During the hustle and bustle this time of year, there’s nothing I like more than taking a break between wrapping holiday gifts to enjoy a cup of tea. Today, I’m bearing gifts for you featuring Twinings: an inside look at the historic brand’s relationship with Disney, where to check off your list for last-minute Christmas gifts, an indulgent recipe perfect for those entertaining this holiday, and a special interview with Stephen Twining. So, grab a cuppa of your favorite blend and read on!
Disney has a long-standing relationship with Twinings of London that’s steeped in collaboration. Products of the historical tea brand have been featured in the Tea Caddy since the location opened at EPCOT in 1982. Now, guests can find a variety of Twinings tea in more than 80 food and beverage locations across Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort, in addition to in resort rooms (fun fact: Green Tea and English Breakfast blends are the most popular) and onboard Disney Cruise Line. Those interested in an elevated tea experience can find special loose-leaf tea by Twinings – shipped directly from Europe – in most signature dining locations.
Explore a bevy of fun Twinings products – including more than 50 blends of delightful teas! – at one of my favorite places: the Tea Caddy, located in the World Showcase UK Pavilion at EPCOT. During this time of year, I like to take a peek at the location’s adorable window decorations before picking up Christmas gifts for family members, friends, co-workers and holiday party hosts. There are so many options here, with something to satisfy anyone’s palate!
A Cold Infuse Starter Kit is a great gift for family members on the go who would like to liven up the taste of water with fun fruit flavors. Or, for the tea aficionado in your life, Classics Collection Gift Box features a hand-selected assortment of Black, Green and Herbal teas! For those like me who have a New Year’s resolution to focus on wellness, there are a wide variety of teas with probiotics, ginseng, or vitamins to help support body and mind. And of course, there are last-minute stocking stuffers such as the limited-edition Christmas Tea blend (which is the Tea Caddy’s number-one seller of Twinings tea year-round!) that combines the finest Black teas with the flavors of cinnamon and clove.
If you’re visiting the park during this year’s EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays presented by AdventHealth, be sure to swing by the Holiday Sweets & Treats Holiday Kitchen located near Port of Entry. I always love seeing what Twinings offers at the various EPCOT festivals, and this year you can find the indulgent Chocolate Peppermint Shake featuring Twinings Peppermint Cheer. Here is the recipe for those interested in making this sweet treat at home!
Chocolate Peppermint Shake featuring Twinings Peppermint Cheer Tea
- 3 oz boiled water
- 2 Twinings Peppermint Cheer Tea bags
- 16 oz chocolate ice cream
- 1 tbsp candy cane bits
- Pour freshly boiled water into a heat proof container.
- Open tea envelopes and remove tea bags from packets. Steep the two tea bags for three minutes or until desired strength; remove tea bags and discard. Chill tea.
- In a blender, add ice cream and chilled tea and blend until smooth and creamy.
For an adult twist: Add three ounces of whipped cream vodka into the blended mixture.
- Pour into glasses and top with candy cane bits.
Always use caution when handling sharp objects and hot contents. Please supervise children who are helping or nearby.
And last but not least, I had the honor of chatting with Stephen Twining, the tenth-generation member of the famous tea family who serves as Director of Corporate Relations for Twinings. He shared updates on his favorite products at the Tea Caddy, what he recommends to a first-time tea drinker, and how one of his ancestors shared a cup of tea with a very important man in history!
What do you think
Disney Parks guests would be surprised to know about Twinings?
I think it would surprise guests to learn that one of the members of the fourth generation of the Twinings Family met General/President Washington and his wife and was lucky enough to have tea with them both in their home!
There are many reasons people love tea: from the calming effects to the extra boost of energy, to the moments shared while drinking it. What is your favorite thing about tea?
To me, tea is a really sociable drink, and I love having a cup or pot of tea with family and friends. Somehow having a cup of tea is very relaxing and good conversation always flows.
What has it been
like to collaborate with Walt Disney World Resort throughout the various EPCOT
It is always a pleasure to visit any Disney venue, be it a resort or one of the parks – and in particular, EPCOT. I really enjoy engaging with the guests, many of whom are interested in tea, and hopefully being able to tell them one or two things to add to their knowledge.
What is your favorite product currently available at the Tea Caddy?
Where to start! I am a huge fan of the Discovery teas, only available at Epcot. These large leaf teas are in a bigger tea bag – which means you’ll experience a more subtle and delicate cup of tea. My favorites are the Tippy Golden English Breakfast and the Exotic Mango and Ginger Green Tea. Another item I love is Cold Infuse, which is ideal when you’re out and about because it easily drops right into a bottle of water. I am also excited by the new arrivals of delicious super blends; they taste great and have enhanced benefits with special ingredients that support your energy, sleep, heart, and immunity. Finally, I am a big believer in different teas at different times of day, so getting one of the really lovely one-slot tea chests and filling it with your choice of ten different teabags has to be on my list!
products do you recommend to first-time tea drinkers?
I think I would ask the guest what flavors they like, and then recommend an herbal or fruit tea, which I call infusions, as they do not contain any of the tea plant. This way I can match the guest to something they will enjoy with the added benefit of being naturally caffeine free.
Do you have a favorite blend?
While this is your shortest question, it is also the biggest one! I like different teas at different times of day, starting with either English or Irish Breakfast, followed by Ceylon Orange Pekoe, Darjeeling, before reaching lunch when it has to be Earl or Lady Grey for me. The afternoon choice is very influenced by the weather. So, as I chat with you on this chilly English afternoon, my thoughts turn to a Chai Latte as it’s very easy to prepare and is a wonderful warming drink with the rich texture of the frothy milk as well as lovely spices to warm you from the inside out. Later this afternoon, I will have a refreshing Green tea, and then enjoy a Peppermint or Butter Mint after supper this evening. The last two are part of our Infusion range – they’re naturally free from caffeine, and I will therefore sleep well!
Now I want to know, what’s your favorite blend? (For those wondering, mine’s Lemon & Ginger with a generous spoonful of honey!) Leave your blend of choice in the comments, along with a picture of you enjoying the Chocolate Peppermint Shake featuring Twinings Peppermint Cheer Tea – either at home or while visiting the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays presented by AdventHealth. Cheers!
Earl Gray and Breakfast Blend. I also like to try any new blend I see.
The best hot tea is Berry Blush Infusion, for Iced it is Summer Berry Green Tea. Berry Blush sells out often. I wish Twinning sold it other places, but I will just suffer thru and buy it in Epcot!