Aloha!! We are just about ready to open our doors at Waikiki Tea and couldn't be more excited. Our team has been working on this project for over a year, and to see everything finally come together is a dream come true.
We're located on Beach Walk, just a minute stroll from some of our favorite Waikiki restaurants like Wasabi Bistro and Tonkatsu Ginza Bairin. We're also a short walk from the beautiful Halekulani Hotel (make sure to check out the mai tais at House Without a Key. Go during sunset time for the most beautiful experience, complete with live music and hula).
We were walking around Waikiki about a year ago, and realized there was no good place to simply stop for quiet, low key break over tea and cake. There were lots of busy cafes, fancy restaurants, and buzzing bars. But no calm and elegant afternoon spot where we could sit and catch up over iced teas and perhaps a slice of cake. We started plotting ideas and one year later...here we are!
We'll be keeping this blog updated with ongoings at the teahouse, but for this very first blog post, let us take you around the boutique!
First is our cafe menu, complete our own local, made in Hawaii teas and coffees. We offer everything from classic straight teas (green, oolong, black, and herbal tisanes) along with a special selection of "Island Essence" teas which evoke the spirit and flavors of our beautiful islands. Make sure to try the Maui Earl Grey (like traditional Earl Grey but also kissed with lavender...check out the Alii Kula lavender farms next time you are on Maui) and Jasmine-Mamaki which blends green jasmine tea with locally grown Mamaki (a delicious, ancient Hawaiian herbal brew). Under the "Iced" section of the menu, you'll find all of our housemade specialities including a fresh mint and lime soda (especially amazing on a hot Honolulu day), and plantation tea which is Hawaii's take on the Arnold Palmer. Instead of mixing iced tea and lemonade, we do iced tea and pineapple juice! Hits the spot so good. And if you're a coffee person? We have you covered with Kona coffee from the Big Island.
To pair with our drinks, we are proud to serve cakes from Lady M! We are the only place in Hawaii to import Lady M cakes straight from the headquarters in New York City. We'll have the Signature Mille Crêpes, Green Tea Mille Crêpes, Passion Fruit Mille Crêpes (which was inspired by Hawaii!), Gateau Fromage, and Chocolate Arc-en-Ciel. Lady M is always our first stop on any New York City visit, so to be able to have these cakes in Hawaii, at our very own boutique is pretty amazing.
And last but not least, I wanted to touch on omiyage. Omiyage a Japanese/Hawaii tradition of always bringing little treats back to family and friends when you return from travel. It doesn't have to be anything big or expensive, it's most about the gesture and thought. When visiting friends on the mainland we always bring local mac nuts, cookies, and other local snacks for our friends. People love them, and the fact you were thoughtful enough to carry this all way to the mainland counts as much as the gift itself. With this in mind, we've created a collection of omiyage-sized treats for purchase. We have little tins of our teas (the same teas we brew and serve in the boutique), and matching bags of coffee, all made in Hawaii. We also have a set of beautiful jams (fresh made on Kauai using all local fruits only from the island). We'll be adding to the collection in the coming weeks, so keep checking back at Waikiki Tea for new omiyage.
See you at the boutique soon!