World Tea Expo Beverage Challenge Winner Looks to Disrupt the Tea Industry

Tea seller Brook37 The Atelier is barely a year old after launching in January 2023, but already the company has much to celebrate. A sourcer and seller of exclusive, rare, and unique teas direct from some of the world’s most exclusive gardens, Brook37, a women-owned company with a 90% female workforce, is looking to disrupt the industry.

The company starts that disruption right away with its branding, which is defined by a bright salmon color that pops in an industry dominated by neutrals and greens and yellows. The name of the brand, Brook37, a portmanteau of sorts, comes from the mashup of “brook” for the stream CEO and Founder Mou Dasgupta lives next to, and “37” as an allusion to 2737 BC, the year tea was discovered in China.

Mou Dasgupta
Brook37 CEO and Founder Mou Dasgupta

“I wanted vibrant and bright colors because usually tea is always very toned down and mellow,” says Dasgupta, who left her corporate job of 25 years on a quest to find more freedom and the chance to build her own brand.

The brand is also concerned with sustainability, and it offers biodegradable tea bags, reusable packaging, recyclable tea envelopes, and a 1% donation for carbon elimination. “Our tea bags are extra large for better brewing, which you will not see in the USA,” she says. “They are also biodegradable tea bags, so they don't release any plastics. Our packaging is 80% reusable or biodegradable, and for the other 20%, we pay to become plastic neutral. So we donate to plant trees to offset any plastic that we use.”

Dasgupta settled on launching a tea brand because she grew up drinking quality Darjeeling tea in India, but it wasn’t widely available in the States. “I feel that no one is marketing and championing Darjeeling tea in the USA the way it deserves to be championed and marketed. I feel so proud that I brought that high-quality tea, and it has been appreciated here.”

In fact, Brook37’s oolong Tea, Moonlight Stroll, grown in the Darjeeling foothills of the Himalayas, took home three World Tea Expo Beverage Challenge awards for Best Leaf, Best Oolong Tea, and Best Origin-India.

moonlight stroll brook37 tea
Brook37's Moonlight Stroll tea took home three World Tea Expo Beverage Challenge awards. (Photo: Brook37)

The teas Brook37 aims to sell and bring to light are small batches from India that are sometimes sold and accounted for before they are even plucked. Tea types include black, green, white, oolong, herbal, and flavored teas, and the varieties range from Darjeeling English Breakfast and Darjeeling 2nd Flush to Assam and Mashala teas and more.

The company’s flavored teas are all blended in-house by a master blender with ingredients from all over the world. Flavors include Pink Rose Strawberry, Lavender Earl Grey, Minty Watermelon, and more.

Brook37 also offers four wellness teas with functional ingredients and benefits in the flavors Lemon Ginger, Floral Mint, Sweet Ceylon Spicy Berry, and Chocolate Hangover. “We have four amazing wellness category teas, and these are very well thought out with functional, fresh, and natural ingredients. We don't do too many teas, but whatever we do is very thoughtful,” says Dasgupta. “They also taste good, so you can make mocktails using them.”

In fact, one of the ways Brook37 is hoping to disrupt the industry is by positioning its teas—and all tea—as a non-alcoholic beverage alternative and the mainstream drink for the modern consumer. Brook37 calls tea the “sober sibling of wine.” “We work with mixologists, and we come up with recipes with our teas,” explains Dasgupta. “Then let's say a cafe wants to carry our tea; we go and we train them not only how to brew our tea, but also how to make these fun drinks with the teas.

“It’s taking an ancient drink like tea and modernizing it for today's time.”

brook37 floral mint tea
Brook37's Floral Mint Tea, one of four wellness teas. (Photo: Brook37)

As part of that modernizing movement, Dasgupta says she’s also observed afternoon tea slowly coming back—but in a different way, “A lot of restaurants want to actually start a tea program. And I think also tea mocktails or cocktails are gaining popularity with the new generation. So I think tea is slowly gaining awareness, but there's a lot of work to do.”

Mou Dasgupta brook37

Part of that work is in educating the public and generating awareness. “It’s about education around tea to convince people that it's a fun drink,” says Dasgupta. “It’s about modernization, so that awareness is really important. And for my brand specifically, it’s really reaching as many people as possible and having them taste our tea.

“It's about everybody, all tea companies. I think we should collectively start pushing about why it is so good.”


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