August 19, 2014

Afternoon Tea: New Museum

Tea and art. Why not? The Hester Street Cafe at the New Museum offers afternoon tea. A nice idea on its own or after seeing an exhibit.

Jee and I ordered tea for two. I chose the keemun and Jee the pan-fired green. Milk was not served with my tea and I did not ask. The keemun tasted as it should and I enjoyed it without milk.

I don't have a good photograph of the scones and pastries (shortbread cookie, cakes, macarons). The scones were a bit dry. I was disappointed with the macarons. Now, let's talk about the delicious cucumber sandwiches! (There were only two sandwiches available on the day we went - cucumber and chicken salad. I don't eat chicken so I cannot speak for that sandwich.) What did I like about the cucumber sandwich? Fresh, flavorful bread, thin slices of cucumber, and a judicious amount of cream cheese.

The tea is priced at $20 for one person and $35 for two. Download the tea menu.

August 01, 2014

Buzz about NYC tea rooms

"New York is a city steeped in love for coffee, but for some folks, java just isn't their cup of tea." This is Lilit Marcus's opening sentence for his WSJ article on tea shops and cafes in the city. The article contrasted tea rooms and shops with more formal afternoon tea experiences at city hotels. I have not been to many of the latter in New York. Palais des Th├ęs, Teavana, Press Tea, and Bellocq Atelier were mentioned. I Frenched my day at Palais des Thes and enjoyed afternoon tea at Press Tea. A visit to Bellocq Atelier is on my bucket list. For the time being, I follow their Instagram account.

Surprisingly, The article did not mentions Tea Drunk where I got drunk (on tea) after 10 steepings!

The Times also reported on the NYC tea scene recently, but only profiled one tea room.  Have you watched the video of a tea lesson by Timothy Hsu of The Mandarin's Tea Room?  I took a lesson with Timothy (thanks, Jee) and it will be the subject of my next review -- stay tuned.

Which tea places did the WSJ and the Times miss in their profiles?

July 25, 2014

Instagram accounts for tea lovers

It was fun to peruse the Instagram accounts featured in Tasting Table's article "Instagram Accounts Food Lovers Need to Follow." I wondered, What are the Instagram accounts tea lovers should follow? Here is a round-up.

I like bellocq teas but love their photos more!
Web | Instagram

Experience tea around the world through Kathy's photos.  There are a fair amount of food photos, too.
Web | Instagram

Another tea itinerant is Jee of Oh, How Civilized. Great photography and original (delicious) recipes. Also, Jee is a reliable resource for fun and special experiences in NYC.
Web | Instagram

I learned about this new tea company on Kathy YL Chan's blog. Photographs of gorgeous packaging and tea landscapes abound.
Web | Instagram

Nicole knows the business side of tea well! She's the new manager of Tea Drunk in the East Village.
Web | Instagram

Lu Ann at The Cup of Life has written about her top tea Instagram ssers. Who are you following on Instagram for tea?  Please share your favorites in the comments.

P.S. I don't have a Notes on Tea Instagram account but you can find me @localecologist.

July 09, 2014

Iced tea on Pinterest

I realized my daydream of a Pinterest board about iced tea.  Follow the board for updates!

June 24, 2014

Review: Miansai Tea Bar

On a stroll through Soho I went into Miansai, a jewelry boutique fronted by a tea shop which opened in December 2013. I was tipped off to its existence by an Oh, How Civilized post.  Coincidentally, 33 Crosby was the former home of the pop-up In Pursuit of Tea shop!

The tea choices - sourced from Tea Chai Te - are great! Black, green, masala chai, puer. And even kombucha on tap. I ordered an iced papaya and pineapple tisane. Although the tea did not taste like either fruit, it was bright, tart, and refreshing.

I also like the shop's decor. The copper cups would showcase matcha really well, I think. And as a plantphile, I was drawn to the staghorn ferns on the wall.

I'll be back - so many teas to drink.

P.S. For another perspective on this tea bar, read the Tea Happiness review.