyramid Tea Bombai Chai Black

Bentley's Pyramid Tea Bombai Chai Black

I was in Ventura, CA last week with my best friend helping her with different errands. We went into Tuesday Mornings to get a few things and their tea rack caught my eye.  I saw a selection of Bentley’s teas and selected the Pyramid Tea: Bombay Chai Black. I had heard of Bentley’s before and quickly in-store did a Google search to find some reviews. All were pretty decent but none specifically reviewed the Bombay Chai. It was only $5.49 for a 16 tea sachets so I thought why not give it a try. Tea like this usually would cost $12- $15+ a tin.

Quick Description:

“Bentley’s Tea is proud to offer loose tea in pyramid silken sachets, the finest method of brewing a single cup of loose leaf. We only use premium estate grown tea, hand plucked using ancient methods that are thought to be the finest in the world…”


1 bag per cup/ water temp: 195 deg/ 3 min steeping time


Presentation: Very nice presentation to make a fantastic gift. The loose leaf is really surrounded by authentic silk which adds a really nice touch and acts as a great filter.

Content: The Bentley tin comes with sixteen silk sachets, however it seems there is roughly about a teaspoon of loose leaf in each one. For chai standards, this is definitely not sufficient – especially since the tea is not very strong (see “taste” below). You can definitely visibly see the ginger, cardamon and clove traces which is nice.

Taste: I’ve tried this tea 5 times this week and must say that the taste is pretty week. Even when steeping for 3 mins + the taste does not strengthen. I like my chai really black and then add cream. The taste always felt watered down and the cardamon/ginger flavor was supressed. I was trying to find the package date on the tin but was not able to find it – so I could get a better sense how fresh the leaves were. Given if it was in Tuesday Mornings – it probably was not that fresh.


I’d have to the Bentley’s Pyramid Bombay Chai a 2.5 stars out of 5. Despite the length of exposure of the tea leaves, the quantity of loose leaf within each sachet just does not seem substantial to make a strong cup of chai. I can’t imagine the watered down taste would improve that much had the ingredients been fresher. If you are paying full price for this, I think you’ll be disappointed.


Lovejoy’s Tea Room was the second tea spot my brother and I stopped at. We loved it. Here is our review.

Our first impressions once we settled in…

Our final word on Lovejoy’s

We have to give Lovejoy a 🙂

Lovejoy’s Tea Room

1351 Church St
San Francisco, CA 94114-3924
(415) 648-5895

Samovar Tea in San Francisco

September 1, 2009

When I visited my brother in the bay area in mid August, we went to San Francisco and explored some tea spots. We decided to make a video guide for (where you can create travel guides to share with others around the world). I thought I’d share our critique 🙂

Here is when we first arrived and ordered our tea + dessert. Sorry I don’t quite know exactly what we ordered here. I’ll try to be more attentive next time 🙂

My brother started making me laugh at the end of the video…oh siblings…

Our final word on Samovar

Sorry Samovar, we have to give you a 😦 However, our opinions are based on three items we ordered on their menu so we don’t want to project this experience on everything else they have to offer. They also serve actual meals here too which we did not try. Like I said, depending on what your objective is this might be a place you want to check out.


730 Howard St
San Francisco, CA 94103-3119
(415) 227-9400
Get directions

Imen Shan, Owner

"There's a transcending level of this tea. It's a very personal, life-altering experience," Imen Shan says. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Imen Shan is SERIOUS about her tea. After reading this article I am blown away by her knowledge and almost divine allegience to tea.

One of the world’s leading experts on Chinese single-tree teas purveys her rare brews in an unlikely locale: a shop in a run-of-the-mill South Bay Mall

Read the rest of the LA times article here
Tea Habitat, 21B Peninsula Center, Palos Verdes. (310) 921-5282.

Hey Everyone in Los Angeles or surrounding areas,

This might be an exhibit of interest to all die hard tea lovers. I’m definitely going to check it out. Fowler is located in Westwood, CA and part of the UCLA community. Best of all – admission to the Fowler Museum is Free!!

Check out the Fowler Museum Website for more information on hours and location.

Steeped in History: The Art of Tea on display Aug 16–Nov 29, 2009

Hot or iced, bagged or loose, black or green—whatever form it takes, enjoying a cup of tea is an act performed at least three billion times a day the world over. Indeed, more people drink tea than any other beverage except water. Steeped in History: The Art of Tea—on display at the Fowler Museum at UCLA from Aug 16–Nov 29, 2009—is a wide-ranging survey that brings together art from three continents and many centuries to delve into the history and culture of tea.

Traveling from Asia to the West, tea has played a variety of profound roles on the world scene—as an ancient health remedy, an element of cultural practice, and source of spiritual insight. Historically it was also a catalyst for international conflicts and horrific labor conditions in various countries.

Throughout its history tea has been a prevalent theme in the visual arts—scenes of tea embellish ceramics and textiles and are the subject of paintings and drawings, and all manner of vessels have been fashioned for the preparation and presentation of tea. Steeped in History brings together rare Chinese ceramics and paintings, 18th- and 19th-century Japanese ceramics and prints, extraordinary English and Colonial American paintings, vintage photographs and historical documents, tea-serving paraphernalia and furniture from many countries, and much more —to tell the fascinating history of tea.


August 17, 2009

I’m no tea connoisseur – far from it in fact, but I know that tea has become somewhat of a ritual in my everyday life. I love it. When you’re down or had a long day, Chamomile soothes its way in. Chai is my common tea of choice for a good heart to heart with friends. PG black is the social tea and reminds me of Sri Lankan family gatherings in England and Chrysanthemum reminds me of trips to China Town with my mom. There already exists a tea that corresponds to a particular aspect of my life – that’s what I love about it.  I’ve been introduced to so many new and memorable experiences through tea.

It’s one of my life’s missions to visit the best tea shops around the world – so I thought I may as well share my experiences with my others who are interested.

Enjoy!  If you have a recommendation for where I should stop by next, let me know!