Relax, it’s teatime in Calgary

Tea is giving coffee a run for its money at Calgary teahouses, cafes and boutiques. Whether you prefer it green, black or rooibos red, iced, infused or topped with a foamy matcha head, you’ll find the sit-down cup or take-home bag to suit your loose-leaf preference at these tea spots.

The Rimrock

1
133 9 Avenue SW, Calgary, AB T2P 2M3

Teatime is always an elegant affair at The Fairmont Palliser in downtown Calgary. Afternoon tea is served daily from 1 pm to 3 pm and starts with your choice of loose or bagged varieties, but the historic luxury hotel’s house mix — Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling — is recommended. Hot beverages are served with berries and cream, plus a feel-good assortment of wee finger sandwiches, pastries and warm vanilla scones.

The Naked Leaf

2
4-1126 Kensington Rd NW, Calgary, AB T2N 3P3

As its name suggests, The Naked Leaf in Kensington carries many top loose-tea varieties. Purchase your black, white, herbal and oolong in attractive tins that have been custom decorated by various city artists. These airtight containers can also be adorned with your own custom imagery. Return with your tin for a refill and save a dollar. You’re also welcome to order a hot cuppa and sit down at the shop’s handful of indoor and sidewalk tables.

iTea

3
120-1177 11 Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2R 1K9

Like its big, green awning reads, it’s a place for tea, but this Beltline café is also the place for some seriously good Chinese soup bowls. Sign up for a full-on tea ceremony featuring Chinese varieties of black and oolong. Closed Sundays.

Teavana

4
160-6455 Macleod Trail SW, Calgary, AB T2H 0K8

Featuring several locations including one in Chinook Centre, Teavana carries a selection of 110 bag-and-go loose tea varieties. The shop’s tea product array includes kettles, teapots, cups and more, and it also features an in-store tea bar. Serving lunch and snacks, the drink menu is flashy, featuring tea-based drinks such as tea smoothies and lattes and sparkling iced teas.

Tea Trader

5
1228 9 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0T1

A gem of an Inglewood shop that has the feel of a cozy apothecary, Tea Trader has atmosphere and selection in abundance. Look for loose black, green and oolong teas from China, India, Taiwan, Sri Lanka and Japan as well as South African rooibos and South American loose-leaf mate with calabash gourd cups and filtered straws. Fifteen house blends include English, Irish and Welsh breakfast teas. Sorry, no café service.

TotaliTea the Tea Boutique

6
510 77 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2H 1C3

Located in the Calgary Farmers’ Market, this loose-leaf tea specialty shop carries black, white, oolong, pu’erh, matcha and rooibos varieties as well as a selection of prepared blends. TotaliTea’s tea-savvy clerks can also create custom tea blends to suit your taste preferences and serve you a sample mug on the spot. Tea accessories include pots, cups, “blooming” tea flowers and tea-infused lip balm.

DAVIDsTEA

7
620-26 McKenzie Towne Gate SE, Calgary, AB T2Z 0N2

This tea chain has several Calgary locations including one in McKenzie Towne. The shop’s tea counter is stocked with loose leaves for purchase in quantity, but customers can enjoy a cup in the seating area. Davids also carries a lengthy list of exotic iced tea blends with names such as organic coconut ice, elderflower spritz and matcha matsu. And speaking of the powdered Japanese tea, the shop’s got several flavours of the stuff plus matcha-making equipment.

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