The smell of tea envelops you as you walk through the doors of O’Ways Tea Café. The café is home to over 80 superb teas, with categories including green, white, oolong, black, fruit and herbal infusions, as well as uniquely-South African blends.
Owner, Lisa Tsai believes that tea is a platform for people to connect and O’ways’ partnerships with Nigiro Tea Merchants and Origin Coffee Roasting results in an excellent affiliation that will cater to your beverage dreams.
The eatery has a breakfast and lunch menu filled with tempting vegetarian options. Lisa and the team carefully design the menu according to seasonal produce and suggest a tea pairing for each item. I was wondering how I would choose from so many teas, but when I saw the words ‘coconut,’ ‘curry,’ and ‘vanilla,’ the food and tea pairing choice jumped out me like it was meant to be.
O’Ways believes that when you combine tea with the right vibes, the correct temperature, and the appropriate infusion time, that all of its wonders are unlocked. The station where tea is prepared provides three different water temperatures from 70 degrees, so you can be sure that your tea leaves will brew to perfection. Friendly and knowledgeable waitrons will inform you how long to steep your tea using an hourglass as a timer, and a tea light candle beneath the teapot at your table will help maintain the temperature of your drink.
The café compelled me to explore; its tea paraphernalia and attractive décor reminded me of tea cafés I frequented while I lived in Taiwan. The spacious café boasts an impressive drinks station, a gift shop, a large table especially for tea tastings or ceremonies, and a baby grand piano, which the owner sometimes plays. While you’re enjoying your drink, you’re invited to engage in a game of Chinese checkers, connect four, marble solitaire or chess.
The café hosts a tea club once a month, each highlighting one category of tea. The tea club is open to the public on the first Saturday of every month from 3:30 to 5:30 pm. Booking is essential.
Make your way through all the variants with O’Ways’ loyalty program. Enjoy nine drinks (tea or coffee,) collect a stamp on your card for each, and receive the tenth cup on the house.
Tea, coffee, tasty food, and relationships come together at O’Ways to create an experience that will delight your palette and lift your spirits.
When Monday–Friday 7:30 am – 5 pm, Saturday 9 am – 2 pm
Where Shop 2, Heritage House, 20 Dreyer Street, Claremont
Cost According to menu
Contact +27 21 671 2850, www.oways.co.za
Photography courtesy Jess Daley