It’s all about tweaking when Nasreen blends tea

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IT’S like a chemistry experiment: tea changing from turquoise to royal blue as it brews, then turning bright pink by adding a squeeze of lemon. 

This particular blueberry and blue pea flower-infused concoction, “Tea Trick”, was created by co-owner of Adore Tea Nasreen Palekar, who admits that until a few years ago her only knowledge of tea was that it came in black and green.

Ex-teacher Nasreen and her husband Aman took over the Gold Creek teahouse in October, after buying the Adore Tea business in November 2016 and running a tearoom and retail store out of their Mitchell warehouse. 

“We are glad to be based in Gold Creek now, in a sense bringing the business back together,” says Aman.

Nasreen still blends teas at the warehouse, which she says smells so incredible from all the herbs and flowers of which she’s always inspired to try new combinations.

Her current favourite is “Canberra Breeze”, a caramel black tea with berries and rose, and Nasreen says she loves the creativity of blending.

“I mix and match, it’s like science and I love to experiment,” she says.

“It just keeps popping into my head to try mixing this with that. The colours and flavours are all natural, nothing artificial. Sometimes it fails! Some flavours don’t work with specific teas and you have to keep changing and tweaking.

“But the more you spend your time, the more ideas you get. This is where my love and knowledge of tea started and now I’m so passionate about it.” 

Tea blender Nasreen Palekar… “The colours and flavours are all natural, nothing artificial. Sometimes it fails! Some flavours don’t work with specific teas and you have to keep changing and tweaking. Photo: Holly Treadaway

This passion extends to the menu, also made by Nasreen with almost every last thing, even the butter and jam, blissfully tea-infused, she says.

“I used to always love cooking for the family. In Asian families it’s a huge thing and every weekend we’d get together and cook,” says Nasreen.

“I’d never experienced running a restaurant though. And here everything you can see is made by me, and I love doing that. People appreciate it, and I get a very content sort of feeling that what I’m doing is right.”

Nasreen says Adore Tea is very much a family business, with daughters Habiba, 19, and Amal, 15, taking photos, contributing artwork, heading up social media accounts and helping out in the teahouse and warehouse whenever they can. 

Aman and Nasreen are also planning to phase out plastic packaging in favour of paper. 

“We’re working hard to take Adore Tea to the next level, and there’s a lot happening. I’m always looking to create something new,” she says. 

“It’s not always been an easy path, but we’re not ones to give up.

“Whatever we do, it’s with passion and from the heart. And you can see that love on the plate and in our teas.”

Adore Tea Gold Creek Teahouse, Federation Square, Shop 6/18 O’Hanlon Place, Nicholls. Call 6134 6781

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Kathryn Vukovljak
Kathryn Vukovljak is a "CityNews" journalist with a particular interest in homes and gardens.

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