Thursday, November 3, 2011

Essencha -- fine teas, and good food, too

Metro area tea-lovers know that there's no better selection of fresh, loose-leaf tea than at Essencha Tea House in Oakley. You might find a greater variety elsewhere, but you can be sure that Essencha owner Tracy Monson (a real "tea person") selects only teas available in the season that they were harvested and processed. Nothing sits on the shelf there for months, losing flavor. You can choose from over 100 teas -- black, white, green, red and herbal -- either online or in person. I'm a black tea fan, drink a pot of it every morning with breakfast. One of my favorite varieties is Keemun, which you can get all around town, but which Essencha did not carry for months as they awaited the new season's crop. Happily, it's in now (Keemun breakfast, organic). I bought some of that as well as the hearty Irish breakfast blend.
Soup and Matcha Goddess Salad @ Essencha

My friends and I also enjoy the lunch menu at the Tea House. There's a homemade soup or two each day, a small but delicious selection of sandwiches, and two or three excellently composed salads. They also serve savory or sweet crepes and a few indulgent dessert treats. If you let them know in advance, you can try a more elaborate Afternoon Tea (sweet and savory snacks with your choice of tea), either European or Asian style.
Like many businesses in Oakley, Essencha has seen a drop in traffic over the past year or so due to the extreme disruption of street, sidewalk and road work along Madison Road. Thankfully, all that seems to be complete. One word of warning: the parking lot behind Essencha is hard pressed to handle the traffic for the Tea House and other shops in that block, but you can park across the street in the larger lot in front of Hugo's. Just be careful crossing busy Madison Road.
In short, Essencha is a healthy-foodie star among Cincinnati dining and shopping destinations!

Essencha is open seven days a week. Look for a special Chinese tea tasting on November 13th.  513-533-4832 for reservations or more info. Check out the website to order tea, too.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for the nice post, Pama! I thought of you when we did our black tea tasting a few weeks ago, as I think you'll love these new Kenyan teas we got in. We've also got some great (healthy) new Fall specials in--the chopped mushroom + veggie burger is my fave. Thanks again for your support and hope to see you soon!