About Me

I
I still remember visiting my grandfather's tea plantation in Welimada, Sri Lanka in the Uwa district as a little girl. The beautiful, refreshing smell that came with the cold breeze blowing over the tea garden's hills still lingers in my memory. I remember watching the ladies pluck tea leaves with scarves around their heads to protect from the warming sun and the baskets on their backs. My mother tied a pillowcase on my neck, and I went tea plucking with them. That's when I first learned the 'fine pluck'- two leaves and a bud. I brought the few tea leaves proudly to the back verandah of my grandfather's house, where he stood near a post with a scale hanging at the top. One by one, the tea-plucking ladies came with their baskets to be weighed and marked down on a notebook. They were paid according to the weight of the leaves, which is still done today.
My late grandfather, Arthur Peris Jayawardene, was the first Sri Lankan to be in a tea estate management position. Later he bought his own tea garden and grew tea organically. He used the waste from his cattle farm to fertilize the tea plantation. Caring genuinely for his workers, he let them cut trees from his land to build better houses. Young pregnant women and mothers could have free cow's milk to enhance nutrition.
When I source black teas, I always get teas close to the taste I remember from my childhood - the fresh, authentic Sri Lankan tea of my grandfather's tea garden.
Influenced by my Sri Lankan heritage and by and my passion for nutrition and healthy living, I have designed "spiced health teas." I have handcrafted the teas based on scientific research with carefully sourced the ingredients to my hearts' satisfaction. The ingredient are loaded with antioxidants, polyphenols and other micronutrients with numerous health benefits. These spices and herbs were used in ayurvedic medicine for over 5000 years to treat many ailments. The health benefits of them are back by many peer-reviewed, published scientific papers.
After many trials, the tea blends are 'perfected' to bring you the satisfaction of a great tasting, aromatic tea. You can enjoy teas regardless of whether you care for the health benefits or not. What you taste is the actual taste of the brewed herbs and spices. No flavouring is needed when you use exotic spices and herbs in abundance because that is their job! You can enjoy a delicious tea, and health benefits are a bonus.
Ceylon Select is my dream come true, my passion and my way of telling the world who I am. When growing up, a tea brewed from herb and spices found in the back garden was the first aid and the remedy for many ailments. While embracing the modern trend of drinking tea blends, making the teas all-natural with ayurvedic herbs and spices from Sri Lanka shows that I am still very traditional at the core!
Many years and many milestones later, I believe its fate that got me involved in the tea industry. I was fortunate to get my training and education on tea and tea blending from the industry specialist Sylvana Lavasque from the International Tea Education Institute. I am so thankful for everyone who had faith in me and helped to make it this far, especially my husband and my beautiful three daughters, who always encourage me and assist me in every way they can.
Cheers to your health and happiness!
Dami Rodrigo B.Sc, RHN
Holistic Nutritionist
Master Tea Sommelier
Professional Tea Blender