Tea tasting!
posted October 27, 2015 5:19 PM   RSS | iCal | +googleCal

Sat November 21 at 11:00 AM, Fang Gourmet Tea
135-25 Roosevelt Ave, Flushing, NY, USA (Map & Directions)
No problem changing time or day - just wanted to move it to confirmed.
Is 11:00 too early for most folks? Is it better to taste tea before a meal? Can you tell I've never done a tasting?
posted by taupe to Meetup (38 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

I LOVE tea. I'd be very interested.
posted by miss-lapin at 1:28 AM on October 28, 2015

I'm in. Any ideas on locations?
posted by I-baLL at 4:53 AM on October 28, 2015

Neat - when that tea-tasting FPP to the Serious Eats article was posted that mentioned "a tiny tea shop in a Queens strip mall, where we settled in for a three-hour tasting of teas from all over China and Taiwan.", I wondered if it was anywhere near Dumpling Galaxy, or if it was worth using up a week's Ask-Me to track it down.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:29 AM on October 28, 2015 [1 favorite]

I am a fan of tea, but don't know of any place that lets you do formal tastings. Maybe a place where you can get a few pots of different tea and we all exchange?

Podunk tearoom is a relatively calm (but small) tea house in the east village. there's Cha-An for Japanese tea, and then a new Chinese tea place called tea drunk. I'm sure there are other places we could find. and if we call a head we maybe able to arrange a sampling.

(yes all of these are in the east village... I live here!)
posted by larthegreat at 5:31 AM on October 28, 2015 [2 favorites]

Found the website for Plais des Thes and then nearly fainted at the prices. ;)
posted by Karmakaze at 5:48 AM on October 28, 2015

Yeah, I'm sure we'll get a better bang for our buck somewhere in Queens or Brooklyn than in Manhattan.
posted by oh yeah! at 6:01 AM on October 28, 2015

Great idea--I would come!
posted by ferret branca at 6:56 AM on October 28, 2015

I haven't yet been there (and desperately want to try it out!), but Bellocq looks lovely. Accessible by the mythical G train or East River Ferry. I don't know if they're just retail or whether they have a small sitting area.

Palais des Thés is completely and totally worth it. Delicious.
posted by Liesl at 7:02 AM on October 28, 2015

Could Fang Gourmet Tea be the place in the FPP?
posted by oh yeah! at 7:19 AM on October 28, 2015

This sounds delightful. I might be down modulo logistics.
posted by Skorgu at 1:44 PM on October 28, 2015

Sounds like fun! I'm up for this if it's late November (like after the 20th)
posted by revertTS at 8:29 PM on October 28, 2015

Hm. I think ~$50.00 is more than I'd thought to spend for something I mostly just like the idea of! But those are some very nice tea shops and I could be persuaded. I'll go with majority vote on this one.

oh yeah!, I think you're right, and it looks like they do tastings. It's basically down the street from Dumpling Galaxy, probably a 10 min walk or so?

larthegreat, it looks like tea drunk has tastings as well: 3 teas for 2-4 people, varying prices. I'm happy to do the sharing-of-multiple-pots thing somewhere too.

I should have done some research before posting. Sorry! Will see if I can call around and get some info tomorrow.
posted by taupe at 8:51 PM on October 28, 2015 [1 favorite]

I wouldn't surprise me if there are other good places in Flushing as well.
posted by Karmakaze at 6:22 AM on October 29, 2015

I'm in for the second half of November.
posted by Hactar at 10:24 AM on October 29, 2015

I also vote for the second half of November.
posted by gusandrews at 10:11 AM on October 30, 2015

I'd love to try Fang Tea!

That said, here are my experiences of the other proposed places:

I have been to Tea Drunk twice (though I haven't done their tasting). The staff I've interacted with are super knowledgeable and very chill and the tea is excellent, with a heavy emphasis on Chinese tea. That said, it ain't cheap.

I've been to Cha-An a bunch of times (though again, never the tea ceremony they do). They have a more varied menu in terms of country-of-origin, but their Japanese teas are somewhat better than the rest. Prices are decent.

And just to throw it out there as another option—Bosie Tea Parlor doesn't do a formal tasting, but their tea is good. The teashop was really created to be an outlet for the owner's tea brand: L'Age de Thé
posted by Grimp0teuthis at 12:58 PM on October 30, 2015

Oh good to know, Grimp0teuthis. I called tea drunk and was advised to send an email to owner about group tastings, so I did that and am waiting for response.

I called Fang and they can accommodate a group tea tasting. The only potential issue is that the space has only 2 tables, so can't accommodate more than ~12 people. Teas start at $5.00 per taste, and each one takes about 20-25 minutes.

Maybe we could start narrowing down dates/times, in the meantime. Anyone else for late November, maybe weekend of 11/20 - 11/21?
posted by taupe at 7:34 PM on October 30, 2015

Sounds doable for me.
posted by I-baLL at 11:24 AM on October 31, 2015

I read that article with great interest, so I'd be up for it. I'll be out of town around Thanksgiving but as of now the weekend of 20-21 works for me.
posted by unannihilated at 2:15 PM on October 31, 2015

This sounds extremely fun! Thanks for thinking of it! (And late November works for me, too.)
posted by Violet Blue at 8:08 PM on November 2, 2015

Should work for me, thanks for setting a date!
posted by ferret branca at 1:27 PM on November 6, 2015

Is 11:00 too early for most folks? Is it better to taste tea before a meal?

I think the timing works - probably wouldn't be a good idea to have a huge meal before tea-tasting. And people can decide on the day if time & budgets allow for a post-tea dumpling binge.
posted by oh yeah! at 7:27 PM on November 6, 2015

When do you need to know by for the reservation?
posted by Karmakaze at 3:06 PM on November 8, 2015

I told the nice people at Fang that I'd call the day before to confirm the headcount, so I guess 11/20? It didn't seem like there was any formal reservation system - I just called to let them know that a big jolly Metafilter group would be there.

A few details:

The lady I spoke with mentioned that each of the two tables would be tasting the same tea, otherwise it would get too complicated.

She also asked if we had any specific teas we wanted to try. I didn't give her any specifics because I don't know anything about tea, but if anyone has a recommendation or request, let me know and I'll pass it along (in case they have to order it or something? I don't know). Or just bring your expertise to the tasting!
posted by taupe at 1:03 PM on November 9, 2015

I will definitely come! Do you know how payment works?
posted by ferret branca at 3:11 PM on November 17, 2015

I just realized I have to be in Pennsylvania by evening. I could probably work the timing, but it would be solid travel into Flushing and then all the way back to Easton, and that's going to be driving overload. Let me know how it goes. It sounds so fun.
posted by Karmakaze at 7:01 AM on November 18, 2015

Karmakaze: for sure, and next time!

ferret branca: I think we just pay when we get there - probably simplest to bring cash.
posted by taupe at 8:36 AM on November 18, 2015

Works for me, thanks!
posted by ferret branca at 12:29 PM on November 18, 2015

Forgive me--I am sick and don't think I will be able to make it after all. Part of the sickness is that my mouth tastes gross so I also suspect a tea tasting would be wasted on me. :( I hope it goes well!
posted by ferret branca at 7:58 PM on November 20, 2015

Hey, folks - please remember to update your Yes/Maybe status soon, especially if you're going to be stuck in the trains without wi-fi on the way to Queens. (Also, I really want to do a dumpling run afterwards, so, I'm crossing my fingers for more Yes's by morning :-)
posted by oh yeah! at 8:04 PM on November 20, 2015

Oh no, hope you feel better soon, ferret branca!

I called earlier today and let them know that we had just a handful of confirmed people, but might get more than that. They said that was fine, so any last-minute Yeses are welcome :)

oh yeah! - dumpling run sounds good!
posted by taupe at 8:27 PM on November 20, 2015

I don't think I can make it to a tea tasting (my body has no idea what time it is,) but if a dumpling run is happening I'd be in.
posted by heeeraldo at 8:43 PM on November 20, 2015

I'm changing myself to a maybe because as of now there is no way I can get all the way out to that part of Queens anywhere near 11. I'm still going to try and trek out, but I'm not sure if you'll still be there by the time I make it. If you disband before I arrive, no worries. Have fun!
posted by unannihilated at 6:04 AM on November 21, 2015

Taupe, heeeraldo, check your me-mail for my phone number. And Dumpling Galaxy is at 42-35 Main Street, Flushing.
posted by oh yeah! at 6:24 AM on November 21, 2015

My ETA is noon. I have oh yeah!'s number so I'll just text her to see if you guys are still at tea or have already moved on to dumplings. (So you don't have to keep updating the thread if you don't want to.)
posted by unannihilated at 8:03 AM on November 21, 2015

unannihilated, will prob still be tea-ing at noon - memailed you.
posted by taupe at 8:15 AM on November 21, 2015

Thread update: Tea tasting is still happening so still time to come out for dumplings afterward!
posted by unannihilated at 9:05 AM on November 21, 2015

Walking to Dumpling Galaxy now.
posted by oh yeah! at 9:58 AM on November 21, 2015

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