Indulge in Life

Musings from the co-founder of Tielka.

Tielka Travels :: Emilia's, Gympie, QLD

Rebecca Domorev - Friday, November 25, 2016

We have this little tradition when travelling from Agnes Water to Brisbane. You see, the road is far from short and sweet but excitingly long and fabulously never-ending (if your positive vibes are working on overdrive) and there are a couple of things we proactively do, knowing positivity alone is never enough to get us happily to Brisbane. Firstly we negotiate our early start. Alexei suggests 4am and I remind him gently that Emilia’s doesn’t open until 8am, so the earliest we can leave is 4:30am, but let’s be generous and give ourselves an extra half hour sleep and leave around 5am. We usually leave at 5:15am. We get on the road and drive blissfully through the winding road to Bundaberg, and being deplete of the usual entourage of cars, caravans, hippie vans, school and greyhound buses at this time, the lack of overtaking lanes ensures the start of our journey is (mostly) stress-free.

Emilia's, Gympie

We arrive at Emilia’s and oh what joy this moment brings. I have been counting down the minutes since a little past Childers and rationing my dry crackers to keep the hunger pains away while not spoiling my appetite for what Jodi will put together in the kitchen. This morning I order the special (mushrooms, eggs, sour dough bread, pesto, love, deliciousness etc) and while I’d really like a piccolo latte, I limit myself to a sip of Alexei’s knowing the next stop is our favourite coffee roastery in Noosa. Alexei's choice is scrambled eggs with salmon and the boys go for salmon on toast with poached eggs.

Tielka Specialty Fairtrade Organic loose leaf tea brewing at Emilia's, Gympie

I love Emilia’s. And not just because they serve Tielka tea (getting Tielka into Emilia’s was a top priority when we first discovered this little gem in early 2015). The moment I enter, I am transported from the somewhat mundane, not-quite-city-not-quite-country feel of Gympie to a perfectly happy little café in Italy. I always make a point of having my back to the window so I can admire the burgundy walls, metal Vespa calendars with 1960’s pinup girls, old furniture and that cake display which I am still yet to indulge in. Giovanni is the perfect host, I’m not sure if there is anyone that eats there that doesn’t know him like an already or soon-to-be long life friend. It’s about the people on both sides of the counter, and teamed up with Jodi in the kitchen, they make a formidable pair.

Emilia's, Gympie

Jodi’s breakfast special is simple but so memorable. I think it’s the Italian way, just a handful of elements, on paper so basic, but we find ourselves repeating over and over out loud “how do they make it taste so good?”. Five-year-old Paul, with surprising eloquence, explains how the salmon here is so much better than (well I won't say where on this blog)... because, well, it's easy to bite through. I look wistfully at the cake display with my already full stomach and wonder if next time I can fit something sweet in.

Emilia's Gympie

Next stop, Noosa.

Tielka Featured :: Unleashed Customer Case Study

Rebecca Domorev - Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Recently Tielka was selected and featured by inventory management program Unleashed in their video promo. This video gives a little behind-the-scenes insight into what goes on at Tielka as well as a little more about us. We’re really excited to share this with you!

Happy viewing! Please feel free to share.

Tea Lists :: From The Beginnings of Tielka

Rebecca Domorev - Monday, July 25, 2016

Tielka Fairtrade Organic Tea ListTielka Fairtrade Organic Tea List

I remember very well the first time I fell in love with tea. So well, in fact, that I can still picture with remarkable accuracy the vivid burgundy walls of the little café in Kielce, Poland where my love affair with tea first began. Wesoła Kafka was the name of the little café, a name based on Polish word-play translating to both “happy little coffee” and “happy jackdaw”. For those drawing a blank, a jackdaw is a little black bird from the crow family and while that doesn’t sound particularly appealing in English, I am assured in Polish it’s quite an endearing name.

I digress. You see, it wasn’t just the quaint burgundy walls and tiny little nooks where one could hide with a cuppa and a book of Wesoła Kafka that captured me, it was an exhaustive tea list included in the pages of their menu. The descriptions told stories simply with a brief origin label and list of ingredients. Thinking back, had that tea list not been so thoughtfully presented, I could have been won over by the common latte or flat white, but I wasn’t. In that moment tea captured my attention and it still hasn’t let go.

Tielka Fairtrade Organic Tea ListTielka Fairtrade Organic Tea List

As a result, since Tielka began gracing cafes and retailers across Australia, providing tea menus (or tea lists as we now call them) to cafes and retailers has been such a central part of Tielka tea culture. It was never just about the tea itself, even though this alone is incredible. The taste lasts a few moments, but the story, the origins, the harvest, ingredients all enrich that moment and continue to live on, which is why this is so important to me. And with our new branding refresh and introduction of new tea varieties, I am so pleased to be able to start sending out new customised tea lists to stores and cafes where Tielka is being brewed.

Indulge in Life.

Rebecca Domorev

Tielka Fairtrade Organic Tea List

Lightly Boozy Mulled Christmas Tea

Rebecca Domorev - Wednesday, November 25, 2015

I created this recipe quite by chance just last week. After watching an educational clip on wine tasting with my husband, I had a sudden urge to splurge on a few bottles of wine to teach my taste buds a thing or two about wine and an unscheduled trip to Bundaberg facilitated what I shall call an educational stop-off at the local liquor store.

For those of you who don’t know, we live in the picturesque, but somewhat remote locale of Agnes Water, QLD and while the two local bottle shops aren’t too shabby, it’s not quite the same as what the big smoke has to offer, which is located a meagre 90 minute drive away.

After choosing a selection of curious looking bottles of vino for my basket, I couldn’t help pass the section on fortified wines to add a bottle of port. And what was my logic to add port, I hear you ask? It was only $7.50 and dropped the average bottle price in my basket enough to make me feel good about my entire purchase.

That evening, on brewing some of Tielka’s limited edition Mulled Christmas Black Tea with honey, I looked wistfully at my recent wine purchase, keen to try something new, and with my tea already in front of me, I felt justified to open the port and throw in half a shot. Of course it wasn’t enough, so another half shot followed.

It was nothing short of tea-wine bliss, I tell you. I was thrown back to my travels in Poland where we often enjoyed a glass of Grzaniec (that’s Polish for hot mulled wine) during the heart of winter, but sadly could never quite reproduce the same taste back home. Alexei insisted that I write down the recipe to share with the whole tea world, so here it is. 

For your enjoyment. Indulge in Life!

Lightly Boozy Mulled Christmas Tea

Makes 2 servings (250ml)


8 grams (4 level teaspoons) Mulled Christmas Black Tea
2 shots port
2 small teaspoons honey
400ml boiling water


1. Brew Mulled Christmas Black Tea in boiling water for 3 minutes
2. Pour tea into two fancy cups
3. Add port and honey to each cup
4. Stir well
5. Enjoy!

Secret Place

Rebecca Domorev - Friday, August 28, 2015
Every morning after school drop off is my favourite time. I arrive home, make myself a cup of tea, go to our back balcony, sit under our umbrella, turn on my Spotify playlist and indulge in this life. I call it my secret place. It's my place of safety, where I can hide, where I have permission to allow my heart to feel and wait on that quiet voice that calms every storm.

After a rather tumultuous day yesterday, of a great high and low, this morning I sat again under the umbrella. The first half hour my mind was a flurry of activity, of frustration, of hurt. It clouded some of the best news I had received in quite some time. My plans to put things right, to fight back consumed my mind and I was ready to get into action. Then a little voice inside prompted me not to start work yet but make a cup of tea, sit and gently let things go.

I've been sitting here for almost two hours this morning, a little longer than normal, but that's ok. I'm now at peace and know that everything will work together for good. Those two hours are probably the most valuable time I will spend this day.

Indulge in Life.

Rebecca Domorev

Warm Winter Chai

Rebecca Domorev - Tuesday, July 21, 2015

It's feeling rather frosty here in sunny Queensland. This morning I woke up with what felt like snow biting my nose, not at all impressed my wake up call was what seemed like the next world war breaking out in the kid's bedroom. Someone stole someone's Lego and it all went downhill from there.

My trusty weather app provides no comfort or hope for warmth, proclaiming it is currently 8 degrees outside. Now for those if you in more southerly states, you may be smirking at my Queensland softness right now, so believe me it felt like -5 degrees outside. 

My morning tells me it's time to head down to the Tielka warehouse and get some business action happening but the distinct lack of heating screams "Stay away!!! For the love of your freezing toes, brew some tea, take some pretty pics, post them pics on Instagram and sit on the couch!!!". So this is my blessed attempt to make my morning productive while enjoying the heating of our blissfully warm Queenslander.

South Cloud ChaiSouth Cloud ChaiSouth Cloud ChaiSouth Cloud Chai

The productiveness of this morning's cold-avoidance comes in the form of my old time favourite chai recipe and I thus name it "Warm Winter Chai"! It's simple, delicious and naturally only tastes this good when you brew it with Tielka's South Cloud Chai. Here it is:

Warm Winter Chai 

(makes 300ml)


1 tbspn (6gm approx) South Cloud Chai
1 tspn honey
1 tiny pinch (1.5gm approx) freshly grated ginger
160ml boiling water
150ml frothed milk

1. Scoop South Cloud Chai into brewing vessel (teapot / jug with lid)
2. Add fresh ginger
3. Pour boiling water over chai, cover
4. Brew for 3-4 min
5. Heat and froth milk
6. Measure honey into serving jug
7. Strain chai brew into serving jug, mix with honey
8. Pour over frothed milk
9. Serve and enjoy!

Honey, Lemon & Fresh Mint Iced Green Tea

Rebecca Domorev - Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Homemade for me, thanks!

I’ve never been a fan of those sugary, mass produced, mass marketed bottles of iced tea that are buoyantly advertised on commercial TV with colourful dancing and an endlessly supply of energetic pizazz. 

And while I’ll gratefully accept a half-glass at a party or friend’s place, it’s really not something I hope to be served at a cafe or restaurant.

This week, while enduring what seems like the gazillionth consecutive week of Queensland’s blissful, non-stop hot summer weather, waiting impatiently for the cooler weather to really enjoy a hot cup of tea, I decided to bite the bullet and finally brew some proper iced tea, homemade style.

Some of my favourite ingredients were close at hand - Jade Mist Green Tea (of course!), fresh mint from the herb and salad farm just out of town, a zingy lemon and some locally made honey. It’s hardly surprising, really - beautiful ingredients treated with the right care will almost always produce a beautiful final product. Enjoy!

Honey, Lemon & Fresh Mint Iced Green Tea

2 teaspoons Jade Mist Green Tea
2 tablespoons honey
3 slices of lemon
200ml hot water (70 degrees)
2 sprigs of fresh mint, torn

1. Place Jade Mist Green Tea, honey, mint leaves and lemon slices in jug.
2. Add hot water (70 degrees).
3. Brew for 3 minutes (it can help to poke the lemon slices for a little extra zing). 
4. Add ice to double water quantity.
5. Allow to stand until brew is icy cold.
6. Pour through strainer into cup.
7. Serve with ice.
8. Enjoy!

Order Jade Mist Green Tea now

Is that a teabag?

Rebecca Domorev - Friday, September 05, 2014

My husband and I were recently out for lunch at one of our favourite local cafes. It was the sort of cafe that was busting with delicious local produce, beautifully made homemade cakes, Good Food Guide recommendations, coffee and of course, Tielka Fairtrade organic tea. The tables were gorgeously displayed with our new Tea Tasting Notes and I felt a surge of pride when I saw our very own tea tins displayed behind the counter.

We had not long sat down to eat when two older couples sat down in the table alongside us. No doubt escaping the cold south to soak up the Queensland sun, who could blame these cheery grey nomads, as they call them up this way?

I wasn't paying particular attention to what our grey neighbours were up to until something startled me. A moment after they were served, one of the ladies reached into her handbag, pulled out a scrunched up teabag and dropped it into the pot of plain hot water she had requested. I let out an audible gasp and immediately felt embarrassed, wondering if they had not heard me but secretly hoping they had. 

Now before I jump up on my high horse and proclaim that I have never done such a terrible unsightly thing, I must admit I have been guilty many a time of brewing Tielka tea in a cup of hot water at McDonald's (I'm not excited about paying for supermarket variety Lipton teabags when at a cafe). 

Nevertheless, it took me a moment to gather my thoughts and understand the inner turmoil I was feeling. For the last five our six years I have been dedicating my time opening up a new world of tea to everyone I meet. I have loved watching the faces of people as they have experienced Tielka specialty teas for the first time and sensing they finally understood what they have been missing all these years; that the sacred teabag is nothing more than the equivalent of a cup of instant coffee and a world of tea is yet to be experienced. And if brewing loose leaf tea at home was daunting, at the very least, people could begin to experience this in a cafe setting.

And as I sat there, I sat perplexed as to why anyone would choose, in such an environment, a little bag of floor-sweepings when they could have a gorgeous pot of handcrafted tea-bliss. Why, oh why?!

Humpf. Ah well. I promptly got over myself, left, vowed I would write about this little experience and later regretted not ordering a pot of Tielka tea for our lovely neighbour.

Next time I see someone brewing their own teabag in a cafe, I promise to put things right.

Indulge in Life!

Rebecca Domorev

TEA PAIRING: English Breakfast

Rebecca Domorev - Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fairtrade organic English Breakfast Tea

Every time I brew this beautiful breakfast blend I find myself wondering why I’m not drinking it by the bucket. And here I am once again drinking it straight out of my glass jug (one teacup is never enough!), after all a glass jug is much more fancy than a bucket and there’s no such thing as too much tea. But there’s something missing to finish off this smooth moment and my tastebuds are searching…

Tielka’s Fairtrade organic English Breakfast is quite unique – a keemun congou style black tea from the Hubei Province in China, these unique flavours can be enhanced and brought out with some clever pairing.

So what should you serve it with? 

It’s an obvious choice to serve this with any breakfast (no milk please, this one’s too delicate!), but here are a couple of other ideas you may not have considered:

Cheesecake + English Breakfast

This one is a match made in heaven, nothing can possibly go wrong. I’m itching to get into the kitchen to see what cheesecakey goodness I throw together. Again, no milk – there’s enough milky goodness in the cheesecake to balance these flavours.

Vanilla + English Breakfast

Let’s take this a step further and throw in some fresh vanilla bean. Vanilla bean cheesecake, or how about a vanilla bean crème brulee? Happy times!

What else would you like to pair? Let us know and we’ll get some ideas brewing.

Indulge in Life
Rebecca Domorev

#1 Top Café Serves Tielka Tea

Rebecca Domorev - Thursday, August 14, 2014

In 2013, voted #1 Brisbane’s Ltd Espresso + Brew Bar The World’s Top Cafe.    

Not alone in the top 100 list, #1 cafe Ltd Espresso + Bew Bar brews Tielka tea. 

Perhaps it’s because Tielka tea is becoming known as the best tea around. Perhaps it’s because specialty tea, as well as certified Fairtrade and Organic, are qualities customers want in cafes. Or perhaps, it’s because café owners are finally getting smart with their tea, they understand their tea-drinking customers desires – what tea-drinking customers desperately want the same love & care coffee customers receive every day.

To those cafes that already serve Tielka, congratulations! You’re part of a growing network of recognised cafes that is delivering what tea-drinking customers really want. And us tea-drinking customers love you!

If you have a cafe and you’re not yet serving Tielka at your cafe, take the plunge! Contact us now to find out how you can serve Tielka too.

Indulge in Life!

Rebecca Domorev

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