Center: Sheyda's Mother Nazy in 1956, Marand, West Azarbaijan, Iran


As a British-Iranian woman, I am all too familiar with the stereotypes and cliches that most people associate with Iran. It has been a source of anger and despair but it has inspired me too.

I was drawn to tea and started Persian Apothecary to start a conversation. Where people talk about Iran in a different way. In parallel, I want to challenge the way we think about tea and the implicit colonialism which is still at the fore of the big tea houses.

Persian Apothecary is a reflection of my life. The teas I have created are a means for me to preserve and share my heritage and the memories I have of Iran, the place of my birth. Persian and Iranian mean similar things, but the word Persian resonated with me – it is loaded with undercurrents of the past, of a romanticised place and a moment in time that no longer exists.

In many ways, I have been contending with a feeling of displacement. I no longer travel to Iran so frequently and that fills me with melancholic nostalgia. In part, the teas represent those feelings of absence and loss, my relationship with my life in England and the life I could have had in Iran.

More importantly, though, these blends embody beautiful memories from my upbringing – the richness and complexity of formative places and experiences.

Our teas are made in England using the finest ingredients from across the world, but they are inspired by the ancient tea traditions and recipes passed down to me by my mother Nazy, pictured above. Persian Apothecary is a contemporary interpretation of those flavours and scents.

It is incredibly meaningful for me to be able to share these blends, an invitation to learn about the startling beauty of the world’s most misunderstood country.

Persian Apothecary wouldn’t be possible without the support of one particular friend and partner, Ali Eslami. Someone who understood and believed in the concept from the start. Ali grew up in Tehran and lives in London, but like Sheyda, wanted to support a project which champions Iranian creativity and culture.

Write us an email info@persianapothecary.com