Jan 21, 2010

Afternoon Tea Addict - Taiwan, Taipei

While most of the people are having fun drinking during traveling,
I'm sipping my cup of tea with accompanying snacks,
Call me a weirdo, maybe an aged person...
Somehow tea interests me more than alcohol...
(P.S. I do drink liquor occasionally..either with food or...being forced in some ways...)

So I figured I'd better put up a small post with some of the tea places I've went to during my one month trip to Taiwan, Taipei,
Therefore, my afternoon tea journey begins~

Coffee Alley 咖啡弄-


Pretty popular place in east area,
I guess location-wise is one of its biggest advantages,
Besides that, Coffee Alley also serves some snack items such as waffles and brownie,
However, the waffles only taste mediocre.
In addition to that, Coffee Alley can get very crowded during busy hours, especially during weekends.


http://www.coffee-alley.com.tw/Home/Welcome.html
Locations and store numbers are listed on the bottom of their homepage.

Frog Coffee 蛙咖啡-


Unlike Coffee Alley, Frog Coffee is quite and spacious,
Free wireless service is also provided in the store so you can spend the whole afternoon sipping tea and surfing the web.



Frog Coffee also provides a special "parking area" for bicycles outside the restaurant,
You can hang the bikes on the wooden wall, neato.

http://cafe.frogfree.com/index.html
Locations and store numbers are listed on the website.

Smith & Hsu-


This is the hardcore place for afternoon tea,
Smith & Hsu has a wide selection of tea ranging from Asian oolong tea to European herbal tea.

Before selecting tea flavors, you even get a sample of nearly all the selections they have,
The purpose is for you to "smell" the tea leaves first before making the final decision-


One special note here,
Their scone is superb! After one bite and you'll know what I'm talking about-


It is so buttery, if pairing up with honey, imported butter, and mint tea,
Man....that's heaven...wait...!...that should be a food paradise!


http://www.smithandhsu.com/en/intro.php
Locations and store numbers are listed on the website.
Reservation highly recommended since they only have few tables inside the store.

Room for Dessert-


Cute tea pot-


Most of their dessert plates are decorated with cocoa powder,
I think the quality is pretty good for the price they charge, which is about $7 U.S. for a combination of dessert and tea.





Room for Dessert
Number 15, Alley 187, Section 1, Dun Hua South Road, Taipei, Taiwan
敦化南路一段187巷15號
02-2711-2465

Paul-


An expensive place with growing popularity despite the current economic downturn,
Probably a look into an interesting financial status among the customers dining at Paul.
I guess the rich people are not as hard hitted by the crisis compared to the majority of the residents in Taipei.

Tea-


Quiche-


Paul sells expensive bread and pastries,
When it first opened in Taipei, the place was famous for its imported bread loaves,
Yes you heard me, imported, all the way from France,
The most expensive loaf can costs up to $18 or more.

Strawberry millefeuille-


So does the taste worth the price?
I seriously think it's overrated,
Some bloggers have been to the stores in France and said the flavor is slightly different compared to the ones in Taiwan,
Can't blame Paul for that...after all, some ingredients, even the weather can be a factor of the taste,
However, their price really is not so wallet-friendly.

http://www.paul.fr/index.php

After comparing a few tea places, which one is my favorite?
I'll have to give it to Smith & Hsu,
The service was good, the scone was wonderful,
And most importantly, their wide selection of tea plus pairing notes,
Highly recommended.
One drawback though, they limit your tea sipping time to 2 hours,
Well, don't know about you, but 2 hours is good enough for me.

6 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I like the swirl at Coffee Alley but it ruins the tree pattern on top of the coffee:(. Smith & Hsu sure does looks serious on their tea though. So much to choose from!

    ReplyDelete
  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  4. To Eat Travel Eat~
    Yeah Smith & Hsu is a good place for tea! I was having fun sniffing all the flavor samples before selecting my tea.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Do you recall the name of the drink in the first picture?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hello~
    I think it might be macchiato!

    ReplyDelete