New idea! New idea! (oh alright, give credit where credit is due...Josh came up with the idea). But I'm adding on a new category on my blog called Local Spotlight. If I encounter an awesome place / activity / person in Seattle, or the nearby area, I'm going to share it. This will mostly be for my Seattlelite friends, however, it could also serve as a way to convince friends & family that read this to come visit me. Excited? I am!
Local Spotlight: Cederberg Tea House
As some of you may know, Josh and I enjoy a good cup of tea. Remember my Tale of Teas, or Tea for Two posts? Well, if you didn't know, you know now: Josh and I like tea. Oh sure, you think because we are in Seattle we should only like coffee. Well, phooey!! You know we do like other beverages besides coffee. Tea being one of the top! In fact, I liked tea before I liked coffee (insert gasp!).
Let's take a moment down memory lane, shall we? I'll always remember when I realized I liked tea. It's actually the perfect tea-spirational story. I was in London visiting my sister, and we stopped for an afternoon tea. We didn't stop because we were trying to be all British and have a "spot of tea," but because it was cold, dreary, and we were tired. I ordered tea since that seemed like the right thing to do. Then, I noticed my sister adding milk and sugar to her tea. I shrugged to myself and followed suit. Boy was I glad I did that! I finally discovered the trick to making that tea "oh so good" (in my humble opinion).
Anyway, tea is good. I like tea. You get the idea. Now to Cederberg...
The other day, when I was looking through my blog reader, I came across an article on Serious Eats about a new tea shop in town - right in my very own neighborhood, Queen Anne. Tea, you say? In Queen Anne? I must read on! My interest was sparked even further when I learned it was South African. Say what? Tea from South Africa? This crazy cool. I need to try this place pronto. (Not to mention, the lack of tea shops near home ever since our dear Tea Cup left town...that definitely upped the ante).
After reading a bit more, I learned it was roobios tea. I had chai roobios before, and really liked it. But Cederberg does something very unique - shots of roobios. Yes, you heard me...shots of roobios. Apparently they grind the roobios so that it's super fine, then they pull a shot through an espresso machine just like you would a coffee espresso shot.
Extremely curious, I sent the article to Josh with the intent of taking us there over the weekend. And that's exactly what we did.
When we walked in, we were greeted with friendly welcomes. It was a warm day, so we both opted to try something iced. Natasha, who we learned was one of the owners (alongside her mother, Cecile), kindly walked us through our options. Of course we got the roobios. I ordered an iced roobios latte, while Josh picked the Rooios Fresh (roobios shot + apple juice).
After picking our beverages, we decided we should fill our bellies with something sweet. I was thrilled to hear South Africans have a sweet tooth (if you know me, you'll know that I have a big sweet tooth, so big as to say I have sweet teeth even). But looking in the case, there we so many decisions! And I didn't know a single one of them (ok, except maybe the tart), but Natasha patiently explained each one to us. We ended up with the malva pudding.
So this malva pudding, it looks like just a plain old loaf cake. But wait until you taste it. It's magical. Suddenly your taste buds are melting in pleasure. After Josh took a bite, he looked at me with his eyes wide open and pointing at the cake. Being that l've known him for 10 years, I knew this was the "This is so good, I can't wait to finish my bite to tell you" signal. I agreed; this cake was mighty fine. (Note: Malva pudding is int he bottom left of the pastry case photo).
As we finished up, Natasha came out and asked how we were doing. The answer: super, great, & awesome!
One trip wasn't enough for us, though. We returned for breakfast the next weekend. This time, I tried out the hot roobios latte. Josh got the same. Another winner! They are so cute when you dine in. They bring your tea on a little tray. Isn't that nice? Along with a little cookie - yum!
I love the look of the teas with the layers. (Josh wants you to know that the sausage roll is also quite delicious.) The roobios tea is hard to describe. It reminds me of a Thai Iced Tea in a way, but the taste is obviously somewhat different. It's sweet, but not crazy sweet (they do add honey & cinnamon, mind you), somewhat earthy, but totally smooth. Not sure if that does it justice, so why don't you just try it?
Did I mention yet how nice they are? Oh? I did, did I? Well, they are! Look at their smiling faces (below). Oh, and here's a peek inside. (Sorry for the blurry pictures, I forgot my camera and just had a iPhone). Oh yea, they are indeed both from South Africa, so you can't get any more authentic. Okay, maybe you can...the ground roobios tea is from Cederberg, the region in South Africa where the roobios tea is grown.
You know when you hear of something, how it then just starts coming up? That's what happened here. After our first visit, Josh came across an article. Then I saw more articles. So popular, check them out in the news:
- Seattle Coffee Works: A Tea Lover in a Coffee World
- Serious Eats: First Look Cederberg
- Seattleite: In the Know: Cederberg Tea House Brings a Taste of South Africa to Queen Anne
- Daily Candy: We're All Steamed Up Over the Cederberg