Royal-T Cafe in Culver City
Royal/T's website says it is "...a playful collision of spaces - art space/cafe/shop..."
This defines Royal/T perfectly...but it is even more!
Royal-T Cafe offers some fine teas (their most popular seems to be a rose-soy milk tea) in some very beautiful Bodum wares. You can also enjoy items from their menu: salads, sandwiches and high-tea delicacies. It is a whimsical kind of place, but very inviting and relaxing for an afternoon delight.
Besides the cafe, there is a large art space and a shop where you can browse their various offerings of domestic goods, toys, clothing and jewelry, and art items.
Save time after your pot of tea to wander the many spaces of Royal/T!
8910 Washington Boulevard
I had the Wagyu burger they offered on their DineLA menu and it was mediocre at best. Completely overcooked and pretty bland. It could have been generic beef as far as I was concerned. None of the food was that good at all. I really wanted to like the food, but I didn't at all. The atmosphere and shop were fantastic. The tartare wasn't bad, but nothing to write home about. The quiches tasted like it was frozen from a box. They were out of the lemon bars, so we tried some DRY banana bread and some incredibly alcoholic Tiramisu (thanks for the extra, but that's all I tasted).
Just not too interesting.. I may go back for breakfast as the menu looked good, but really would not recommend ANYTHING for lunch
Initially, I ordered a lemon bar with my tea, but I was told they were out. Then, we opted for the high tea selection of goodies and there were some cut up lemon bars on the tray. I was baffled, but I also had the chance to taste their lemon bars. They were decent but not memorable. The banana bread had chocolate pieces in it and was very moist, quite unlike your experience.
Don't go for the food; rather, go for the whimsy of it all. The tea is worth the visit, as is the space. The food is okay and sometimes good. It is a pleasant afternoon stop.
I tried the Wagyu beef burger and have to agree with sarcasmsk. It was overdone, mediocre, and had a generic taste. The patty was thick, but it didn't taste the way I thought wagyu should have. It wasn't that the burger was bad. It just wasn't wagyu beef. One positive thing was that it was pretty damn big.
I also had the quiche (ordered off the DineLA lunch menu) and it was terrible. It had a really bitter taste to it.
I returned a few nights later for the DineLA dinner menu and had a slightly better experience. The smoked salmon canopes were decent. My sake-steamed fish was okay. Maybe a bit overdone and had too many bones in it, but it wasn't bad.
I am becoming convinced that the food is incidental to the tea experience here.
Royal-T is a fun space to have a very good pot of tea. If you are hungry, they do have some food...if you must!
But go for the tea.
The Bodum cups are very pretty, as are the Bodum teapots.
The tea is really good...enjoy the tea!
Royal/T is indeed a pretty fun space (and is an indirect reason for my inheriting a tokidoki bag later on, but I digress) -- their teas are pretty good (I particularly like their Yuzu Sencha, Kyoto Sunset and Royal Matcha lattes) but I wasn't wowed by their food. I heard good things from people who went during DineLA restaurant weeks so I might give it another try...
my Royal/T blogpost: http://la-oc-foodie.blogspot.com/2008...
We selected the high tea option.
I agree with you, AquaW, in that I was more into their tea than their food. The savory items (smoked salmon on a soft cracker, asparagus wrapped in beef, spicy tuna and a few others) were adequate in satifying our appetites; the sweets (lemon bar and banana bread) were good with the tea. There was a mini quiche that I found to be rather bland, but the scattered raspberries and blueberries were very good.
Next time, I will pass on the high tea option; I will order a pot of tea and share something sweet. It is the tea that I am remembering...and I can't wait to return to another pot. AquaW, you have mentioned two of the ones that I will try: the Yuzu Sencha and the Royal Matcha Latte.