The English Tearoom :: Where British taste meets tea passion
A few years ago, after tasting a very good Darjeeling tea, I converted from a tea drinker to a tea lover. That was the first time I started to look scornfully at tea bags. I have liked Darjeeling for a long time, but last year I was offered a very good Oolong tea with osmanthus blossoms in Singapore. Here I started to understand Chinese tea culture and now I pity people who roll their eyes when I’m gushing about tea ;).
Later on I went to Shanghai, where I tasted a very special Taiwanese black tea which caused a short explosion in my brain. I didn’t even ask for the price, I just bought it.
Which was a good idea because it wasn’t really a steal at 25€/40g, and if I had known that I would not have even tasted it. Thanks to the fact that I’m also very bad at mental arithmetic, I calculated the real price much later. First I was a little bit shocked, but this tea was really excellent. And as Oscar Wilde says, „I have just the simplest taste, I’m always satisfied with the best“! In other words, I had become bit by bit a real tea snob :D!
Now that I was aware of that fact, I had to find a really good tea shop in Germany to satisfy my sophisticated needs.
After trying some shops, I was very happy to discover The English Tearoom, which is in my opinion the hottest tea spot in Stuttgart. It’s a lovely tea shop in the Heusteigviertel in Stuttgart.
When I walked down the Weißenburg Street a few months ago, I asked myself, where should this shop be, but then l noticed the British Flag above the door.
Then I stepped in and was stunned: the shop was even cuter than I thought, based on what I’d seen on the home page.
I don’t know a lot about Feng Shui, but if you ask me, I’m sure that the Feng Shui of The English Tearoom is absolutely fabulous!
We were warmly welcomed by the owners Lynn and Christian Hazlewood.
And even they were busy with other clients at the moment we arrived, somehow they managed to let us feel served and acknowledged!
This was the first time for me in a tea shop in Germany that I was also allowed to taste the tea. Till now, I made this experience only in Asia (in Singapore and Shanghai), where the tea culture seems to be more advanced and things like this go without saying. In other tea shops you are just allowed to smell the tea for a second or two.
In The English Tearoom you are offered a sample in a finest, hand-made porcelain teacup, accompanied by typical English cookies and sweets.
If you have a sweet tooth like me, then you are just at the right place: various kinds of jam, short bread, chocolate, cookies, different kinds of fudge and much more dangerously tempt one from the nicely decorated shelves and cupboards.
Ok, back again.
And if you are also looking for a suitable teacup or tea set, here you can find the right one for you.
A couple of years ago I realized that you need a nice teacup to enjoy tea. As you cannot drink champagne from a plastic glass, so you cannot drink a special tea from a boring cup that you could use for anything else! A real tea lover cannot do this to his/her tea! And on my last visit last Saturday I also bought a new lovely teacup to enhance my collection.
And last but not least, of course the tea assortment.
I was really surprised, how many different sorts of tea they offer here. And this is the best quality I’ve found till now. If you don’t know Oolong, you can start to explore it here. Here you can buy a sample set with different Oolong, green, white or black teas, so you can find out, what you like most.
My favourites at the moment are the Milky Oolong, a half-fermented black tea, processed with milk steam or the Iron Goddess of Mercy, which I first tasted in Singapore. Another current recommendation of mine is the Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling from the harvest 2012.
But if you want to taste something very special, then just ask for the ruby black tea from the moon lake from Taiwan, which I mentioned above. It’s really an extraordinary aromatic and malty black tea. I tried to find it in Stuttgart, but nobody knew this tea. So I asked Lynn and Christian. This tea was also new to them, but fortunately they followed my hint and were also so enthusiastic about it, that they managed to order and now you can get it at their shop! Now I’m maybe ready to share this delicious tea with Mr. G, as I know, I can buy fresh supply at The English Tearoom ;).
The next time I’m going to ask them about the oolong with osmanthus which is also a delicious tea and which I couldn’t find till now.
And at this point I must say, all these things make this shop so special: it’s cosy and familiar. There is no queue, no shopping off-the-shelf, no bustle. You are served with competence, with a smile and with real joy! And this makes the difference because here your personal taste matters, so it’s not just buying tea, it’s an experience.
My tea recommendations at the moment:
Photography by Mr. G & me
Location: The English Tearoom