TEA JOURNEYS OF LYS WAINWRIGHT, GENERAL MANAGER OF STEEP MOUNTAIN TEA HOUSE
My tea journey started at my great-grandparents house when I was about nine or ten years old. Hearing the words, “Quieres té?” would almost instantly cure the boredom and procrastination of doing schoolwork. My abuela would give me a cup of strong black tea before I started any of my homework or projects. The focused energy that I so greatly appreciated, carried my love for tea all the way into adulthood. A majority of positions I’ve been in my career so far have revolved around preparing tea, coffee, and innovative elixir beverages.
In 2019, I visited a teahouse in Rochester, NY. I ended up getting to know the owner, Niraj. He and his wife Mary founded the only authentic teahouse in town. He had curated a special environment where you knew you were going to have a full-on experience with tea. I was inspired by him to land where I’d be able to educate people about the extremely interesting path that tea has made.
During my college years, I developed a passion for blending my own teas and botanicals. My happiest moments have always been when I help people find herbal remedies and flavors that make them light up. I believe that everyone can discover something new about teas that they can love. Overall, a lot of my greatest projects and processes have been able to happen all thanks to camellia sinensis!