Friday, April 18, 2014Cloudy 10°C
Best of Toronto

The Best Tea in Toronto

Posted by Robyn Urback / November 2, 2012

best tea torontoThe best tea in Toronto often comes from purveyors who offer more than just loose leaves. The men and women behind some of these shops can tell you the optimal temperature for a jasmine green and the merits of a gojiberry herbal blend, all while brewing the perfect tea for a morning pick-me-up or afternoon unwind. The best tea in Toronto is usually offered alongside a good assortment of teaware and accessories, and a select few shops go above and beyond by serving their particular takes on afternoon high tea.

Though David's Tea is one of the more recognizable chains brands throughout Toronto and beyond, we've stuck to independent shops for this list of the best tea in the city.

See also:

The best afternoon tea in Toronto
The best brunch in Toronto
The best new cafes in Toronto 2011

House of Tea

House of Tea

I’m not sure if it’s House of Tea itself that people love, or the friendly service and expertise (expert-teas?) of co-owner and tea consultant Marisha Golla. Whatever the reason, House of Tea has consistently been one of the best places to shop for tea in Toronto, boasting hundreds of different varieties for more than 15 years. You’ll leave with armfuls and lots of information. More »

Tealish

Tealish

Tealish wins big props for its Toasty Almond alone. That said, you’d do yourself a disservice by sticking to just one tea, what with Caramel Apple Roobois, Coconut Cream Chai, and Walnut Ave. lining its shelves. Tealish is perfectly situated for a warm cup and Trinity Bellwoods-watching in the winter, and also keeps a few varieties on ice during the summertime for a quick tea grab-and-go. More »

Tao Tea Leaf

Tao Tea Leaf

Tao Tea Leaf offers an experience as much as a superb selection of teas from around the world. The Yorkville shop hosts weekly workshops detailing everything from the history of certain teas, to proper storage and preparation, to different qualities and characteristics, and of course, tastings. Owner Tao Wu also stages interactive Chinese Gongfu tea ceremonies for interested guests. And for everyone else, there are plenty of pots and accessories to peruse. More »

T-Buds

T-Buds

T-Buds has that “café” feel but with oolong in lieu of espresso. A big hit is its daily afternoon tea on the upstairs lounge, which comes complete with scones, petit fours, and itty-bitty sandwiches. There are plenty of loose leaf teas and boxed sets to take home, though the T-Buds appeal is definitely its ambiance. And can I stress again the itty-bitty sandwiches? More »

Majesteas

Majesteas

A winner in my books for best “punny” name, though a better reason to visit this Leslieville shop is for its blissful vibe. Owners Ian Macdonald and Robert Gignac are tea connoisseurs to say the least (just check out that invite from the Queen on the wall, if you don’t believe me), and together they’ve created a little tea-drinker’s paradise complete with rich wood accents, comfortable seating, and hundreds of different teas. Regulars are encouraged to join the “Loyaltea” program. More »

The Red Tea Box

The Red Tea Box

The Red Tea Box does afternoon tea with a twist, creating tea bento boxes of matcha cheesecake, salmon burgers, quinoa and more. All of which is served with a pot of tea, of course. The front of the shop is for little fondant cakes and loose leaf teas, the latter of which is available in small jars allowing customers to smell before they buy. And for your tea-loving friends, unique teaware for gifts, too. More »

Tsaa Tea Shop

Tsaa Tea Shop

A haven of tea and that which is gluten-free. I’m partial to Tsaa’s Organic Second Spring blend, though many stop by purely for the gluten-free carrot cake. While seating is limited at Tsaa, the shop is a cozy spot to sit and enjoy one of Tsaa’s latest custom blends and peer out over the Danforth traffic. Definitely try the London fog if you consider yourself an Earl Grey Fan. More »

Pippins Tea Company

Pippins Tea Company

Over in the Beaches, Pippins Tea Company is practically equal parts tea and teawares. This is the tea shop for you if you want endless choices of mugs, pots, strainers, steepers, saucers and everything else tea-related. Plus 150 different types of teas and counting. And just to add even more choice, Pippins stocks a small selection of teatime snacks including Campbells Shortbread and Greaves Jam. More »

Discussion

41 Comments

Blurg / November 2, 2012 at 03:26 pm
user-pic
YOU MISSED TEAOPIA, GAWD YOU PEOPLE ARE STOOPID.
Uhh / November 2, 2012 at 03:53 pm
user-pic
No David's Tea?
l'ilguy / November 2, 2012 at 03:55 pm
user-pic
T-BAG.

Otherwise known as the Thunder Bay Art Gallery.
Monica / November 2, 2012 at 04:57 pm
user-pic
I love David's tea but I'm going to have to try all these other places! great post!!

thefoodsisterhood.blogspot.ca
Willow replying to a comment from Uhh / November 2, 2012 at 05:05 pm
user-pic
David's is not hipster enough for the blogto readership. Duh!
DS / November 2, 2012 at 05:07 pm
user-pic
David's tea owners voted conservative in the 1990s, hence they will not be featured on BlogTO.. ever!
PG / November 2, 2012 at 05:49 pm
user-pic
We stopped in Majesteas today, and my daughter had a really lovely chocolate tea. She liked it as much as a hot chocolate. It's such a nice place to stop on a chilly day for a warm-up. There are some really beautiful tea pots and cups, new in stock, that are going on my Christmas wish list too.
Toronto Tea Festival / November 2, 2012 at 06:02 pm
user-pic
So excited about the "Best Tea in Toronto", Toronto Tea Festival is coming soon, please Sign up for our newsletter to get festival updates @http://teafestivaltoronto.com/
Adamski / November 2, 2012 at 11:31 pm
user-pic
In fairness people, we all know about David's Tea.. If Blog TO did a list of places to get coffee and had Starbucks, second cup, lettieri etc on that list.. It would be a pretty useless service!
Me replying to a comment from Adamski / November 3, 2012 at 09:20 am
user-pic
But if they did, even if they had Tim Horton's on it, because they said so all the Hipsters would run to those places also. lol.
Binky / November 3, 2012 at 12:07 pm
user-pic
The list is soon hopefully to be joined by Samadhi Tea House about to open at 160 Baldwin St, in Kensington Market.
always happens... replying to a comment from Willow / November 3, 2012 at 05:34 pm
user-pic
Do you not realize 99% percent of the comment on this blog are by old conservatives? Where do these complaints about 'hipsters' come from???
Toby replying to a comment from Binky / November 4, 2012 at 12:26 am
user-pic
Let's let Samadhi Tea House open, and put a few good years of service to the community in first, and run a successful business before we go adding it to any lists
Melody / November 4, 2012 at 08:37 am
user-pic
I love dropping in to Majesteas to se what's new. They have unique blends and even a tea for hangovers. :)
Binky replying to a comment from Toby / November 4, 2012 at 09:00 am
user-pic
@Toby, I believe BlogTO updates their BEST OF... lists infrequently. Perhaps there exists a reasonable amount of time for a new business to qualify for a review, and if warranted, inclusion in the next list.

ohh replying to a comment from Uhh / November 5, 2012 at 01:37 pm
user-pic
"Though David's Tea is one of the more recognizable chains brands throughout Toronto and beyond, we've stuck to independent shops for this list of the best tea in the city."

It's mentioned in the article.
ccz / November 5, 2012 at 02:06 pm
user-pic
http://www.balzacs.com/locations/distillery-district/

all your other shops are invalid
Rob / November 5, 2012 at 02:07 pm
user-pic
Went to the David's Tea around the corner from me. Just a totally weird experience... it felt pretentious, tons of overpriced 1%-er tea-lover crap for sale, felt like I was going to get arrested for touching anything, like I was test driving a car and simply ordering "umm, whatever tea you recommend" would be a challenge.

Never been back, but the yuppies like complicating things that are supposed to be humble and simple, so it's no surprise it's booming.
iliketea / November 5, 2012 at 03:50 pm
user-pic
say tea is better.
http://www.sayteaonbloor.com/
Well... replying to a comment from ohh / November 6, 2012 at 01:14 pm
user-pic
...that totally wasn't in the post when I originally commented on it.

Also David's wasn't even in the same post written four years ago, so... http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:6MCLj6-bgi8J:www.blogto.com/toronto/the_best_tea_in_toronto/+&;cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=ca

I'm just saying that popularity or ubiquity shouldn't preclude one from qualifying for best anything. Starbucks - in my mind anyway - wouldn't be included from,say, a 'Best Coffee' list not because everyone has heard of it, but rather because I can list ten places off the top of my head that serve a better cup of coffee. I've been to most of the nine locations listed here, and I couldn't name two places better than David's (let alone nine!), perceived pretensions notwithstanding.
Anar replying to a comment from Well... / November 19, 2012 at 01:04 am
user-pic
I find it hard to believe that you went to "most of the nine locations listed" and found David's to be better. Really? As an avid tea drinker I have found quality flavoured tea at Tealish and knowledgeable staff at Majesteas and Tao. I always found that staff at Davids and Teaopia know more about selling than they do about tea. I can get my tea without the tude from these smaller places.
Rajan replying to a comment from Rob / November 22, 2012 at 02:12 pm
user-pic
I would rather support local small businesses, not owned by American companies (Starbucks, Teavanna)or someone with a rich -Le Chateau owner- Uncle(Davids)who are all about profits. I support small shops who also support their local schools, charities and actually know lots about tea and aren't interested in spouting BS just to make a sale. I've found the smaller shops to have higher quality tea that doesn't need candy added to it to make it drinkable. Good for BlogTO supporting the little guys out there. Now to find time to get to all these places and try them.
Me replying to a comment from Anar / November 22, 2012 at 02:35 pm
user-pic
Same reason I don't get coffee at Tim Hortons, I like to support Canadian companies. Of course most people prefer convenience over supporting local business.
amy / November 24, 2012 at 05:47 pm
user-pic
David's Tea is actually one of my favourite tea spots in the city and would be pretty high on my list, and I'm a big tea drinker as well (aka British). I don't know what location you all seem to be getting attitude at but I never have a problem. Sorry it doesn't have enough ~indie cred~ to impress you lot.
Shawntal / December 11, 2012 at 06:46 pm
user-pic
Tsaa is simply amazing!!
Toronto Tea Festival / January 7, 2013 at 11:18 am
user-pic
The Toronto Tea Festival is coming soon, please check the website:http://teafestivaltoronto.com and Follow up at Facebook
teaseed replying to a comment from Rob / January 20, 2013 at 11:30 pm
user-pic
there is really good local Teahouse in Kensington Market .. House of Energy and they have all organic teas, wild mushroom teas and elixirs. Its a cool little spot, out of the ordinary.. You should check it out..
user-pic
I have a keen synthetic attention designed for details and can foresee complications just before these people occur.
April / July 29, 2013 at 05:03 pm
user-pic
Neat Web site, Continue the great work. Thanks.
Angel reiki courses / September 22, 2013 at 09:48 pm
user-pic
Reiki With Prayer and Visualization

by Laura Ellen Gifford

I would like to offer an additional perspective on the story my son,
Matthew, shared in his article above.

When Matthew came home from school the day he heard of the accident, he was deeply depressed.
This was of great concern to me because he is always happy,
and depression is just not a state of being I have ever been able to associate with him
Louis Vuitton Monogram Denim Handbags / October 18, 2013 at 04:18 pm
user-pic
Hello are using Wordpress for your site platform? I'm new to the
blog world but I'm trying to get started and set up my own.
Do you require any coding knowledge to make your own blog?
Any help would be really appreciated!
live healthy / October 27, 2013 at 12:03 am
user-pic
Hi there to every one, the contents existing at this web page are actually awesome for people knowledge, well, keep up
the good work fellows.
ps3 black friday sale / November 5, 2013 at 04:26 pm
user-pic
Thank you, I've just been searching for info about this subject for
ages and yours is the greatest I've discovered till now.
But, what about the conclusion? Are you sure concerning the source?
Martin / December 8, 2013 at 06:04 pm
user-pic
Ha-ha-ha. I laugh every time I go by any of the pretentious tea shops in Toronto. David's and other similar stores are way too overpriced. It's TEA you are going to drink, not some elixir that promises to help you live forever. GET HOLD OF YOURSELVES PEOPLE, DON'T BE SO GULIBLE.
I have been drinking tea my whole life (I am considered to be a senior citizen now)and have always been able to purchase good quality tea at a fraction of the price any of these new
stores charge.
Just today I bought about 100 grams of loose leaf Oolong tea. It cost me about three dollars and when I made it, it was delicious. For fun, I also went to David's Tea, which happened to be nearby and asked about the price of their Oolong tea. The price was close to twenty dollars per 100 grams. I just laughed and left the store laughing.
Enough said.
MGood / January 11, 2014 at 03:50 pm
user-pic
Glad to see Majesteas here. My family chose a beautiful red "acorn" tea pot for me for Christmas, and the other day I found the Scottish Caramel Toffee Pu-erh tea there to put in it. Ian was right - it's a tea for coffee drinkers. The store's a lovely spot in an increasingly busy neighbourhood, and their tea is now a happy part of my busy day.
Chris / January 12, 2014 at 04:14 pm
user-pic
Cabin Fever on Bloor just East of Keele/Parkside is EXCELLENT as well.
Gold Tea / January 12, 2014 at 05:32 pm
user-pic
I'd Prefer "Golden Mint" located around Rosedale station. Over any of these, The prices are affordable and great in quality! Also, It has a grand variety. Try it out! it's a really cozy place.
Albert replying to a comment from Martin / January 13, 2014 at 12:46 am
user-pic
Wow really, 3$? Where did you buy your tea? I am looking for places to buy tea.
the walking dead season 1 episode 1 / February 14, 2014 at 09:36 pm
user-pic
I'll immediately snatch your rss as I can't find your email subscription hyperlink or newsletter service.
Do you've any? Kindly let me realize so that I
could subscribe. Thanks.
Steve / February 15, 2014 at 12:16 pm
user-pic
David's? Give me a break. Learn about real tea and then opine away. But first learn.
Frank / February 25, 2014 at 09:14 pm
user-pic
I am surprised no one has mentioned the Tea Emporium. Fell off the radar?

Add a Comment

Other Cities: Montreal