The Chai Tent is a family business which was started by father-daughter team Richard and Danielle. Danielle has been running the Market stall every Saturday for almost two years and will be a familiar face to her regulars. Richard has a behind-the-scenes role but everyone who has tried their chai can thank him for the recipe! He spent time in India as a young man where he learnt to make traditional chai, something that he passed down to his daughter.
Danielle has been making chai for 10 years now and it is delicous. Their chai is authentic and is very different to the chai that can be bought in cafes; it is much stronger and spicier as it is a more traditional brew.
The Chai Tent believe the best chai is made by using fresh ingredients. They grind all of their spices fresh for every pot of chai they make and their spice blend is organic. They grind their spices in a large mortar and pestle throughout the day and I would highly recommend checking this process out. They also believe in supporting local so they use Nature’s Matters milk (another stall at the market). Oh and don’t fret if you can’t digest milk, they make a dairy-free chai blend with soy and almond milk. Another thing that The Chai Tent like to do is encourage their customers to have a go at making chai themselves, check out the recipe here if you want to have a go. They also have a range of organic herbal teas to try.
The health benefits of chai are really important to Danielle, she loves to talk with customers about how good chai is for them. Chai is a great alternative to coffee, it’s a very uplifting drink like coffee but comes without the negative impact of caffeine known as the caffeine crash. This is due to the use of cardamom spice which has wonderful health benefits and encourages a neutralisation of any caffeine that is in the black tea they use as in their chai. Chai is also great for your circulatory system thanks to the cinnamon and black pepper that’s in it. It is fantastic for digestion, and a few customers have even coined it their hangover cure. Overall, it is a very warming drink so is sure to be a winter favourite.
Like most of us at the Christchurch Farmers Market Danielle loves the atmosphere and she really enjoys the connection to the community. Danielle said her intention behind starting the Chai Tent was to connect with her community over delicious cups of Tea. She is there for the same reason all of the stall holders are; to provide an honest, local, and nourishing product to her community.
So make sure you pop down to the market and grab yourself a cup of The Chai Tent’s soul warming chai.
Thank you to Danielle for chatting to us.
Mixing chai with a shot of whiskey or rum makes for a great winter cocktail - or so we’ve heard :)