Thanks to a boom in coffee culture, tea has been left in the lurch. With trendy cafes such as Nylon Coffee and Symmetry available, most patrons would rather opt for a latte over a cup of chamomile.
That said, tea doesn’t have to be prosaic. With International Tea Day coming up on Dec 15, we’re resurrecting the hot beverage for a soothing – and stylish – comeback.
The Republican Post’s Pradesh Pragasam and Shafina Mahesh bring you four places where you can get some quality tea.
Poison Ivy Bistro
Tucked away on a farm is a cosy bistro named Poison Ivy. Besides serving up delectable homemade food, the bistro serves teas that were harvested on-site.
Their in-house specials include Fig Tea ($2) and Lemongrass Tea ($2), both of which come hot or iced. Keyword: no-frills. The teas were served in plain glasses without sugar.
The Fig Tea tasted like unsweetened grass jelly, while the Hot Lemongrass Tea had an unpleasantly strong flavour that was similar to ginger. I’d recommend getting sweet treats such as homemade banana bread and steamed palm sugar cake to complement the unsweetened teas.
|Location100 Neo Tiew Road, S719026. Open Wednesdays to Fridays from 8am – 5.30pm; weekends and public holidays from 8am – 6.30pm. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. To get there, take the $3 shuttle bus service from Kranji MRT station.|
The Connoisseur Concerto (TCC)
This food and beverage chain boasts an impressive selection of gourmet food and beverages. It has fifteen outlets around Singapore and its ION Orchard outlet is known for its cosy atmosphere. Their most popular teas are the Pomegranate Iced Tea ($8) and the Yuzu Kukicha ($9) respectively.
While the Pomegranate Iced Tea had a very light citrus scent, the Yuzu Kukicha had a strong green tea smell with notes of yuzu. The Pomegranate Iced Tea also had nata de coco (coconut jelly) bits that added extra texture and sweetness to the drink.
The Yuzu Kukicha came with a sweet scone that balanced out the strong taste of unsweetened tea. It is important to drain the Yuzu Kukicha mixture multiple times, in order to get the flavours out.
|Pomegranate Iced Tea:★★★★★|
|Location2 Orchard Turn #B2-49 ION Orchard, S238801. Open Thursdays to Sundays from 10am to 10pm; Fridays, Saturdays, eve of public holidays and public holidays from 10am to 11pm.|
Fresh Fruits Lab
The Fresh Fruits Lab is a laboratory-themed bar and bistro that is well known for their trademark fruity accents in their food and drink. Alongside their bestsellers – the Tokio ($5) and Apple Berry ($5) teas – we decided to try the Yuzu tea ($6).
The Hot Tokio Tea had a subtle rose scent and a hint of spice. On the other hand, the Apple Berry Tea is delightfully fruity. The Yuzu Tea has a citrusy taste and a hint of honey.
I highly recommend the fluffy lychee cake as it complements the Hot Tokio Tea. You can also refill your tea for free – just ring the staff.
Apple Berry Tea:★★★★☆
|Location351 Changi Rd, Singapore 419818. Open on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends. Closed on Mondays.|
Joe & Dough
With 10 outlets under its belt, Joe and Dough is renowned for its house-blended coffee and handcrafted pastries. To beat the afternoon heat, we opted for the Assam Reserve Tea ($4.20) and Earl Grey Rose Iced Tea ($4.20).
For those of you who like tangy beverages, the Assam Reserve Tea is the drink for you. It leaves a satisfyingly sour aftertaste with every sip. Meanwhile, the Earl Grey Rose Tea puts a modern twist on a classic English tea with a hint of rose.
Their signature Gula Melaka Pandan Cake is a must-try and goes well with the Earl Grey Rose Iced Tea.
|Assam Reserve Tea:★★★★☆|
Earl Grey Rose Iced Tea:★★★★☆
|Location277 Orchard Road, Orchard Gateway, #01-10, S238858. Open Mondays to Sundays from 10am to 11pm.|
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