FEATURED TEA SHOP: The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company

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Photo credit: Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Facebook

Owner/manager: Richard Smith

Shop location: Online shop and factory shop in Pluckley

Social media: Facebook and Twitter (@kentteacoffee)

Recently I stumbled upon The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company while Google searching online tea shops that carry a good selection of Assam teas. I was so intrigued by their selection of Assams, as well as their numerous other teas, that I had to put in an order.

What’s great about The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company:

  • They sell smaller packs of tea (50 grams and under) which makes trying numerous teas easier. I am really hesitant at times to try more expensive or unknown teas if I have to buy 100 grams or more.
  • Teas come in airtight packs so you can order as much as you like without worrying that the tea will be exposed to air and light. I ordered ten packs of tea and love knowing that they will stay fresh for over a year.
  • 10% discount for first-time customers. Who wouldn’t like this?
  • They have a wide selection of black, green, oolong, white, herbal and rooibos teas. Coffee lovers will also be impressed with their extensive coffee selection.
  • Extremely good value for money. I think they have some of the best prices on tea that I’ve seen.
  • I received my online order within five days.

Things to think about:

  • Unlike many other online tea shops, The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company does not offer free postage on large orders within the UK (for example: free shipping on orders more than £30 or £40). They do, however, have very reasonable postage rates. I paid £2.65 for 575 grams of tea sent through Royal Mail 1st class.
  • My order did not include small samples of tea to try. Perhaps this marketing strategy is more common with places I dealt with in the past. However, The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company does entice customers to write reviews about their teas by having a draw each month that gives three lucky customers a £20.00 voucher.
  • When I stumbled upon The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company, it was really by accident. I feel like I have a pretty good knowledge of tea shops in the UK, which I have amassed through social media, but The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company are not big in Twitter or Facebook land (I know this is important to some). Don’t let this stop you from giving them a try.

My conclusions:

The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company is definitely worth a try. Thus far I’ve been blown away by the teas I ordered from them. They offer great value for money. If I’m ever in Pluckley, I would love to stop by and check out their shop.

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About teaxplorer

I grew up in the Midwest of the US and was introduced to tea at a very young age - unsweetened iced tea, that is! It was not until my early 20s, when I was seeking a lighter alternative to coffee, that I took tea drinking to a new level. I still remember my mother suggesting that I try putting milk in a cup of black tea (something that actually sounded a bit repulsive at the time, but I gave it a go). I quickly became tired of supermarket tea and started ordering teas from shops and companies all over the US. Throughout my 20s and now into my early 30s, pursuits in higher education studies, work opportunities and marriage have given me opportunities to live in the UK, Canada and Germany and travel around the world, which has sparked an even greater interest in tea and the culture of tea. This blog is my outlet to discuss my love of tea and show off some of my photos. All images and opinions on this blog are my own, unless stated otherwise. I retain copyright on all photographs, but please do not hesitate to contact me at teaxplorer@gmail.com if you wish to reproduce any of my images. Likewise, if you would like me to review and photograph any teas for you, please get in touch. I would be happy to hear from you. Thank you for stopping by my blog, and I hope you return many times! Happy drinking! Drew B (@teaxplorer)
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3 Responses to FEATURED TEA SHOP: The Kent & Sussex Tea and Coffee Company

  1. Allen Griffiths says:

    Hi interesting blog, I actually came across it through your comments on the Kent and Sussex tea website. We are big fans of theirs having moved from Suki tea last year and have been working our way through the teas. Mainly Chinese green, herbal and tisanes.
    Living nearby to Pluckley we have visited about three times and as they say, they are difficult to find.
    I was originally told about them by a person I worked with who lives nearby. Personally I don’t think you are missing much by not visiting as it is basically an old farm warehouse, unless of course you are on your way to France via the tunnel or Dover and have a couple of hours to kill. Most of the staff have little or no knowledge of the teas and although very helpful only seem to be there to pack the orders. I would stick to ordering through the website which while not that sexy is very informative and I have always found their service extremely easy and prompt. I can’t help thinking they are missing a few tricks though re their on line marketing.
    Apart from those, other things I am also not keen on, they do not as you say offer any free postage or discounts for regulars. Regarding the £20 for doing a review I have done loads for them and never got a voucher. Mind you if you see the number of reviews done each month it probably isn’t surprising so the gimmick works. A lot of their tisanes seem to taste very similar.
    Things I like, excellent service, the prices are second to none (50 grams of gunpowder for £1.25 as opposed to over £5.00 or more elsewhere, ok you don’t get a little caddy each time but who cares), which more than makes up for the cost of postage which is as you say is cheap anyway, though they have just put it up slightly. The product quality is always extremely good. The choice is wonderful and there is plenty of information on the website. You can order up to a Kilo of most products with plenty of choice of quantities. Everything seems to be geared to doing business online and indeed we were told when last there (early August) they have now completed their expansion into the warehouse next door. Should you want to phone the numbers free, though I have only phoned once. Their Chinese Sencha is excellent value and we now get 500 grams a time backed up by different Chun mee’s and Gunpowders.
    Regards
    Allen

  2. teaxplorer says:

    Hi Allen,

    I really appreciate your comments, especially since you have visited their shop and have ordered numerous teas from them. When I placed my order, I only bought black teas, so I am really glad to hear that you are impressed with their green teas. They have a great selection of black teas, and their green tea selection looks equally impressive.

    Are there any tisanes that you would recommend? Have you tried their green Rooibos?

    Best regards,

    Drew

    • Allen Griffiths says:

      Hi Drew,
      We have tried a few Tisanes and “wellness teas” and to be honest I get a bit muddled about which is which.
      As I wrote in the Pina Colada review “There does seem to be very much of a similarity in colour and taste between the Pina Colada and the Vanilla tisane, I suspect it must be the rose hips and hibiscus which both have and seem to be the overwhelming flavours. There is also a similarity to the Christmas tea in colour!”
      I think similarity in taste seems to be a bit of a theme as there is more than one that has cloves in, for instance the Yoga tea. The instructions say brew for half an hour which from the comments in a review someone appears to have done just that and likes it. I am afraid all I could taste was cloves and that was after only brewing for a few minutes. In the end I removed the cloves from the packet to give the other flavours a chance. It’s not that I don’t like cloves, it’s just they are quite a strong flavour.
      Whilst on the subject of the Pina Colada and or Vanilla tea I would imagine it would be a very pleasant drink for a hot sunny day if I was organised enough and optimistic enough to brew some and place it in the fridge to chill, sadly I have not to date been that organised.
      We have also tried the red ginseng which tastes very strongly of Lemon and Ginger. My partner has also tried the Lavender and Camomile and despite only getting a fifty gram packet she still has some left weeks later, although she does get through at least 2 x 100 gram packs of ordinary camomile quite often, so I am assuming she is not keen on the addition of the lavender.
      We have ordered a second batch of the Chakra which makes quite a pleasant evening drink and I think we tried the Reiki, though I can’t be sure as I do not appear to have commented on it.
      I have tried the Cretan Mountain tea which was very pale and interesting, I am glad that they say it was “good for me”.
      I am afraid we are not fans of Rooibos and so haven’t tried it, as you have guessed we are more in to the less strong teas and therefore are fans of Green Teas.

      Hope these opinions help.

      Kind Regards

      Allen

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