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Tea, the new Coffee

Posted on Saturday, Dec 10th 2005

Starbucks won America’s heart over the last 15 years.

These days, however, I see a new breed of venues that catch my attention. This week, Anneke invited me to Samovar Tea Lounge @ Sanchez and 18th, in San Francisco. Great ambience, a nice selection of specialty teas from Darjeelings to Assams to Oolongs to Green Teas to Herbals … Last weekend, we stopped by at Teavana, a new Tea & Tea Accessories store at Stanford Shopping Center. Then there is on the web.

Entrepreneur Magazine recently did a story on some of the hottest business ideas for small businesses, and Tea was at the top of that list.

Incidentally, we’re spending new years in a tea estate near Darjeeling, in the Himalayan foothills this year!

Well, what are you waiting for?

Howard Schultz built his coffee empire. Tea is all yours!

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Havin been in India and Us and seen both sides, let me put my observations here:

US is a coffee nations. tea is considered more of a health drink for the health consciuos guys( just like cola is the in thing and juices are for the health conscious).

One’s day is not complete unless one guzzled up 3-4 cups of coffee per day.

In comparison, India is a TEA centric nations with coffee getting upper hand in few clusters.

So Coffee producers from India are minting more moeny in India than the tea growers and exporters as US is a difficult market to penetrate for tea players.

But things are changing in India as coffee is being pitched to the GenX( youth) by Coffee beans, BARISTA Coffee chains springing up over there

Read more here at this link

Madhu Saturday, December 10, 2005 at 12:55 PM PT

Have fun in the Christmas and New Year! Take some good pictures too. 🙂

Santanu Bhattacharya Saturday, December 10, 2005 at 1:50 PM PT


This article is about the US Market opportunity. I don’t think these concepts would necessarily work in India. And it is not at all a health-conscious positioning. It is a chic lifestyle positioning. A tiny pot of Lapsung Shuchong costs $9.00 …

You are right, though, about Barista, Nirula’s, etc. which are interesting franchise concepts for India.


Thanks. Play with Flickr when you have time … I just uploaded a bunch of travel pics to it yesterday …


Sramana Mitra Saturday, December 10, 2005 at 8:04 PM PT