We take pride in cultivating our home-grown leaves, blending the finest organic teas and ingredients from carefully sourced farms, and hand-crafting ceramics to accompany the flavours. This holistic craft invites a deeper connection with ourselves and with nature. For centuries, tea has been ceremonial and ritual, as it is also personal. Tea has a unique power to heal, transform and soothe. Our teas enhance these experiences by creating space to breathe and find balance in busyness. Whether you are creating that space for peace in solitude or community, tea is a celebration of truly being connected.
The picture you see was taken moments before Victor served Tree Frog Green tea to the public for the first time. The event was Canada Day July 1, 2016 and a select group of tea lovers were the first to taste Canada's only commercially grown single origin organic tea. After six years of waiting, the first sip was the result of meeting the challenges of growing tea, the fortitude to keep making mistakes and the resolve to stay true to the terroir of tea.
Living in Japan and traveling through China would be the taste of tea culture that would shape his journey to create Westholme Tea Farm.
If he had a resume it would likely include his education in the southern United States, working in communications in the environmental field, leadership coaching and Zamboni driver are some of the highlights of an eclectic past.
The concept of Artfarm began to develop when Victor and Margit purchased the farm in 2003. Tea+food+art was the intial focus with Victor growing market garden vegetables, shared efforts in flowers and herbs and Margit's ceramics rounding things out. With the planting of tea, Victor's tea making experimentation shifted the farm to evolve into Teafarm. The marriage of tea and clay is a centuries old tradition that comes alive in the new entity of Westholme Tea Company.
As resident story teller and self taught tea maker, he weaves new perspective on innovation and Canadian tea culture while always making it feel like home.
Victor endeavours to connect people to Nature through the cup and the tea in it. Creating your most authentic tea experience is rooted in a belief of no compromise on quality, inspired moments shared with others and the intimacy of having fun with it all.
Margit Nellemann grew up on the small Island of Funen in Denmark.
Surrounded by orchards and the sea, nature became an integral part of Margit’s life and inspiration for her work in clay. She now lives in the beautiful Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island, British Columbia with her husband Victor and their two tea estate dachshunds, Thea and Magnus.
One of Margit’s passions is food. Following her training as a cook in Denmark, Margit spent the next few years travelling through Europe. While living in Spain, Margit rediscovered her childhood love for clay and ceramics.
In 1993 she moved to Canada where she further developed her work in clay. In 2005, Margit opened her own studio and gallery at her home on Vancouver Island.
Margit’s love for tea became the inspiration for a series of amazing ceramic teapots. Soon, the decision was made to open a teashop. With her background as a chef Margit began to create original tea blends from a variety of teas and herbs.
Having been raised on a farm and deeply immersed in a farming community in Denmark growing plants and cultivating the soil runs deep in Margit’s veins. After she and Victor moved to their farm in the Cowichan Valley, the challenge became finding the right crop for the soil conditions, location and climate. Margit’s love for tea helped in the decision.
In 2010, Margit & Victor planted 200 Camellia sinensis plants on their south facing slopes. Hundreds of plants have since followed.
When Margit is not busy creating tea inspired vessels, cups and other ceramics, she is likely engaged in crafting new tea blends for an ever growing clientele.