The Dome is a great place for a meal with a great atmosphere. The building is lovely with high ceilings and intricate stained-glass. Unfortunately, the focus at this establishment is not on the actual tea and more towards the fancy dining experience. The tea room itself is quite grand with high ceilings, fancy carpeting, exquisite drapes and a lovely view of downtown Edinburgh through the window. When I asked to smell a sample of the teas on the menu for the afternoon the server told me politely that they didn’t offer that. I really wanted a green tea but I was informed that it was served with boiling water but that I would be able to have a flask of cold water if I wanted an infusion at a lower temperature. The tea was served in very very hot metal kettles which were exceedingly difficult to pour, even with the paper towels offered to wrap around the handle. I was disheartened to see that my leaves were already in the kettle with the boiling water and had a flask of ice water delivered to me a little while later. Needless to say, the tea was very bitter. The metal kettles also didn’t provide a way to stop the infusion so I was made to drink a green tea throughout my meal that had been infusing the entire time. However, this did necessitate me trying this tea with milk and a bit of sugar, which was a unique experience but I much rather have a tea with no additives. Adding sugar give my tea an unpleasant aftertaste, I find. The food offered was pretty standard afternoon tea fare with nothing too fancy. Sandwich types included egg, salmon, beef, and sliced ham- nothing that I wouldn’t be able to easily put together at home myself. The server was not able to tell me what all the desserts were because one was “too difficult to pronounce”. I found that the scones were too cakey for my liking. Overall, I am disappointed that I paid a premium afternoon tea price (18 pounds per person) for a very standard afternoon tea experience and ruined tea. The atmosphere makes “The Dome” worth checking out but I would not recommend staying for the full afternoon tea.
This tea location has a lovely Alice in Wonderland theme to it. There are two tea rooms- one being “wonderland forest” themed with a dark forest landscape (unfortunately this was just printed on the wall and the images/scenery were distorted from up close)- the other being “wonderland castle” themed with a traditional tea room decor and white and red plastic roses on the wall. The centre-piece in the “wonderland forest”-themed room was the fully set tea table upside-down on the ceiling- a call to the Mad-Hatter’s tea party, I’m sure. The menu is quite extensive with lots of sandwich and pastry options. On my visit, I ordered the traditional afternoon tea for 1 which came with a sandwich, salad, root vegetable crisps and a high quality 1st flush black tea. The reason that I have to give a low rating to this so-called “tea room” is that the leaves were simply thrown in a pot without any way to remove them after the infusion time was over. This led to a lovely first cup but the subsequent cups were bitter, with the last one being un-drinkable. This would be a nice place to visit if you were planning to order a tisane which can infuse indefinitely. The loose leaf tea sold here comes in flimsy paper bags with a large cellophane window and the bags are not labelled with the name of the tea.
This is a tea room located on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile so it is a nice place to visit during a busy day of exploring the city. The tea room has a cluttered vintage decor including a type writer, needle point pieces of work on the wall and old books on shelves. At the entrance there is a glass case featuring an old petrol ration book. The menu has a great selection of food- breakfast (including a full traditional Scottish breakfast), lunch (Sandwich rolls and soups) and sweets. I ordered a cream tea and the waitress seemed surprised when I asked to smell the teas before choosing one. She brought me some small samples in the cream and jam holder glass containers but I found that they were strongly scented from their last dish-wash and had trouble smelling the actual tea. I selected the Scottish Breakfast which was brought to me steeping in a pot without an infuser. I had no choice but to drink an over-infused brew when I got to my second and subsequent cups. The scones were a bit to flaky for my liking and the cream was not the traditional clotted cream that most tea places serve with scones. The raspberry jam provided with the scone (there is no jam flavour selection) was quite delicious! I was also able to try a bite of the carrot cake which was incredibly moist and very good. I would go back but more so for the desserts and food than the tea.
Staff is very knowledgeable about the teas. There is an amazing selection of non-flavoured teas and the flavoured teas are impressive as well. This seems like a place that would not be afraid to use a flavouring to complement a high quality tea. Tea is prepared at the appropriate temperature and the staff will ensure that it is never over-infused. The store is set up to do gaiwan infusion as well, if you wish. You can have your own tea tray and little yixing pot.
I always have a pleasant time when visiting Anteaques whether I am there for a loose leaf tea purchase or to have a sit down tea. They don’t offer a formal afternoon tea or high tea package but you can still order a pot with scones and a variety of sweet treats. The selection of jam with the scones is very interesting- I had a violet jam and my friends choose apricot and raspberry. Fancy truffles are also offered in pistachio, honey and almond, coconut, strawberry, salted caramel and a selection of others. There are seasonal treats such as mince pies and candied clementines. The owner is very friendly and always greets customers with a smile. He is very passionate about tea and his tea shop! Of course the decor of the shop is antiques themed. Certainly a most interesting place to sit down for tea. The selection of loose leaf teas is quite impressive and I find the prices to be quite good as compared to other tea shops in Edinburgh.
I was greeted at the door and given two different oolong samples to taste as well as some dry leaf samples to take home with me. There is a limited selection of strait teas. Small tea samples are available for purchase and are packed well in a air-sealed package. The owner is very knowledgeable about the teas that he sells.
I went to this location for afternoon tea. There is a nice tea room in the upstairs area. There was a nice tea selection. I felt that the quality of the sandwiches and treats provided was lacking especially for the relatively high priced full afternoon tea service. Also, the cream provided for the scones seemed like regular whipped cream- not the nice thick Devonsire cream that I am used to having with my scones at high tea. I ordered the special afternoon tea that came with a gift of a box of bagged sencha tea to take home after my visit.
I really liked that they had some rare/expensive tea books available for browsing while you’re waiting for your meal.
Very good selection of teas. Staff very knowledgeable. The tea is served with water at the correct temperature and infused for the correct amount of time. A timer is provided at the table if you have your tea infuse at your table. There is a very good selection of lunch-type items for purchase and lots of sweet treats to accompany your tea. Scones are made fresh in the store. On the day that I visited both blueberry and cheese/onion scones were made on site. The prices are a bit steep but I believe that it is well worth it.
Friendly and knowledgeable staff. Not very many spots at this location to sit and enjoy your tea, but this is understandable as it is within a mall. Recently, I’ve been noticing that the staff have been over-filing my tea purchase requests by up to 6 grams. They’ve been better with this in the past, always asking me if more was okay or mentioning that a particular tea was quite heavy and I that might want a few extra grams (important especially when I’m purchasing 12-gram sample sizes). I’m hoping that this is just the result of recent staff turnover and will improve in the future.
Staff are very understanding and patient even if I’m passing by just to try the Tea of the Day (I like to try many samples so I can see which tea I would like to order next).
Today I went to Bon The Place for a Japanese Tea Ceremony. The instructor was very knowledgeable about the matcha she was serving and instructed my friend and I on the meaning of each step in the ceremony. We got our own little private room in the back of the shop for the entire ceremony with very nice traditional music playing in the background. We even got a chance to try the entire preparation on our own to serve to each other! I would highly recommend this experience for anyone who is interested in the traditional methods of preparing matcha.
I have visited this shop in the past and only have good things to say. I am always served a sample of the day while I’m browsing the teas. I am really impressed at the selection of teas there are available.