By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Dec 27, 2022 at 11:01 AM

There might be a chill in the air, but Aureal Ojeda, founder of Outwoken Tea, is preparing to warm things up with a winter tea tasting series in collaboration with the Wehr Nature Center, 9701 W. College Ave. in Franklin.

The series, which is appropriate for both tea enthusiasts and those curious to learn more about one of the world’s most ancient beverages, will kick off on Saturday, Jan. 21 with a class that pairs tea with select bean to bar chocolate.

“My goal is to meet people where they are, whether they’re familiar with tea or completely unfamiliar,” notes Ojeda. “I want to welcome people openly and share my. During these classes, people will not only be able to taste the teas, but I’ll be teaching them different ways brew it. Everyone will also get some tea to take home and brew themselves.”

About the classes

During the inaugural class, which will take place from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Ojeda will delve into the history and qualities of rare Kenyan purple tea, walk attendees through proper brewing techniques and answer questions about the tea, its fascinating story and health benefits. Meanwhile, guests will have the opportunity to taste the tea and experience it alongside various chocolates to see how the tea and chocolate present various tasting notes along the way. Each guest will go home with a bag of Kenyan purple tea to enjoy at home. 

Can’t make it to the January class?  Ojeda will be hosting two additional classes on Feb. 18 from 1-2:30 p.m. and March 28 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Each of the classes are $40 each and can be purchased online. Please note that there is a $5 charge for parking at the Wehr Nature Center for non-members.

Ojeda founded Outwoken Tea in 2020 after delving deep into research on the origins, culture and benefits of tea. Her mission was to create a company that not only offered high quality tea, but did so in an environmentally friendly manner while supporting family farms in developing countries. As a result, she has added to the tea landscape by establishing a zero waste company that sources unique teas including Tumio Purple Tea from Kenya and African White Pearl tea, which is hand rolled by women in Malawi.

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.