MAN CHA TEAS

Purveyor of Premium Chinese Tea and education provider to children in need.


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Mighty bag not so mighty mint tea

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I revisited a favourite place of mine for lunch and re-ordered a Mighty Leaf mint tea. The lunch was great but sadly the tea was so-so.

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Before I move on I need to comment on the name of this tea, “organic mint melange.” So melange means mixture in French but from what I gather this company is American and based in the US. It drives me potty to see tea companies try to add prestige or elegance by simply adding French. Don’t get me wrong I love the French and I often visit France, infact a very close friend is French, but why do companies do this. The French can be elegant and certain brands have prestige, however these are earned through years and years of handcrafting finely made goods.

If Mighty Leaf want to be posh and French why not  go the full hog? Thanks to google, because mon francais est tres mauvais, “mélange menthe organique” should be the direct French translation. Since I’m ranting, TWG attaches a French air to themselves too, but falsely they are a Singaporean company! My opinion is that brands should be true to themselves and try not to be something they are not.

Disappointingly, I think generally Asian consumers are not aware of this and go for what is printed on the surface. Maybe western consumers are more savvy or maybe note? Whatever the case, more brands are using marketing falsely and fooling people, which is not on!

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Oops that was a long rant. So back to the positives. I like the tea bag of mighty Leaf. It won a best product for packaging award in 2006 for its design and its also combustible too.

http://www.mightyleaf.com/the-magic-of-our-tea-pouch

Other than that the mint tea was nothing to shout home about. So you might as well save some money go to the supermarket and get a simple Twinning’s mint tea instead, for it is exactly what its says on the packet – a peppermint tea.

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Toast Box, Tai Koo Shing

toast box

Mrs Man and I thought that we would try out this branch of Toast Box. I don’t think it is new but we are still so unfamiliar with this area. Besides Hong Kong is always changing so fast, its common that a whole building may have been demolished since your last visit to an area!

Anyway we were hungry and our visit to other branches have always been enjoyable.

toast box pour

Walking in felt alright, place fitted like other branches. Lots of steam from the boiling water and the signature butter mountain (sorry no picture), however it did feel a little sparse. There were customers but staff wise there seemed to be only three few buzzing around. This may have explained why although the restaurant was not full the queue was strangely long.

Anyhow I wanted my milk tea and a snack. As it’s customary when it’s 3pm, I was famished!

toast box set

So we ordered a Beef Rendang set with a milk tea and a Kaya Toast. Beef Rendang is an Indonesian curry dish  with caramelised beef. Kaya is a type of spread made of egg, sugar, coconut milk and flavoured with pandan, which is a common plant used in South Asian cooking.

Foodwise the Beef Rendang was acceptable, the beef was fairly tender and the rice was coco-nutty. However, the signature Kaya toast was so-so. There wasn’t much Kaya compared to a serious wedge of butter. It looked like a badly assembled cheddar cheese sandwich! I get somewhat calorie conscious when I see a copious wedge of unnecessary butter strangled between slices of toasted white bread. So I used a knife to chip away some of the wedge.

toast box cup

Now to the milk tea. The cashier was also the tea maker today. I was impressed that she warmed and rinsed my cup with hot water. I believe that this is essential to keep the tea warm once poured and I like to see it done for hygiene reasons. In Hong Kong at Yum Cha restaurants it is customary to wash your cutlery and bowls before you eat, as the kitchen washers often do not rinse the detergent off thoroughly. Then she poured the tea from a great height. I love seeing this as I’m sure it takes some practice. If I ever tried something like this I would more than likely slash hot tea across chest and face then be admitted to A&E!! Please as they say “don’t try this at home!”

Maybe I was impressed by the lady’s precision so I clumsily spilt a few precious gulps on the way to our table, which explains this wet looking cup. From first inspection of the tea, it looked a bit too milky. I did ask for less sugar as they usually add sugar for you at Toast Box. The smell was creamy but didn’t have a strong tea scent. My initial observations were correct. The tea was creamy and not so sweet which I liked but had no depth of tea flavour. Last time in Cafe Matchbox the tea had too much strength and was steeped too long, this time it was almost the opposite. It goes to show that its worth going the distance for your perfect cup of milk tea.

To sum up, this branch of Toast Box is not especially outstanding but if you are in the area and fancy a quick milk tea its worth a visit but be warned of the Kaya  Butter wedge toast.

Mr. Man

P.S as suggested by previous comments, I should give contact details of places I visit. So here goes…but I won’t be divulging addresses if the place is bad. Don’t want you to suffer like I did.

Toast Box
Shop 514, G/F, Hing On Mansion, 5 Tai Yue Avenue, Taikoo Shing. Telephone, (852) 2115 9985.