Hoogly tea was launched at the NEC Food and Drink Expo last year by Danish tea enthusiast and Brighton resident, Tina Gloggengieser. Here, SBT explores their journey and catch up with Tina to find out more

‘Hygge’ may not directly translate into English, yet the phenomenon has become hugely popular in the UK in the last couple of years. Discussed in Mintel’s ‘Trends for 2017’ report and with Google UK searches for ‘hygge interior design’ jumping 163% in the last quarter of 2016, the hygge lifestyle trend shows no sign of slowing down in 2017.

It’s often translated as ‘cosyness’, however Visit Denmark explains that hygge is: “creating a nice, warm atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life with good people around you.”

It is hygge that provides the inspiration for Hoogly tea. Tina Gloggengieser (originally from Aarhus in Denmark) says: “Back in September 2015, my partner Paul and I were walking along Brighton beach, discussing ways to bring the Hygge concept to the UK, and we thought – what better way to do it than through the British love of tea!”

Tina has an impressive grounding in food and nutrition. She trained as a chef at City College Brighton, studied nutrition at Oxford College, and food journalism in Wimbledon. She says: “As time went by, tea became my biggest fascination. I decided to take it to another level and create my own tea blends, using unusual flavours and unique combinations.”

There’s Around the Fire Black Tea – a combination of smoky tea leaves, warming spices, safflower and crushed chilli; Baked Apple Chai – a base of Mellow Sri Lankan tea with apple, ginger, cinnamon and cloves; and Sparkling White – Chinese white tea with apple, lemongrass, elderflower and rosehip. Not to mention cosy chamomile, chocolate brownie and marzipan.

“When creating my blends, I am inspired by my love of good food,” says Tina.  “When a taste or aroma makes me feel good and tastes delicious, I try to recreate this Hoogly sensation with tea.”

With the help of her business partner Paul, who deals with the finance side of Hoogly, Tina was able to set the business up on a relatively low budget. She used her savings, and enlisted the help of her graphic designer brother for the branding and website. She also tests any new tea blend ideas on her (very willing) friends and family.

Hoogly was launched at the Food and Drink Expo trade show 2016, less than a year after that lightbulb moment on Brighton seafront.

“It was bit nerve racking launching at the NEC,” says Tina. “It was a huge show with a lot of competition and many experienced companies around us, but it was also very exciting and a great experience. I learnt a lot and grew in confidence,” says Tina. “We also redesigned our packaging following feedback from the show.”

Hoogly has recently become a Conde Nast Johansens UK hospitality preferred partner. This means we will be their exclusive tea company, stocked in over 600 luxury hotels and spas around the world.

The teas are all blended and packed in the UK, ethically sourced and fairly traded. The biodegradable tea pyramids are soil association certified.

Hoogly Tea is served in selected cafes, restaurants, independent shops, gyms and golf clubs around Brighton including Eco Gym, Singing Hills Golf Club, Robin Hood pub and Intenso Expresso Bars. It is also available online, and can cater for any quantity, no matter how big or small, including teapods and loose tea. See www.hooglytea.com