Heidi Wyn, owner of Curiosi-Tea House, welcomes anyone to be curious about her tea products. Wyn has a history with and a passion for educating. Before venturing into tea, Wyn taught a variety of grade levels, ages, and subjects, ranging from one-room schools in South Dakota teaching all subjects K through 8th grade to computer classes in South Central College (SCC), where she eventually stuck around as the Director of Student Life. This period of her life gave Wyn an incredible set of life experiences and room for opportunities.
During her time as a Student Life Director at SCC, Wyn found out that all the running around had been leaving her dehydrated, which is when she began looking for coffee alternatives to drink on her busy days.
“I’m caffeine sensitive. I didn’t do coffee, didn’t do pop, so what else was there to drink?” Wyn said, going on to explain what sparked her interest in tea. “In the late 1990s, Lipton came out with the white and green bottled teas and I really like this, but it’s really expensive and I don’t want to buy a plastic bottle every day. So how can I find this? That was my adventure into tea and finding where I can find white and green tea reasonably priced.”
During her search, Wyn was referred to locations like TeaVana, but going there would require traveling to the cities. The only tea that Wyn could recall finding in Mankato in 1999 was boxed Lipton green tea. It was about this time that she realized that there wasn’t any tea place in Mankato at all. Now, Curiosi-Tea is a place to find quality tea locally.
Curiosi-Tea House offers more than 200 varieties of black, white, green, oolong, and rooibos teas in an abundance of different flavors that will treat your palate besides just green or boxed teas typically found at the grocery store.
To help you narrow your selection, tea tastings are held every Tuesday and Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m., which include five different samples for $3.50 plus tax with an additional discount of five percent off anything else you purchase those nights.
If drinking tea still seems a little out of your comfort zone but you would like some guidance on how to start, visit with Wyn. Her background in education really shines through when asked about tea, and she will be able to explain which teas might be best for you, how to use the products, and how to brew the best cup of tea.
There is no better and more trust-building an experience than talking to someone who is passionate about their business and their product, and Wyn strongly believes in this.
“I found TeaSource, which is a Minnesota company that has been around for 30-some years. I have a connection to someone who knows what they’re doing and they’re a local company,” Wyn said. “He works with small farmers all around the world and has a personal partnership with them. He buys directly from the farmers and I buy directly from him, so it’s a really close chain.”
She also uses locally-sourced honey and partners with others in Old Town, like their neighbor Friesen’s tuna salad and bread. They also have started serving meat-free meat from The Herbivorous Butcher located in Minneapolis.
Curiosi-Tea House also hosts open-mic nights, Saturday Samplings, music nights, and many other events that are not only entertaining but also create a warm and welcoming environment to share with friends, especially with a pot of tea.
“Sit down, have a cup of tea (not in plastic or Styrofoam), and enjoy what tea is; a conversation,” Wyn said.
Don’t miss out on their partTEAS and check out their Facebook for daily updates, specials, and events.