cafe, Farm Girl, japanese, Lagu, london, matcha, matcha latte, matcha powder, Palm Vaults, restaurant, review, TimberYard, Tombo, Tsujiri
This guilt-free beverage has been painting Instagram green over the past few years. Those who know me will have noticed I’m
partial to obsessed with matcha tea. When I quit coffee 3 years ago, I needed something to fill the void. That’s when this delicious green nectar came along.
If you’re new to matcha or want to know more, read my post 8 ways matcha makes your life better.
Now that’s all cleared up, here are the top 6 places to get your matcha fix. There’s also a handy matcha map of London at the bottom, so you can plot your next latte.
1. The Arty One
Timber Yard: Seven Dials
Just look at that frothy masterpiece. TimberYard’s sumptuous specimen has the perfect ratio of matcha to milk and can be quaffed with soya or almond if you prefer. Curl up on a sofa chair of your choice and they’ll bring you your matcha latte on a wooden slab, with a bottle of tap water. The only negative is this cafe is a hotspot for freelancers, so be prepared to sit elbow to elbow at its busiest times.
2. The One of Many Colours
Farm Girl: Portobello and Chelsea
£3.70 (£4.10 for hibiscus or butterfly lattes)
Before I get distracted by all the pretty colours, Farm Girl’s matcha latte is made with organic Japanese matcha powder and tastes perfectly creamy with almond milk. Although not technically matcha, why not try their blue ‘butterfly latte’, made from the dried flowers of a butterfly pea plant? Or their pink ‘hibiscus latte’? The downside of the Portobello cafe is there’s usually a queue (they don’t take reservations), but it’s definitely worth the wait.
3. The Trendy One
Palm Vaults: Hackney Central
Palm Vaults do take reservations, and they’re essential. The first time I rocked up to a full house and had to ‘make do’ with a matcha to go – a very respectable latte served in a seriously trendy cup. Palm Vaults is definitely the most Instagrammable on this list, with their retro theme and pink and green colour scheme. The next best thing to their matcha is their Thai butterfly tea named ‘blue moon’. Or if you’re caffeine fiend, try one of their colourful coffees like their ‘red velvet latte’ or ‘violet latte’.
4. The Authentic One
Imagine a Japanese restaurant, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It has a minimalist vibe with an air of calm. The owner of this gem, Atsuko Inoue, was inspired by her father and grandfather who ran a hotel in Tokyo. So of course an authentic establishment such as this would make a mean matcha – and very reasonably priced. Be sure to try some of their matcha ice cream while you’re here.
5. The Specialist One
Tsujiri: Chinatown and Soho
£4 (£4.80 for O-matcha)
If you’re matcha mad like me, Tsujiri is a must. From sundaes to shaved ice, it’s the only place I’ve come across selling exclusively matcha products (and a bit of mochi). Their latte is mouth-wateringly good, as you’d expect, but for a taste of the tea houses of Japan, sample their more traditional option. The ‘O-matcha’ – I can only assume the ‘O’ means ‘original’ – is prepared with ceremonial grade matcha from Uji, Kyoto (the good stuff). There’s no milk in it, so only attempt if you appreciate its bitterness.
6. The One
Tombo: South Kensington, Fitzrovia and Soho
This is my absolute favourite. An utterly divine matcha. And you get quite a lot of latte for your money. Tombo’s extensive list of matcha treats rivals Tsujiri’s, but also brings cake to the table. The matcha gateau is something else. You can also enjoy a Japanese take on afternoon tea, with an tantalising selection of sushi and matcha desserts. To top it off, it has a warm, friendly vibe and exquisite Japanese food.
Why are you still here? Go get yourself some matcha…
Yoga Panther x
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