Hey guys, I had the opportunity to interview Andy Hayes, the founder and creator of Plum Deluxe. For those of you who don’t know, Plum Deluxe is a Seattle-based company dedicated to making them most delectable blends of loose leaf tea. Their teas are contain ingredients that are organic, locally sourced, and absolutely delicious! Read on and learn a little bit about Andy and his mission to bring great tea to the world!
Q: How did you get your start working in the tea business?
Andy: I lived much of my life in Europe. So when I was building my business, I was seeking a product to incorporate into our lineup of offerings. And tea seemed
like the most logical thing. I think the European mindset and the types of
offerings in European literary cafes and sidewalk shops is different than
what Americans are used to. So I try to bring that flair into our products.
Q: Why did you decide to devote your life/career to creating tea?
Andy: Tea literally landed in my lap! When I came up with the idea, I just
happened to find a mentor who helped me get started. It all happened
so quickly, I could hardly say no. I launched the company with 4 blends
and a subscription, and the offerings took off like a rocket! I haven’t looked
Q: How would you describe your love of tea? Is it an intense love?
Andy: “Life long dance partner” comes to mind. Being a tea maker, I need to
make room in my life for all kinds of tea, even ones I don’t personally like or
perhaps ones I’ve not experienced myself. So I think of it more like a
Q: What are the benefits of drinking loose leaf teas as opposed to the tea
found in stores?
Andy: Well, how many things do you drink where you can’t see what’s inside?
That’s what kind of creeps me out about bagged tea. Plus, part of the
enjoyment of foods and beverages is the scent and the visual display. Loose leaf allows you to savor the most of these senses.
Q: What’s the best part about your job?
Andy: The never-ending ability to create! And it’s a requirement – our tea of the
month club requires a new blend created every month that’s never been
Q: What’s the worst part?
Andy: Tea can be pretty dusty (especially spicy ingredients that make you sneeze, like
ginger or black pepper).
Q: How do you like to drink your tea?
Andy: Unless it’s a strong breakfast black – which begs for milk and a touch of
sweetener – I generally don’t add anything to my tea.
Q: What’s your favorite blend of tea?
Andy: Generally, I gravitate towards white teas, which in my mind are that perfect
balance between the taste of a black tea but with a gentile taste and the
lower caffeine levels. We recently released a mango lavender white tea
that I honestly could eat (but I wouldn’t recommend).
Q: What advice would you give to people who are interested in trying loose
Andy: Don’t rely on your past experiences. I know so many people are scarred
by poor quality supermarket teas they had when they were younger. And find
opportunities to try new things. You don’t know what you’ll like and dislike. Plus, exploring new flavors with your family and friends is an awesome way to
broaden your horizons.
Q: Is there anything you would like our readers to know about Plum
Andy: We have some great products available, but so do other purveyors. I think
what makes Plum Deluxe stand apart is our community. Our customers
care for each other and look out for each other. Very often I see someone
has sent someone else a surprise care package because they knew they
were having a rough time. I don’t think you find that type of community
very often. And given the global culture we live in, we are very proud of this.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article. If you know about Plum Deluxe already, leave a comment telling us your favorite blend. And if you want to check out some teas, you can go to https://www.plumdeluxe.com/. Happy Sipping!