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The Tea Haus is located in the North Cross Mall area just off of West Anderson Lane. The Tea Haus is an award-winning coffee house that is recognized for providing intimate and communal settings for tea/coffee drinkers and snackers alike.
They are known for their authentic originality in conceiving exceptional hand-crafted drinks! For example, their lemonades are hand-squeezed daily. Their cold brew is really brewed for 24 hours. So is their Horchata Latte! If they sell out, then they sell out for that day! Their haus-teas are steeped for a certain amount of time at a specific temperature, which is unique to each tea. They do this because they know that it makes a difference that you can taste! Thus, the Tea Haus is the proud recipient of the Austin Chronicle’s 2016 Editor’s Choice for Best Tea spot!
The Tea Haus’ Mint Mojito Iced Coffee consisted of iced Americano, freshly whipped sea salt cream and fresh mint. I loved the milder, creamy flavor that gently flowed down the back of my throat! The mint added a coolness that complimented the iced Americano! In fact, this would be perfect for a person who has a sore throat! It has a variable sweetness, which is great for people who limit their sugar intake!
Their Sea Salt Thai Iced Tea, which is made with Thai iced tea and fresh whipped sea salt crème was awesome! The salt accentuates the sweetness in the cream which creates a punchy medley of sweet, salty and sour that responds beautifully with the Thai iced tea. The Sea Salt Thai Iced Tea also has variable sweetness.
The Boba Milk Tea—commonly referred to as bubble tea—originated from Taiwan in the early 1980’s. The Boba Milk Tea is made with Ceylon black tea from Sri Lanka because it has the perfect fragrance, aroma and flavor. The tea is steeped to perfection before they add non-dairy creamer and house-made boba—which are dipped in haus-made honey syrup. The boba are cooked every two hours to ensure freshness. On their own, the larger tapioca balls don’t have much flavor. However, the haus-made honey syrup adds a beautiful sweetness that creates a delightfully balanced drink! It is important to note that this boba provided a nice snap upon the first bite before I noticed the subsequent honey-sweet chewiness. This is definitely the best bubble tea I have ever had!
The Basil Fried Chicken, which is a half-pound of freshly cut chicken, is haus-marinated in soy sauce, egg, rice-wine, and garlic then fried in a basil infused oil. Next, the chicken is drained and sprinkled with a special haus-seasoning and sliced basil. It is served with a lime and speared chopsticks. The chicken has a composed flavor of salt and pepper with a distinct basil essence. It is light, yet packs a very flavorful punch! When you taste it, you feel like you are half-way around the world! It’s no wonder that the Basil Fried Chicken is an award-winner!
I was fortunate to be able to try the Strawberry Brick Toast! It is made with freshly baked bread that is sliced and topped with haus-made butter and cream before it is toasted. Next, it is topped with strawberries, condensed milk and powdered sugar. The strawberries tasted naturally sweet with a minimized tartness due to their highly-developed ripeness. Their flavor was enhanced by the powdered sugar and the creamy sweetness of the brick toast. In a word, tart-tastic!
It was a really hot day, so I tried the Tea Haus’ Old-Fashioned Lemonade, which is made from freshly-squeezed lemons. It is perfectly sweet with an impressive tartness that is incredibly refreshing! The Strawberry Lime Lemonade is made from freshly-squeezed lemons, limes, and macerated strawberries. Because it contains less citrus, the Strawberry Lime Lemonade has a milder tartness. While my favorite was the old-fashioned lemonade, both were equally bright and refreshing!
The Ham & Cheese Brick Toast is made with freshly baked bread that is sliced and topped with haus-made butter and cream before it is toasted. Next, it is topped with condensed milk, honey ham and mozzarella cheese which is a delightful salty-sweet combination of yumminess! I mean this is the kind of dish you write home about! It’s like eating a ham and cheese kolache—only better!
In the end, I was absolutely thrilled with the Tea Haus! I feel like it’s one of Austin’s hidden gems! They are truly providing a taste of something that is almost intangible in our society—authenticity.
PHOTOGRAPHY: DESIREE DUNNING