I had the fortune of a spare hour up town today between appointments and needed a drink and a sugar fix. Heading away from Princes Street, I took the quick 5 minute walk from the West End up Lothian Road to Bread Street and the wonderful ‘Tea Tree Tea’.
Their website is HERE (opens in new window) where you can see how they got started and order tea products online if you’re not from Edinburgh.
This is not the first time I have had a drink here, but this blog was not up and running at the time. When I entered the shop today, I immediately liked the relaxed atmosphere, filled with various types of clients. There were a couple of guys in the window in comfy tub chairs, some women on a sofa and some people at the tables taking advantage of the free wi fi. I like how there are different choices of furniture, something suitable for everyone and plenty of room around them.
I approached the counter and was greeted warmly by the owners, who I now know to be Jamie and Drew. I was being pretty indecisive about which tea to opt for and they helped me choose one after smelling a couple (which were too strong for me). I went for the ‘keemun’ Chinese tea at £2 for a pot. (also available to go / take out)
A selection of what others teas are available is HERE
The toughest choice was which of the freshly baked home made goods I sh0uld go for. All the traditional ones were there, but I was intrigued by the ‘honeymoon’ cake. (£1.80 sit in).
It was explained to me by Drew that it compromised a layer of chocolate, a layer of coconut, like the Bounty bar, a layer of caramel and then a layer of crispie cake on top ! I didn’t take much persuading that this was the cake for me and as he prepared my slice, I was asked if I liked coconut and caramel, to which I acknowledged that I did and he said, “well you’re ‘Bount – tae” in a Scottish accent, meaning Bounty chocolate bar (see what he did there ?) Groan 😉
Ok, I wasn’t there for the humour, but it’s the first place I’ve eaten at in a long time that there’s been some banter.
This was my tea and honeymoon slice as I sat on a comfy 2 seater sofa.
As regular readers of this blog will be aware, I am having a somewhat cake frenzy at the moment, but this slice even exceeded the Manna House and Sicilian Pastry Shop !
You can clearly see all the layers here and it was really an exceptional cake and now supercedes my other favourites (I had to resist getting another slice for later). I got a good 2 full cups of tea out of the pot and another half one, which makes it good value.
If I had more time, I would love to have relaxed in Tea Tree Tea with a paper for the afternoon and even hang on for dinner. They also do a selection of savoury sandwiches and panini’s and you can get all kinds of juices if tea is not your bag. Students came and went when I was there and office workers coming for a decent tea, a real mixed bag of customers.
The shop is open from 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 7pm at the weekends. I can’t express how good this place is, with exceptional service which is getting harder to find in Edinburgh these days. I will ALWAYS opt for here if I am in town, it’s only a few minutes from the Castle, the Grassmarket, Lothian Road, West End and well worth the steps getting there. Ignore the Starbucks and Costas of this world and try a local place for a nice cup of tea !
This is one of the first places I have reviewed that I cannot fault in the slightest – a first for I Love Edinburgh !!
Bread Street is off Lothian Road (West End of Princes Street), up past the Usher Hall and Lyceum theatre (diagonal from the Odeon Cinema, or those that are old and from Edinburgh, the old ABC !)
Scotsman article HERE
Suitable for disabled ? There is one step up to the shop, but the staff are more than happy to assist with wheel chairs and help you inside. There is plenty of room to manouvre once inside