Vanessa Sanchez, owner of Teaness
, a local organic tea company, discovered her love for tea in the most San Antonio way possible — with visits to Bill Miller’s BBQ.
"I'd always go to Bill Miller's for tea and get those 50-cent refills; I loved them with lemon," she said. "But as a kid, I didn't have a healthy diet and I had a weak immune system. I'd get deathly sick for at least two weeks each year."
Sanchez struggled with immune system issues into her early twenties, when she began to research tea, herbs and her Native American roots.
"Native Americans made most of their remedies with tea, so that's when I started experimenting with the tea leaves and herbs," she said. "I wanted to recreate what my ancestors did."
Sanchez began growing and blending her own organic tea varieties while documenting the process on Instagram in late 2016 and realized there was a large demand for her products. She launched her business, Teaness, via pop-up events in 2017 while working as the manager for Rosella's Jones location and caring for her now three-year old son.
Teaness sources its organic tea leaves, herbs and flowers from smaller family-owned farms, and it offers several varieties, including lemon black tea, Immunitea, green tea, single-origin matcha and vanilla sage white tea. The brand found its first commercial space at White Elephant
in May 2018 and quickly expanded its local fan base.
Sanchez has since developed special blends for six additional businesses, including all four Rosella
locations and Kimura
, and she plans more growth in 2019, including new pop-up events, hiring employees and expanding her merchandise.
"People on the outside are always saying, 'Man, you're doing so much, this has happened so fast,'" she said. "But I feel like there's so much more I can be doing. I'm growing little by little."
To learn more about Teaness, click here
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