Her Special Tea | Chow | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Coverage for Central Oregon, by Central Oregonians.
100% Local. No Paywalls.

Every day, the Source publishes a mix of locally reported stories on our website, keeping you up to date on developments in news, food, music and the arts. We’re committed to covering this city where we live, this city that we love, and we hear regularly from readers who appreciate our ability to put breaking news in context.

The Source has been a free publication for its 22 years. It has been free as a print version and continued that way when we began to publish online, on social media and through our newsletters.

But, as most of our readers know, times are different for local journalism. Tech giants are hoovering up small businesses and small-business advertising—which has been the staple for locally owned media. Without these resources, journalism struggles to bring coverage of community news, arts and entertainment that social media cannot deliver.

Please consider becoming a supporter of locally owned journalism through our Source Insider program. Learn more about our program’s benefits by clicking through today.

Support Us Here

Food & Drink » Chow

Her Special Tea

Local tea mastermind blends up mind-blowing flavor combinations from whole, natural ingredients

by

comment

Cindi Neiswonger has always had an affinity for tea. After working a corporate job for 22 years, she decided that a career change was necessary. "I had a 3-year-old daughter, and I wanted to spend more time with her," she explained. "So I started holding children's tea parties. I was able to play around with my own blends, and we had some co-packed to sell at the parties. When the recession hit, the tea party business literally stopped overnight." 

Hand-blended teas made right here in Bend. - COURTESY OF INSPIRED LEAF TEAS
  • Courtesy of Inspired Leaf Teas
  • Hand-blended teas made right here in Bend.

Realizing that tea-making was her true passion, Neiswonger launched Inspired Leaf Teas. "We worked with a local marketing company on the name and the logo, and we got off the ground 10 years ago. Since then we've continuously evolved and adapted. It's important to me that we exclusively offer whole leaf teas and use all natural ingredients, nothing artificial. If you look into the bag you'll see whole ingredients, like cardamom pods and real chocolate." 

Neiswonger detailed the art of blending fresh ingredients in a way that would produce robust, honest flavors. "We try to come up with unique flavor combinations while offering the classics, like Earl Grey and English Breakfast. One popular dessert tea is our Toffee Chocolate Hazelnut, made with local toffee [from Holm Made Toffee Co.], dark chocolate, cacao nibs and black tea. Our Cardamom Vanilla tea is made with hand-ground cardamom pods, giving it a super fresh flavor."

The tea is packaged in plant-based pyramid tea bags, making it safer for consumption. "People don't realize this, but most of those cute little pyramid tea bags are made from polyester, and chemicals and toxins are released directly into the water. We ensure there's nothing in the teacup that could be harmful to our customers."

Inspired Leaf Teas are locally available for purchase at Newport Market, Locavore, Ginger's Kitchenware and Food 4 Less. Neiswonger's hand-blended teas can also be found online at inspiredleaf.com.

About The Author

Cayla Clark

Cayla graduated from UCLA with a degree in playwriting, soon after realizing that playwriting is not a viable career option. Fortunately, this led her to journalism, and she is thrilled to be part of such a unique and fun-loving team. Upcoming local events? Send them her way!

Add a comment

More by Cayla Clark