When I first started blogging all those years ago, I chose "skinny latte" as my blog title because I was a coffee drinker and about to move to Australia's coffee capital. It was primarily a weight loss blog in those days too, so I felt the word skinny had to be in there somewhere! These days, I'm definitely more of a tea drinker but somehow I don't think Chai Latte Strikes Back has quite the same ring to it ;) So while the name has stuck, my drinking tastes have altered a little over the years.
If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you've probably heard me talk about Drink Me Chai or seen many a photo of me trying to be artistic, cupping a giant mug of it, vis a vis:
I'm sure you get the picture :)
Having tried so many instant lattes and powdered drinks over the years that have never truly won me over, and being a long walk from my local cafe now, I can't tell you what a revelation Drink Me Chai was. I first discovered it about two years ago, when we were visiting Tom's parents. His mum had a tub of it in her pantry, and once I'd tasted it I was hooked! I'd always been a fan of chai, but this was something really quite special. It's one of those things that feels incredibly indulgent and luxurious, and exotic too, but you can whip it out of the pantry any time and make yourself a mug of it when you need a pick me up. It's 99% caffeine free, and uses whole spices, skimmed milk powder and quality tea. You can even pick up a Fairtrade version of the Spiced flavour. It's suitable for vegetarians and those following a gluten free diet as well.
Being a huge fan of the product led me to be naturally curious about the people who produce it, so after months of feeling shy I finally plucked up the courage to ask Amanda Hamilton, the founder of Drink Me Chai, to be a guest on the latest SLSB podcast! Having recently been inspired to give some career dreams of my own a shot, I love talking to other people about how they have made their business dreams a reality. Drink Me Chai started out as just an idea after Amanda enjoyed some chai in India and wanted to bring the experience home for others to enjoy as well. A few years later, it's now the number one selling brand of chai in the UK. Pretty impressive stuff!
I went down to Drink Me Chai headquarters a few weeks ago and I got to ask Amanda all about chai, how Drink Me Chai got started, how the business and brand have grown, and what the challenges and rewards of the journey have been. Meeting Amanda helped cement my belief that being passionate about what you do is so important and will inevitably lead to success. It may look different than what you thought when you started, and you may have to move the goal posts every now and then, but that's part of the fun! Amanda still feels very passionate about making the joy of the chai experience accessible to everyone and her enthusiasm for what she does was very inspiring! :)
|Amanda and I in the Drink Me Chai headquarters!|
I also really like how Drink Me Chai have retained the friendly small business approach with all the success and expansion they have experienced. Being available to their customers is important to them, and they have a dedicated team who are only too happy to help. They even picked me up when I got lost in the wilds of Kent looking for their office ;) [in my defence, even the locals didn't know where it was!]
So if you'd like to hear how a young mum got started with her successful business, give the podcast a listen! You can hear it here:
Or on iTunes
Or download to your computer.
If you want to give Drink Me Chai a go yourself, you can find the Spiced and Vanilla flavours in all Waitrose supermarkets, and selected Tesco, Sainsbury's and ASDA supermarkets. Or you can do what I do and order it on Amazon! I wanted to try the other flavours and was also finding the 250g tub wasn't lasting me all that long so I splashed out on a 1kg tub of Spiced....it kept me going for months! A degree of restraint is required though, I must admit ;)
Or, perhaps you'd like to try it for free?!
Yes, it's give-away time!
Drink Me Chai has very kindly offered to send one lucky UK SLSB reader a tub of each of their delicious flavours - spiced, vanilla, peppermint, chocolate and mango - that's five tubs of Drink Me Chai!!
To be in with a chance to win, please leave a comment on this post telling me your favourite flavour of Drink Me Chai or, if you haven't tried it yet, which flavour you like the sound of. You can read all about the different flavours here.
I've tried every flavour, as you would expect (!), but my very favourite is the peppermint. It tastes like a dessert :)
I'd love to hear what yours are so get commenting! If you aren't a blogger please leave an email address in your comment so I can contact you if you are the lucky winner.
To get extra entries, you can do any of the following if you wish:
- Follow me (@philippa_moore) on Twitter
- Follow Drink Me Chai (@Drinkmechai) on Twitter
- Tweet your favourite Drink Me Chai flavour with the hashtag #SLSBchaigiveaway
- Like the SLSB Facebook Page
The winner (you lucky thing!) will be drawn at random at 5pm UK time on Friday (March 2nd 2012) so make sure you get in quick. Trust me, you don't want to miss out!
Just to reiterate, the give-away is only open to UK residents. Sorry ROW'ers! But Amanda did tell me that they are currently trying to get Drink Me Chai distributed in Australia so keep your eyes peeled in Coles and Woolies, as you may see it there very soon!!