Yes, it’s quite hard to screw up a cup of tea. However, there are a lot of different kinds of tea, not just the typical black and green. Whether it’s a cheap black tea you want or a fancy one, here are some places in New York City that have you covered in both tea and a great addition to January, National hot tea month, and that’s food!
Rudy’s Pastry Shop
Rudy’s Pastry Shop has been a staple German bakery in the Ridgewood, Queens community since 1934. It is an old school style bakery with modernity, yet still cozy feel.
While the tea is not fancy, take the time to have the Black Forest cherry cake along with that hot tea. The cake is plentiful with cherries, and it is exceptionally moist. The frosting appeared to be whipped cream based, was fluffy, and not too sweet.
Kung Fu Tea UES
I do not eat tapioca pudding, so I was skeptical a few years ago when someone recommended that I try a Taiwanese drink called Bubble Tea. It is a milk based tea that has little tapioca balls or fruit jellies. The balls are the reason for the bigger holed straw with a slanted end. The balls are sucked up with the tea, and they make for something interesting to chew on.
Created in Taichung, Taiwan, in the 19080’s, bubble tea was influenced by the Japanese cold coffee. Bubble tea began to grow in worldwide popularity in the 1990’s. It can be served hot or cold in many different flavors. Kung Fu Tea on 1st Avenue in the Upper East Side serves a wide variety of bubble teas.
Himalayan butter tea is the most exotic in NYC so far that I’ve found, especially in a less trendy, cultural sense. The tea is served hot. Traditionally it is made with yak butter. When you take your first sip, it is shocking because it is frothy, and it tastes like salty butter. At the second sip, you get used to the taste because it begins to be mixed with the actual tea. Throughout the rest of the cup, it tastes just like it is, butter tea. It is excellent! Have it at Himalayan Yak in Jackson Heights after your meal or even if you just want to go in and try it to warm up. You won’t regret it!
Although I was not a huge fan of Moroccan mint tea made with green tea and not brown like in Morocco, I loved the turkey and brie sandwich. Brie is one of my favorite cheeses, so I was a bit biased though.
OK Cafe is a little different in that it is one of the few cafes left nowadays that does not welcome the use of electronic devices for long periods of time. There is not a lot of space in the cafe anyways, but thanks to this rule, everyone who goes is guaranteed a seat.
These are just a few teas that you can get during National hot tea month in New York City. Of course there are many more, so check back, and of course discover for yourself the many teas of New York City!