It was recently brought to my attention that not every writer is fueled by coffee.
In an attempt to expand my horizons, I visited a place aimed at tea snobs to see if it makes a good docking point for London based scribes.
Never heard about Amanzi Tea? Well in their words it was “Inspired by the heritage of tea, and motivated by endless possibilities, Amanzi Tea proudly presents a lifestyle experience within the world of tea.”
As you would expect, Amanzi Tea has a large selection of leaf based brews available to order. Not knowing anything about tea, I won’t comment on the quality of their offerings, although I have been told that they are very good. What I can comment on is their latte, which I found watery and lacking in taste.
The décor is minimalist and modern and nothing like a traditional British tea house. The walls carry mounted mirrors and reminded me of dentist’s waiting room. Think IKEA not grandmother’s living room. Amanzi Tea is usually pretty busy on weekends and attracts a trendy crowd and young, pregnant women. Or at least it did the few times I went in.
A good place to write?
Not really. The resemblance to Starbucks does not go beyond the clean, modern interior and vast selection of drinks.
This is not the sort of place where staff are happy for you to sit down with your typewriter and unfinished manuscript. They were friendly enough, but did come to my table to inquire if I’d finished my latte just 20 minutes after I’d sat down.
The tables are small and made to host a few cups of tea, not a laptop and notepad. On top of this, my table had a wonky leg and I had to push it down with my foot to be able to use it. Not that I’m suggesting all of their tables are wonky, but mine was and it made my stay less pleasant.
On a positive note, I found the music perfect for writing. Timeless tunes that go in one ear and out the other. Frank Sinatra was playing during one of my visits.
In short, Amanzi Tea was not designed with the needs of the writer in mind and for this reason I wouldn’t recommend it as a place to write in London.
The essential details
Price for a single espresso at the bar: £1.60
Free Wifi: Yes
London, England Tea Store
24 New Cavendish Street
London W1G 8TX