About the age:
I was just going off of memory when I said that it was 1999. When I returned to the store, I saw that it was actually a 2004.
About the Photography:
Setup: I placed the tea on a reflective piece of glass (my desk), with a neutral background (my wall), and added side lighting by turning my monitor's brightness to the max and placing a solid white image on the screen. I then shoot the tea (gasp) at an angle where my lens was essentially laying on the glass to accentuate the reflections.
Photoshop work: I actually used photoshop lightroom 2 beta. I manipulated the exposure, highlights etc... to make it look more realistic, and I increased the clarity. Then, for artistic effect, I added a little bit of vignetting, and made sure that the radius was a little bit bigger than the tea
EDIT: if you want to see more of my photos, you can here http://www.flickr.com/photos/trentknebel/