Warm Up With the Best Spots for Tea in Town
3. Kiran's Restaurant and Bar
Photo courtesy Kiran's This is just a sampling of the Indian-British fusion food at Kiran's.
For afternoon tea with an Indian flair, stop by Kiran's on Saturdays from 2 to 4 p.m. for a prix fixe menu of tea and treats. The meal starts with some of chef Kiran Verma's homemade masala chai, which she also sells dry in beautiful tins if you want to take some home. Next is an assortment of ladyfinger sandwiches and salads, followed by a nod to India's British colonists with some scones, jam and clotted cream. The meal ends with pastries and desserts and, if you'd like, another cup of tea with a splash of Grand Marnier. For $35 per person, an afternoon tea with chef Kiran's stellar Indian food is a steal.
2. The Path of Tea
Photo courtesy The Path of Tea Sit and steep in the relaxing atmosphere at the Path of Tea.
Houston's only completely organic teahouse and online shop allows you to order tea from a local purveyor from the comfort of your own home. Certified tea master Thia McKann passed away in 2012, but the staff continues to ensure that all their teas are organic and fair trade, and unlike most tea-sellers, The Path of Tea operates seasonally. Go online to view 13 pages of teas, tea paraphernalia and tea classes available for purchase and delivery (except for the classes, of course, which take place in the shop). The staff holds classes and tastings -- much like what you might experience at a wine bar, minus the hangover -- about ten times a month, and each class focuses on a different aspect of tea. If you just want a warm cup without a lecture, though, The Path of Tea can provide that, too.
1. Té House of Tea
Photo from VoicePlaces It doesn't get much better than the tea and eats at Té House of Tea.
Whenever I visit Té, I can't decide what I like better -- the tea or the food. Té stocks more than 130 different kinds of tea (many of them fair trade and organic) and offers an interesting menu of Korean, Jamaican, French, British and Indian dishes. Most items with meat can be substituted for soy, if that's your, er, cup of tea. Té likes to remind visitors that tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world, and their continental menu of both food and tea reflects that. The shop also likes to engage the community and get more people interested in drinking tea with open mic nights, swing dance classes and alternative art markets. On any given day, though, you'll find the majority of the crowd buried in a book or glued to a laptop, because the relaxing atmosphere makes Té a great place to caffeineate, refuel and get work done.