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Best place for loose leaf tea?

sobriquet Jul 4, 2009 05:37 PM

I'm a huge fan of the coffee from Intelligentsia, but I've been having problems with them being out of the tea I like when I go.

Where else can I go to get good loose leaf tea? I'm skeptical of chain places (their coffee stinks, why would the tea be better?), but I'll keep an open mind. I'm up in Hollywood.

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  1. b
    bad nono RE: sobriquet Jul 4, 2009 06:15 PM

    I like to buy loose leaf tea at the Farmer's Market on 3rd & Fairfax.

    1. Servorg RE: sobriquet Jul 4, 2009 06:36 PM

      You might like Chado.


      5 Replies
      1. re: Servorg
        sobriquet RE: Servorg Jul 5, 2009 10:38 AM

        Close and looks very interesting. Thanks very much. I assume they sell the loose teas in their store and not just the website?

        1. re: sobriquet
          Servorg RE: sobriquet Jul 5, 2009 10:47 AM

          I haven't bought loose tea from them but I have to assume that they do sell it from the their store (can't see why they wouldn't?).

          1. re: Servorg
            sobriquet RE: Servorg Jul 5, 2009 12:26 PM

            The pictures make it look more like a restaurant than a store, but reviews seem to indicate they sell them there, too. I plan on giving them a try. Thanks again, Servorg.

            1. re: sobriquet
              burumun RE: sobriquet Jul 7, 2009 12:32 AM

              If Chado is close to you, then how about Bird Pick?
              They seem to have a great selection when I went and my friend loves it even though he also said it's a bit pricey.

          2. re: sobriquet
            sablouwho RE: sobriquet Jul 9, 2009 11:24 AM

            Yes, they definitely sell tea in the store--they have a huge selection.

        2. j
          jaykayen RE: sobriquet Jul 4, 2009 07:00 PM

          Funnel Mill in Santa Monica. Great selection.


          1. Joe Blowe RE: sobriquet Jul 4, 2009 07:21 PM

            Wing Hop works for me...

            Wing Hop Fung
            727 N Broadway 102, Los Angeles, CA 90012

            Wing Hop Fung Ginseng
            725 W Garvey Ave, Monterey Park, CA

            1. k
              KTLA RE: sobriquet Jul 6, 2009 06:34 AM

              Le Palais des Thes
              401 North Canon Drive
              Beverly Hills, CA 90210
              Store hours: 10 AM-6 PM Monday through Saturday ; 12 PM-5 PM on Sunday
              Phone 310-271-7922

              1. l
                lakeshow318 RE: sobriquet Jul 9, 2009 01:15 PM

                Ten Ren Tea
                -they have many affordable and less affordable teas mainly from China and Taiwan but some of are from India

                27 N. Broadway
                Los Angeles, CA 90012
                (213) 626-8844

                154 W Valley Blvd
                San Gabriel, CA 91776

                (626) 288-1663

                1. y
                  Yes Please RE: sobriquet Jul 9, 2009 01:43 PM

                  I love TeaForte tea. I had it at a restaurant once, I can't remember where but I know if you go on their website you can check locations. And I think they have it at Mr. Marcel's which I don't think is too far from you.

                  Mr Marcel's Gourmet Market duplicate
                  6333 W 3rd St # 150, Los Angeles, CA

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Yes Please
                    ozbuc RE: Yes Please Jul 9, 2009 09:59 PM

                    If you don't mind buying online, Tattlers teas is a good source.


                  2. m
                    MrShoop RE: sobriquet Jul 9, 2009 11:32 PM

                    If you happen to be in the south bay, try Tea Habitat which is in the mall at the top of the hill in PV. Nice mom & pop Chinese tea place. http://www.teahabitat.com/

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: MrShoop
                      theonceler RE: MrShoop Jul 10, 2009 12:35 AM

                      They are a good source for very high-end mainland Chinese oolongs.

                    2. b
                      beezees RE: sobriquet Jul 9, 2009 11:57 PM

                      I love Intelligentsia's Osmanthus Silver Needle. Ten Ren has a wide selection. I like their King's Tea, which I purchase at the San Gabriel location. Lupicia can be hit or miss (I like the Jasmin Dragon Pearl), but their packaging is very pretty (if you're looking to make a gift)... One of my favorites is Theodor's Peché Mignon, which you can purchase at Jin Pattisserie in Venice, or at their new location in Century City. Happy sipping!

                      1. t
                        theonceler RE: sobriquet Jul 10, 2009 09:03 AM

                        Ten-Ren: They have some very strongly scented jasmine if you like that (great for guests!), and good taiwanese oolong. But If I'm paying their premium prices I'd rather order online where you can get exact harvest locations/date etc instead of a pretty box.

                        Tea Habitat is the only local place I've found where they actually know the details and will tell you when and where the tea is from (if you believe any tea merchant on this...), but very specialized to mainland chinese.

                        Wing Hop Fung is great with a few caveats... you sort of have to know what you're doing. There is a lot of junk there... everything that is pre-packaged has been horrible in my experience (including the icky pu-erh cakes they have been carrying in the past few years). You MUST order from the bins.You can't ask them for advice because of course they will just push you towards whatever is the most expensive thing... which will be no different than what is next to it at half the price. Also you need to know that when you say 2 ounces on a $200/lb tea they will always fill .2lb and feign innocence if you call them it. So you should just think .2lb in advance to avoid anger/frustration issues. But they do have some good stuff in the bins and I think the ginseng-coated oolong at $20-30/lb cant be beat... (also good for cheap pots).

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