From Mint Field to Teacup
Posted on July 25 2020
The most flavorful, fragrant, and potent mint in the world grows right in our own Pacific Northwest backyard. We were the first to use this prized peppermint for teamaking over 40 years ago.
We Were Mint to Be
We like to stay humble here at Stash, but if you’re looking to send a thank you note to the company that is responsible for bringing mint tea to the U.S., our address can be found on our contact page. “Way back” in the 1970s, mint tea was not really “a thing” here in the States. But along came two hippies in search of tea euphoria. These hippies founded Stash and started on a journey to use mint “in” what would become some of the most popular flavors of tea today. That’s when the hunt for mint plant farmers led them to nearby Central Oregon.
Regardless of brand, chances are that if you enjoyed PNW-grown peppermint tea during those years, the mint came through our doors at some point.
Mint farmers have been thriving in the PNW for many years, but most of their herbs were used for creating products like essential oils, toothpaste, and other household items, but not for tea. When Stash founders approached the farmers, together they saw that some changes would have to be made to ensure that the mint grown was of the best possible quality specifically for brewing a cup of fresh mint tea. They worked closely with farmers to adjust how peppermint and spearmint were grown, harvested, and dried. And after a little (okay, a lot) of elbow grease, our PNW mints are known as some of the best in the world.
So Stash started producing these minty teas that quickly became fiercely sought after. Yes... it was mint to be *ba dum tish*. As popularity grew, other tea companies were also blown away by the delicious flavor, and got excited about the blends they could create with such outstanding ingredients. We offered some encourage-mint (we had to) by becoming the distributors for other tea makers, too.
Back then, our production center was in the Pearl District of Portland. After we spent some time there, it was dubbed the Mint District, all thanks to the minty fresh scent that wafted through the streets from the thousands of pounds of mint that we processed. Regardless of brand, chances are that if you enjoyed PNW-grown peppermint tea during those years, the mint came through our doors at some point.
Decades later, we still purchase mint from our original partners, along with several other suppliers throughout Oregon and Washington. We have gotten even more specific about consistency, freshness, and peak flavor, and are united by the simple purpose of making great quality, flavorful, and accessible teas using the best all-natural ingredients. Despite humble beginnings, these Pacific Northwest farmers now produce 90% of the country’s peppermint.
Fresh off the Fields: Growing Mint in the Pacific Northwest
So what does make our mint the best mint around? A number of factors like:
- excellent soil conditions
- fertile growing region
- hot days during the growing season
- plant maturity and weather conditions during harvest
Shout out to our friends, the producers who grow mint in the PNW, where perfect conditions like the above can be found. It’s thanks to these farmers that we’re able to offer the freshest and most flavorful mint teas.
Making Fresh Mint Tea Your Best-tea
When it comes to making hands down the best herbal tea, we don’t mess around! Our supplier tastes every sample from each field in order to select a flavor that reflects our particular standard. From there, we compare these crops to our own criteria and perform physical testing to make sure the cut and moisture levels are acceptable. The mint that ends up in your teacup is not there by mistake. Just like those two hippies who founded Stash, our mint ingredients have been on their own journey. It has passed inspections and rigorous reviews to guarantee that your Stash mint teas allow you to reach your own tea euphoria.
Want to try some Pacific Northwest mint in your tea? Check out these flavors: