Tea for You

Steeped Thoughts

Seeking an antidote to the double-espresso go-go grind? Behold the True Nature Tea Room in downtown Carbondale.

By Julie Comins Pickrell May 1, 2014 Published in the Summer 2014 issue of Aspen Sojourner

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Image: Anne Reeser

Serving as the beating heart of the sumptuously renovated True Nature Healing Arts Center (truenatureheals.com; possibly the most inviting yoga/meditation/spa facility this side of Kripalu), the Tea Room offers a wide selection of high-grade loose-leaf teas, fresh-pressed juices, smoothies, tapas, snacks, and desserts.

Additionally, over the summer chef David Avalos plans to introduce breakfast, lunch, and dinner options to the Tea Room menu ahead of September’s grand opening. Many items are raw and gluten- and dairy-free; all ingredients are guaranteed fair-trade, organic, and locally sourced whenever possible. Avalos says a common response from newcomers who sample the surprisingly delicious fare is, “Are you sure this is raw?”

Before or after tea, tune up your koshas with luxurious body- and soul-soothing treatments at the Petit Spa or yoga classes in a studio that appears to have been beamed directly from India. Or simply browse the on-site boutique for books, candles, yoga wear, and other accoutrements to aid you on your divine journey.

Chef Avalos and True Nature owners Deva and Eaden Shantay view the Tea Room, and indeed the entire True Nature facility, as a temple of healing for the community, beginning with what and how their clients ingest. “High-prana foods are one of the most important ways we heal ourselves,” says Avalos. Patrons are encouraged to linger in long conversation over a pot of aged Pu-erh (a.k.a. the “weight-loss tea”), savor a slice of raw dairyless key lime pie on the patio, or simply stroll the “peace garden” and nearby labyrinth in quiet contemplation.

Can you say, “Sayonara, Starbucks”?

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