Ito En recently introduced its Brooklyn Breakfast Blend tea; a combination of tea, coffee, cranberry and orange peel that represents and shares Brooklyn’s eclectic community. It also reflects Ito En’s innovative spirit and its deep-rooted expertise in tea and coffee.
“The Brooklyn Breakfast Blend combines it all,” said Rona Tison, Ito En’s executive vice president—corporate relations and public relations.
Earlier this year, Ito En opened a new facility in Brooklyn’s Industry City, which was once a shipyard, has undergone revitalization and now is home to several artisanal businesses.
“So with that artisanal mindset, we thought it would be interesting to see what would be unique. That is how the idea for the Brooklyn Breakfast Blend came about,” Tison said.
Ito En combined traditional single-estate Colombian black tea from Bitaco and coffee beans from Valle del Cauca, Colombia. The cranberry and orange peel add hints of fruitiness, color and holiday flair while representing Cranberry and Orange streets in Brooklyn Heights. The recipe was hand-blended and packaged in the Industry City facility.
“It seemed like a natural evolution,” Tison said. “We combined that bohemian Brooklyn community edge with our Japanese innovation, because Ito En has always been known to be innovative.”
Tison noted a growing demand exists for single-estate teas because people like to know their tea’s origin. Tison describes the flavor as robust and full-bodied. Both the coffee and tea in the blend have a deep, bold taste and the orange and cranberry provide balance.
“I think we’ve done a good job of creating something with great flavor.”
Tison added—the beverage provides a good “pick-me-up” in the morning, and can be prepared with milk and sugar.
The Brooklyn Breakfast Blend takes a new approach to the age-old debate around coffee versus tea. This blend is “the best of both,” Tison said, and introduces coffee drinkers to tea and vice-versa.
“Palates are becoming a lot more adventurous,” said Tison.
The blend has quickly become one of Ito En’s top sellers this season. Though it was initially unveiled as a limited edition seasonal tea, the company will probably keep it as a signature blend.
“We hope to continue launching new teas and flavors,” Tison said.