Considering hops and wine grapes flourish in the Mid-Willamette Valley, it may not be a huge surprise to learn that tea plants, or Camellia sinensis, flourish here, as well. But it was a surprise to Rob Miller and John Vendeland, founders of Salem’s Minto Island Tea Company. When the duo planted their first half-acre of tea plants back in 1988, they didn’t expect the plants to survive – but they thrived. Today, their small-batch organic green, white and black teas might be the freshest leaves you’ve ever tasted. If you can’t decide which tea to gift, the variety pack is a practical pick.