Tea Journal is the perfect setting for catching up with good friends — there’s the tea-inspired chiffon cakes, the extensive selection of teas almost all of which come with free and unlimited refills for two cups and of course, the calm atmosphere that’s neither too noisy nor quiet. So, after an afternoon and evening out about Chatswood for my birthday, we settled into a cosy corner at Tea Journal to end the evening.
This time we try the Roasted Japanese Black Bean Tea ($8.00/pot). We’d first tried this tea at a shop in Takayama, Nagoya in Japan, thoroughly enjoyed it but did not purchase any (much to my later dismay).
Rather than use tea leaf to make true tea, this steeps the beans in the water creating an infusion with a translucent deep red colour and a subtly sweet nutty aroma.
The tea is served hot and has a pleasant, gentle sweetness that recalls a clear consomme-like red bean soup that you often get in many Asian desserts. The subtle sweetness and the overall nutty flavour creates for a very comforting tea — the kind you turn to just before bed or when you’re needing a pick-me-up.
Because there’s always room for more tea, I also try their new Hojicha Latte with White Chocolate ($5.00).
The hojicha is lightly sweetened (made according the level of sweetness requested) with a good depth of roasted flavour. The white chocolate is visible on top but does not add much additional creaminess or flavour to the latte than with just milk.
N tries a tea from their more extensive menu. This is the Dong Ding Oolong from the Fujian Province in China, considered ‘one of the most famous and finest Formosa Oolong’.
As promised in the description, the ‘fragrance and taste of this tea are wonderfully sweet and will leave you having more’. We found the first flush to have a very light, slight brothy flavour with minimal astringency, while the second flush extracted more floral notes that recall a light jasmine green tea.
We always have a good time at Tea Journal. It’s the perfect place to catch up with friends with a cup of tea and some cake.
Tea Journal is located at Shop 44 Chatswood Interchange, 436 Victoria Ave, Sydney NSW 2067.