As cooler temperatures and drizzly skies settle over Seattle, we are reminded of how much we appreciate local businesses like Jeannie Liu’s Miro Tea in Ballard, where we can warm up in good company and enjoy one of the mary varieties of tea ready for the sipping.

Jeannie comes from a family of small-business owners, going back generations to South Korea and before that, China. After helping start Oasis, the popular bubble tea chain owned by her brother, she decided it was time to start her own business: In 2007, Miro Tea was born.

Miro Tea owner, Jeannie Liu.

The name “Miro” comes from Miroku, the Japanese word for a prophesied future Buddha. Jeannie chose the name because of what it represents: a convergence of tradition and modernity.

“My idea of tea houses has always been the very, very original tea houses,” said Jeannie. “Tea houses in China were actually very bustling places of gathering. They’re big halls, just filled with tons of people.” Miro straddles the line between this tradition and the more modern “workspace,” popularized by coffee shops. It’s a large, well-lit space, filled with clean modern edges and polished wooden tables. Save for the section covered in dozens of silver tea tins–a pared-down collection, according to Jeannie–the walls are dotted with warm, inviting landscape paintings.

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Intentionalist is your local guide to small businesses and the diverse people behind them. We believe that where you spend your money matters, and we’re sure glad you do too! Whether you identify as a localist, activist, or just a good neighbor, we make it easy for you to connect with, learn about, and support small businesses in your community through everyday decisions about where you eat, drink, and shop.

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