Published on March 31st, 2015 | by Clarissa Waldron0
Amanzi Tea, Marylebone
Amanzi Tea first arrived into the heart of Marylebone in 2013 and from then it has been on a mission to revolutionise the tea market. Not quite in the way countless bubble tea shops have aimed to do however, but rather in its all-embracing gesture to everything that tea is. Basically, if you think you know tea, you probably don’t. There is much more to the drink than telling the difference between Jade Sword and Sencha Green or Earl Grey and a cup of builders brew.
Let’s go back to the beginning, for a moment, with a brief history of Amanzi. The company first started out in the US. Then Marylebone branch owner, wine specialist David Elghanayan, set up the flagship store on Cavendish Street before buying the US outlets. Amanzi in the US has since been phased out as Elghanayan and his team focus on perfecting the brand in the UK, where tea must undoubtedly be more appreciated than amongst the American palate.
In terms of its menu, Amanzi is a merge of Jing and Starbucks. Inside are sleek black seats and sofas surrounding a wood and glass panelled tea wall. Gone are the cups or mugs from which elsewhere to slurp your daily fix would be the norm. Here elegant, heavy glasses take centre stage.
No drink comes one way and Amanzi offer at least two ways to try each tea – hot, cold, iced or frapped. Even better, Amanzi’s teas actually taste how they smell, not a common feat as tea enthusiasts will certainly know and the measure is ensured by the staff’s passion and tenacity when concocting the recipes.
Oreo Cookie and Matcha with Nutella have been proven runaway successes.
Amanzi brings everything one could possible love about tea all to one place. It offers a wide variety white, green, oolong and black tea as well as an impressive and inventive menu of teas crafted to the Amanzi secret recipe. And that’s just on their signature tea wall where each of the tea blends is available to view, smell and buy to bring home in teabags or loose leaf.
On the opposite wall behind the counter, the drinks menu will ignite excitement in even the most dedicated coffee connoisseur. A selection of Matcha Green Tea Frappés, Tea Cocktails (minus the alcohol), Iced Tea Smoothies and Bubble Teas with a variety of choice flavours – opt for Fresh Tapioca Pearls if you like more chew, or go for a particular flavour bubble for a gentle pop while you drink – will have you struggling to choose just one.
During a two hour tour with Managers Marina Krstic and Tunde Sunai, I was shown Amanzi’s brewing methods, learned that its Bubble Teas are all made with green tea and about teas I’d never heard of, including Yerba Maté, a black South American tea offering up the most caffeine you can get from a tea leaf.
Highlights from this visit include the Lychee Mar-Tea-Ni Cocktail with Lychee Bubbles – a cool, refreshing drink that is sweeter than you might expect, and Honey Dew Melon Iced Tea with Blueberry Bubbles. Over in the loose leaf tea category, Roasted Almond is a winner, smelling delicious with notes of apple and cinnamon on taste. Orange Truffle is smooth and dark, tasting stronger than you might think for a tea with no caffeine. For someone who can’t go without a cup of coffee why not try the Daybreak – a black tea consisting of the aforementioned Yerba Maté, which is an excellent substitute for coffee, paired with milk and Amanzi’s own caramel .
Amanzi also have a Mummy and Me range, a unique approach to tea that allows pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers or mums with small babies or young children to drink tea along with their child, with the child’s tea served at a cooler temperature. The range is completely caffeine free and aims to be soothing and calming allowing mum and the little one to relax together. The traditional café staples of coffee, hot chocolate and flavoured syrups are also available.
With a focus on clean, sharp, minimalistic interiors Amanzi has built up a rapturous following amongst busy Marylebone locals, businessmen and mothers. Offering everything on their menu in takeaway format, as well as complimentary Wi-Fi and a downstairs seating area with plenty of room for kids and prams, Amanzi has become a welcoming haven for those who wish to escape the busy streets of London.
Having recently quenched the thirst of fashionistas at London Fashion Week in its collaboration with Ugg Australia (the perfect platform for this chic little teashop) and with more London stores in the pipeline, expect Amanzi to be the hottest thing in tea from now on, whether you like yours cold, iced, frapped, or, well, hot.
Amanzi Tea, 24 New Cavendish Street, W1G 8TXShare This Post