Tea in Sydney

Tea lovers often ask me where to go for tea in my home town, Sydney, so here is Teashirts’ (by no means definitive) guide to Sydney venues that serve quality leaf. Please note this page cover venues for sitting down to enjoy tea, not tea retailers.

Tea venues

Please note this section covers venues that are primarily designed for sitting down to enjoy tea, not tea retailers.

La Floraison SydneyLa Floraison
Lower Ground Regent Place, 501 George Street, Sydney

The loose-leaf tea comes in large glass teapots on a candle stand, perfect for whiling away an afternoon sipping tea. The concept of the teahouse is floral, as the name suggests, so the tea is blended with flowers and presented beautifully. Plenty of tisanes on the menu, too, if decaf is your preference, plus pair it with a range of dessert options.

Long's Tea Hurstville SydneyLong’s Tea
Shop 1, 9 Dora Street, Hurstville
Proprietors: Eric Chen, Chloe Wu

The long-time Chinese tea wholesaler has opened a tearoom to showcase their tea to the public. Sit and brew at your own gongfu cha table and pay by the tea. The house specialty is bamboo stored pu’er. You won’t regret splashing out for the decades-old sheng pu’er.

MY Teahouse Neutral Bay SydneyMY Tea House
Shop 4-5, 129-133 Military Road, Neutral Bay
Proprietor: Raymond Mao

Expect to be invited to the tea table whether you’re there to buy or browse. Book ahead for special tea journeys, from beginners tastings to pu’er events. There’s a big range of Chinese teaware on offer, with the specialty tea of choice being pu’er.

Taka Tea Double Bay SydneyTaka Tea Garden
320 New South Head Road, Double Bay
Proprietors: Helen Kwok, Taka Pan

Japanese tea specialists Taka Pan and Helen Kwok also offer premium Chinese and Taiwanese teas. I’ve only been here a couple of times because it’s not often open when I’m in the neighbourhood; ring ahead to confirm.

Tea Journal Chatswood SydneyTea Journal
Shop 44, 436 Victoria Road, Chatswood
Proprietor: Sunny Huang

Tea Journal boasts a well-curated menu of Chinese tea, some from the proprietor’s family plantation, as well as some inspired Asian tea blends (lavender pu’er anyone?). While just steps away from Chatswood transport interchange, the venue is peaceful and well-suited to taking time for tea. (P.S: New city store opening in 2018.)

TenRen's Chatswood Sydney Ginger XuTenren’s Tea
389 Victoria Road, Chatswood

One of Taiwan’s biggest tea brands has re-opened on Chatswood’s high street. The most eyecatching menu is the bubble tea and desserts offering but there’s decent quality Chinese and Taiwanese loose leaf here too, plus a smattering of Japanese brews.

Rabbit Hole Tea Chippendale SydneyThe Rabbit Hole Organic Tea Bar
146 Abercrombie Street, Redfern
Shop 1, 23 Barangaroo Avenue, Barangaroo
Proprietors: Corinne Smith, Amara Jarratt

Brought to you by two-thirds of the team that run the Sydney Tea Festival, and without a coffee machine in sight, The Rabbit Hole is a tea-lovers haven. The duo have been serving their delicious organic blends for years through cafes and now open their own doors to welcome tea connoisseurs with their full range in a funky fitout.

The Tea Cosy The Rocks SydneyThe Tea Cosy
33 George Street, The Rocks
Proprietor: Ash Kinchin

Set in a haunted (allegedly) heritage house, The Tea Cosy has plenty of character—whether that comes from the sandstone venue or the rainbow of tea cosies adorning the place is for you to decide. It has, hands down, the best scones in Sydney. Trust me, I’ve eaten a lot of scones in Sydney. Perfect for morning tea, afternoon tea, Devonshire tea, high tea…

Topo Tea Chinatown SydneyTopo Tea
D6 Sussex Centre, 401 Sussex Street, Sydney
Proprietor: Shane Shu

Take a seat for a formal tea tasting or relax with an all-you-can-drink-for-$15 session. Topo has a mix of their own plantation teas alongside popular Chinese and Taiwanese teas as well as a couple of rarer teas and an outstanding range of gong fu cha teaware.

TTotaler tea Newtown SydneyT Totaler
Ground floor The Galeries, 500 George St, Sydney
555a King Street, Newtown
Proprietors: Amber and Paul Sunderland

There are very few tea blenders that match the flair of T totaler. The duo are fun and experimental, using mainly organic ingredients, and will also teach you how they do it in their blending workshops. Its speciality is herbal tea but you’ll also find camellia sinensis and some awesome cake here.

Zensation teahouse Redfern SydneyZensation
656 Bourke Street, East Redfern
Proprietors: Raymond and Christina Leung

A well-appointed teahouse with a modern oriental theme, Zensation excels at hosting tea events, particularly at Chinese New Year. Pair your tea with food by choosing a degustation, or select your own brew from the curated menu. Leaf and teaware also available for sale.

Notable others

Venues where tea is not the main focus but they’ve put some effort into offering decent loose leaf tea.

Angel Garden by Uncle Tetsu
Lower Ground Regent Place, 501 George Street, Sydney

The cafe cousin of the famous Uncle Tetsu Japanese cheesecake shop, Angel Garden is a dessert cafe serving Uncle Tetsu’s popular cakes and tarts alongside a strong Yame-matcha cappuccino and pots of various tea.

Bread & Circus
21 Fountain Street, Alexandria

Fresh, wholesome and—above all—delicious food is the main game here, but it also has a wonderful selection of fine Asian teas. I have no idea who the supplier is but I rate this venue highly!

Cafe Cre Asion
101/21 Alberta Street, Sydney

The main game is coffee and macarons but there’s a decent list of Japanese teas and western style teas and blends by French institution Mariage Frères. Matcha lattes come in a bowl.

Cafe Oratnek
4 Pitt Street, Redfern

Choose from a pot of loose-leaf Mariage Freres tea, a matcha latte or hojicha thickshake to go with your matcha French toast—this is Japanese fusion for brunch at its best.

Doris & Beryl’s Bridge Club and Tea House
530 King Street, Newtown

While cocktails are the main game here, there’s a nice offering of loose-leaf tea in actual teapots. Paired with a game of cards, this venue was my favourite place before it existed.

Fleetwood Macchiato
43 Erskineville Road, Erskineville

This little cafe deserves two thumbs up for tea service with a good, seasonal range of Tea Craft teas brought prepared to the table. Oolong and pu’er re-steeps offered without asking.

Juan Bowl & Tea
94a Pitt Street, Redfern

As you tuck into your beautifully presented don (rice bowl) you can sip a matched tea by Redfern teahouse stalwarts Zensation.

Oh! Matcha by Chanoma
Shop 11 Regent Place, 501 George Street, Sydney

Okay, hear me out. What if we had a place where you could get Japanese-style hotdogs and matcha drinks and desserts? Here ’tis!

ONE Tea Lounge & Grill
73 York Street, Sydney (also takeaway at Westfield Chatswood)
Proprietor: David Yip

Highly recommend the delicious tea cocktails, though you can also get a hot pot of Japanese tea here too. Most of the menu includes tea as an ingredient and I suggest you leave room for dessert.

The Palace Tea Room
Level 1 Queen Victoria Building, George Street, Sydney

An enchanting room that serves beautifully presented food with a serious offering of tea by Harney & Sons in fine china pots. Lunch and high tea both recommended (but not at the same time).

The Tea Salon
Level 4 Westfield, Pitt Street, Sydney

An oasis of calm in bustling Westfield, The Tea Salon offers a wide range of blended and flavoured teas accompanied by beautifully decorated cakes and other sweets. Oh there are savoury items too, but let’s face it, you’re here for a high tea treat.

White Rabbit Gallery
30 Balfour Street, Chippendale

A permanent home for contemporary Chinese art, the White Rabbit Gallery also houses a small eatery on its ground floor that serves a range of Chinese tea alongside dumplings and scones.

WATCH THIS SPACE:  Cafe Bruce, Glebe

Have I missed naming your favourite venue? Maybe I haven’t been yet! Nominate it here.

All photos by Adeline Teoh, except TenRen’s by Ginger Xu via Zomato.

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