Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice enough place… it’s just that this is a coffee shop, not a tea room. And it’s obvious, even if they’re a nice coffee shop that caters more to its tea drinkers than most coffee shops might.
Basically, they have a small selection of loose leaf teas that they cram into a large teabag, staple or fold shut, and then drop into a mug of hot water on a saucer. They have some nice soups and such to go with it if you’re hungry. There are varied places to settle, including an old bank-like vault and the more traditional Western seating. It’s good to gather with friends and business associates. If I were rating a different type of shop I’d have rated it a bit higher. Just not for a tea room!
Saw this place on steepster and we went there today. Reviews are correct… the guy knows his stuff, and he and the woman (I assume they’re a couple) are very friendly and nice. The teaware they’ve got seems reasonably priced, too, as are the offerings. I love the selection and the atmosphere… while I love Dobra in Burlington, I’ve always found the room crowded and tiny… this place has lots of room by comparison, which is a plus for me. It seems louder, but that’s OK. I’ll definitely be going back there on a more regular basis!!
I was a bit disappointed by this place, but then again, I’ve been spoiled by the strong tea knowledge at Dobra in Burlington. Supposedly you can get High Tea here but when we popped in they were pretty much out of food altogether… not that we cared; we intended to go have dinner at a nearby restaurant anyway. I did try a chocolate oat ball thing which was good, and a matcha coconut thing which was /passable/ as a snack. (I’m not a huge green tea fan so that’s to be expected.) True tea selection is limited. Tulsi is really more noteworthy as a friendly, slightly new age-ish atmosphere with some interesting foods and a few oddball drinks like the increasingly popular bubble tea (which perhaps I should have tried). Personally, I’d prefer the Red Hen Bakery in Middlesex, VT for a similar type of room with far heartier snacks; I’m not the fat-free type of eater and RHB has the essentials, too. If you’re looking for a wide selection (or more exotic types) of tea, though, go elsewhere on both accounts.
Introduced to this place by my mother-in-law. Unfortunately, Hurricane Irene has forced it to a temporary location at the time of this writing. However, the owner is VERY knowledgeable about tea and worth asking for a story or two. I love the way he organizes his teas, too, by type and such. He also uses distinctive blue tins for two sizes of his offerings and also has lots of nifty teawares for sale. He taught me how to grow ginger of all things… Oh yeah, and often when you pop in, he’s got one or more teas brewed up, ready for his patrons to sample. I discovered Cream Earl Grey and Osmanthus Oolong there and went back for more.
The folks at Dobra really know their teas and how to brew them. That’s the primary reason I love to go there. There’s also a very nice variety with some good (albeit a bit expensive) foodstuffs to treat yourself to. The baklava left a bit to be desired but it was better than most when you’re not at a Greek festival or making it yourself. It’s dark there and there are a couple areas beaded off with cushions to sit on. My personal preference when with a couple people. Hard to come by, though, pretty busy and others like those areas as well. I think the majority of clientele are college kids but they’re the quieter types, discussing homework, ideas, poetry. The only thing I really don’t like about the place is how crowded and tiny it is… but the tea experience itself is worth cramming myself into the tiny spots. Thank goodness I’m small…