When it comes to pairing drinks with food, wine has long been the go-to option. The breadth and complexity of wine means there are myriad choices for almost any dish, and wine can speak of a particular place like almost no other beverage.

But what if you’re choosing not to drink alcohol? Water or commercial soft drinks don’t enhance and play with flavours like wine can and have no history, no provenance. Enter Charlie and Natalie, two Doctors of Food Science with exceptional palates who made it their mission to fill this aching void. Their brilliant solution? Single-estate tea, cold-brewed and given the lightest of effervescence. Just like grapes, teas have terroir – they speak intimately of how and where they were grown and, most importantly, pair brilliantly with food. After two years research and development tasting hundreds upon hundreds of samples, they selected three perfect expressions and Saicho Drinks came into the world.

For the launch of their new addition to the range, a limited edition called Eight Immortals, Charlie and Natalie asked Mystery to create the packaging design for this new drink.

Being a high-end, premium product, called for design with a powerful presence on the shelf while also fitting seamlessly into the brand family. We chose a rich, earthy and elegant red as the main primary colour, paired with gold foil to highlight the bespoke illustration created by Saicho’s own illustrator following a set of guidelines we created.

The result is something starkly different but utterly of a piece with the existing range – a bold statement of individuality amongst a family. The companion gift box speaks of the tea’s origin on Phoenix Mountain in China’s Guangdong Province and highlights the heritage and provenance of the tea with eloquent simplicity.

“Mystery really brought our vision for the Rare Tea Collection to life, creating a design that has its own beautiful, distinctive character whilst maintaining a consistency with our whole range.”

Charlie Winkworth-Smith, Founder of Saicho Drinks