Tag Archives: friendly

Fernandez & Wells, Somerset House

Fernandez and Wells, restaurant Somerset House
Kyoto Green Tea
Fernandez & Wells
Somerset House
Somerset House, originally a Tudor Palace, has been home to Elizabeth I, the Navy and the Royal Academy of Art. It has seen routs and masquerades, and has fallen into ruin – ‘…the haunt of spectres…magicians and murderers.’
The free tour gives an excellent overview of it’s extraordinary history.
It was fascinating to visit the lightwells – underground alleyways visible from the courtyard – and the ‘Dead Room’, with it’s Catholic gravestones.
Easy to see why Somerset House is used by film crews as an atmospheric London location.

The Courtyard is a fantastic space, unique in London. The East wing is home to an eatery, and very fine place for a cup of tea. (more…)

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Tea at Three, Dr Johnson’s House

Dr Johnson's House, Gough Square
Tea in the Parlour
Dr Johnson’s House

Number 17 Gough Square is the charming 18th century townhouse where Samuel Johnson compiled his ‘Dictionary of the English Language’.
It is well worth a visit to this small museum.

The rooms are laid out as they would have been in Dr Johnson’s time.
Great care has been taken to restore the wood-panelling to the original muted paint colours.

The house is peaceful and atmospheric, the library is my favorite room with its soft yellow paintwork and light flooding in from high windows. You can also leaf over a facsimile of the famous dictionary. (more…)

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Patisserie Deux Amis, Bloomsbury

Patisserie Deux Amis, Judd Street, Kings Cross
Green Tea
Patisserie Deux Amis

This delightful French cafe on Judd Street is easy to miss, so I was pleased to come across it on a stroll through Bloomsbury on a summer Sunday afternoon.

Patisserie deux Amis is pretty in a French cafe style, with bistro chairs, white paper table cloths, plaster cherubs, etched glass mirrors and sage green paintwork.

I ordered tea and sat by an open window in the back room, overlooking a small garden. It was lovely and peaceful, with a gentle breeze, a Chopin nocturne on R3 in the background – it felt good to have (more…)

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Damson, St. Giles High Street

Damson Cafe, St. Giles High Street
Silver Tips
White Tea

Damson is perched on the corner of New Compton Street and St Giles High Street. The hand-painted sign and soft grey-green painted woodwork make a refreshing, almost defiant, contrast to the branding in the imposing Stickle Brick fortress of Central St Giles in whose shadow it sits.

I received a friendly welcome and chose a pot Silver Tips White Tea from a list that included Jasmine Pearls, Earl Grey, English Breakfast, Chai and Rooibos. My pot of tea, which was brought to my table, was lovely, light and refreshing.

The pleasant interior is fresh and airy with high-shuttered windows. Recycled wood and stained-glass (more…)

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Salt, Covent Garden

Salt Covent Garden
Jade Cloud
Green Tea

**UPDATE MARCH 2014: Salt is sadly, now closed. It was a great little place; I wish the fellas that ran it all good luck and hope they will let Tea at Three know if they open up elsewhere.

Great Queen Street in Covent Garden, is dominated on one side by the massive Art Deco edifice of Freemasons Hall. In its shadow is a row where at no.31, William Blake, London’s great poet and mystic, learned his trade as an engraver. Today it is home to Stephen Jones, hat maker and some intriguing looking Freemason’s outlets.

Salt is nestled in between. This ‘Espresso, Lunch and Tea Bar’ prides itself on bakery, and, as I discover, the tea is pretty special too.

They have an excellent choice of brews with the optimum temperature and steeping time noted on the menu.


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Place-with-No-Name*, Caledonian Road

327 Caledonian Road
English Breakfast
327 Caledonian Road
Sitting on the top deck of the 91 bus one day, my Dad proclaimed that everything on the Cally is called ‘Caledonian’. He has a point. Caledonian Dry cleaners, Caledonian Kebabs, Caledonian Internet solutions.
The caff opposite the prison has it’s own idea – the ‘Breakout’. I imagine a tunnel leading to egg, chips, and a cuppa – the first taste of freedom!.

One day, I spot a new shop; freshly painted in slate-grey with bare woodwork and white tiles. I wait for a name to appear. Nothing for a while, then a small, hand-written sign in the window – ‘Scambled Eggs with Pancetta’. Hey a cafe! They will have tea! (more…)

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Poetry Cafe, Covent Garden

The Poetry Cafe, Betterton Street
Poetry in a Cup

Poetry and a cup of tea, a perfect combination:

“We had a kettle; we let it leak:
Our not repairing made it worse.
We haven’t had any tea for a week…
The bottom is out of the Universe”

Maybe not Kipling’s finest, but I was looking for a tea poem, and, coincidentally a kind tweeter sent it to me.

Poetry Place is the headquarters of The Poetry Society, an organisation that host various events, poetry readings, competitions, exhibitions etc. (more…)

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Camellia’s Tea House, Kingley Court

Camellia's Tea Room, Cafe Kingley Court
Camellia’s Tea House
Ceylon Orange Pekoe
Organic Green Tea

Kingley Court is a terraced atrium off Carnaby Street. Three floors of interesting and quirky independent shops include a book exchange, a rockabilly hairdresser and a walk-in back rub (a back massage followed by a tea – now there’s a thought!).

Camellias Tea House is on the top floor in a prime spot overlooking the central courtyard. Named after Camellia Sinensis – the tea bush – they have a huge range of teas artfully displayed in canisters, and lots of teapots and tea paraphernalia. The tea room is an inviting space, with a warm, intimate feel.


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Yumchaa, Tottenham Street

Yumchaa Tottenham Street, London

Yum Cha means ‘drink tea’ in Cantonese. Yumchaa in English means ‘to enjoy delicious loose leaf tea in relaxed and hip environment’.

Situated in a side street in Fitzrovia, Yumchaa is the perfect watering hole for a loose leaf lover. They are militantly anti-tea-bag and even have an inspiring ‘Drink Loose Leaf Tea’ manifesto.

The space is fresh and airy, with a big skylight at the back and large windows at front. Furnishings are stripped-back bare-wood and 70’s wallpaper retro.


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Orchard, Sicilian Avenue

Green tea Orchard Sicilian Avenue
Green tea
Sicilian Avenue

Finding myself in Holborn one evening, caught in a shower without an umbrella. A bit damp, sore feet and slightly peckish. In need of a cuppa and some sustenance. I cut across Sicilian Avenue heading to bus stop, but saw – Orchard – Vegetarian Kitchen and Grocer! The goddess of teatime is smiling on me!

A warm welcome, and minutes later, a pot of green tea!
I had intended to stay just (more…)

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