Cha-an’s Harmonious Herbal Libation & Bathroom Surprise

Cha'An Tea House St. Marks Tea

For Asians, drinking tea is like breathing: we simply CANNOT live without it. Although I am just fine brewing, steeping and sipping my own tea at home, I decided to check out how it’d feel to actually have someone create a pot of tea, just for me.

Cha-an is already pretty popular in general — there are plenty of rave reviews on Yelp and all over the ‘nets. Plus, I’ve tried twice before to be seated on a weekend night, and seriously, no dice!

I was a bit surprised to see that their menu was mostly food and not so much tea — I was expecting a full-on teahouse with like 1,000 different types of tea!

Cha'An Tea House St. Marks Tea
So they use super-fancy Kangen water, fresh from a NYC tap! I feel so special!
Cha'An Tea House St. Marks Tea
While the tea list was a bit shorter than expected, a good cup of tea was still possible to be had!

If you’re into the whole traditional Japanese way of interior décor, you’ll love how Cha-an looks and feels. From the moment you hike up those steep wooden steps to when you sit your bum down on their wooden mahogany seats, it feels like you’ve temporarily absconded to Kyoto or something.

Cha'An Tea House St. Marks
Miss Japan or just want to go there? Get a taste of it with a quick Cha’An visit!

Plus, like in normal Japanese culture, there is full attention on attentive, courteous customer service. However, my waiter, nice as he was, didn’t speak English every well — I had to ask whether a certain tea was bitter over another serveral times to get my question across. Still, he was super nice and all smiles.

Honey Phoenix Tea – Fair, but really, can't you do better?

I ordered the Honey Phoenix Tea, which was pretty pricey at $10 a pot. The tea was a touch bitter, but not unpleasantly so. There is also no actual honey in it, fyi, as the name would suggest, nor does Cha-an have sugar or honey on hand if you wanted to sweeten.

Cha'An Tea House St. Marks Tea
Mellow, earthy and refreshing: you’re in for a relaxing experience for sure!

Still, the tea was enjoyable and came in a gorgeous porcelain teapot. The tea has a fruity aroma about it, and does smell sweetly of honey nectar.

The aftertaste was light and pleasant, unlike many teas that give me a chalky feel in my mouth. It went down smooth and was relaxing to sip.

Though I felt that $10 was a bit overpriced, I did a bit of research and found out that Honey Phoenix tea leaves typically go for $43 per 100 grams (3.5 oz.). after seeing that, I guess it is kinda worth my money! I’m definitely too poor to make it a hait though!

p.s.: Cha-an’s bathroom has the Toto Washlet seat cover, which is basically an AMAZING motorized toilet extension that opens, flushes, acts like a bidet, heats up, and closes on it’s own, so if you’ve ever wanted to actually try one out, here’s your chance (yes I know, I’m a huge dork!).

Did I mention it heats up?? I would probably just visit to go sit on that porcelain throne again!

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