Tuesday, November 20, 2018

[Book Review] A Little Tea Book: All the Essentials from Leaf to Cup

A Little Tea Book: All the Essentials from Leaf to Cup is an absolute treat to read while sitting with a great cup of tea! A must-read for any tea lover!

I won a copy of this book in a giveaway. So thanks again to Nicole from Bloomsbury for sending a copy my way!

The book's introduction begins with:

You’re holding this book because you love tea. 
Perhaps you can’t begin your morning without 
a cup of English Breakfast. You may have a favorite 
mug. You might carry that mug to work, along with 
an assortment of teabags. 

I was already wicked excited to dive into this book, but from that passage, I knew I'd be in for a treat!

Let's dive in!

A Little Tea Book: All the Essentials from Leaf to Cup by Sebastian Beckwith and Caroline Paul, Illustrations by Wendy McNaughton

First things first, I just love the cover designed by Katya Mezhibovskaya! The entire book was designed so beautifully. Even the naked book looks lovely!

I learned so many things from this book! A few of the things that really stood out were:
  • All tea comes from just one plant: the Camellia sinensis.
  • There are only six types of tea- white, green, yellow, oolong, black, and dark. All others like chamomile aren’t tea, they’re made from other plants. 
  • A tea is defined by the variety/cultivar used and what happens to the leaf after plucking. 
  • Taste varies depending on weather, the soil, time of harvest, the part of the plant, and what happens to the harvest after it is removed from the plant, but the quality can still vary greatly. 
  • Teas can be categorized into flavor groups including; fruit, floral, marine, mineral, sweet, spice, wood, earth, and others. 
  • The debate of whether the milk goes in before or after the tea is ongoing. This author and George Orwell say after. I agree! 

This book was organized so brilliantly. There were so many wonderful sections! One of my favorites, which rather surprised me, was the “A little history” section. The information in this chapter was written so well and it was rather short and sweet, but it still packed quite the historical punch! 

I loved that the author threw in quick personal stories here and there and that there were also various drink recipes thrown in every now and again! 

The photos included were incredible! As were the illustrations! 

At the end of the book there was a glossary, more information about the photos included, recommended reading, and an index. 

My final thoughts:
I had so much fun reading this book! Of course, it also made me super thirsty! I brewed a cup of green tea, and multiple cups of loose white tea to sip on while reading, and a cup of black tea to drink while writing up my review!

I would highly recommend this book to any tea lover! It's packed with wonderfully interesting information and written in a very easy-to-read way. 

Thanks for reading!
Have you read any books about tea? I'd love to get some recommendations! 

Snag your copy here:


  1. This book looks adorable! And I agree, a good gift for a tea-lover. I also didn't know that tea came from one plant only :O

  2. This is such an adorable little book!

  3. OMG.... This book is so cute! I love tea. I drink tea rather than coffee everyday.

    Elle Inked @ Keep on Reading

    1. Same here! Coffee actually makes me sick. I wish I could drink it, but I do love my tea!!

  4. I love my tea so this would be a perfect book for me.
    I believe the milk thing started as an indicator of social class. The upper classes used fine bone china cups which could cope with hot tea being poured straight in to them. However, if you tried this with cheaper pottery then the cups would crack. Therefore the working classes would add milk first. Nowadays most crockery can cope with hot tea so it's more individual preferences :-)

    1. Hey there! Yes!! That's correct! The book mentioned that :) How crazy?!

  5. Cute book for a tea lover! :-)


  6. What a fun book, and the photographs look gorgeous!

  7. I love tea - can't say I'm a fan of tea with milk, no matter what way it goes in.

  8. I'm such a tea lover that this book sounds like so much fun to me! I think it would be cool to try some of the teas as you read about them as well ^.^

    1. Yes!! I highly recommend this one! It was so neat!!

  9. Gosh, this sounds right up my street!
    I love tea, and I love learning more about it too.
    Cora | http://www.teapartyprincess.co.uk

    1. It’s a lovely little book! I definitely recommend it!!