Formal or casual, tea drinking is a social ritual that is part of the ebb and flow of everyday Scottish life. Countless cups are brewed every minute and are accompanied by all sorts of gastronomic delights. Whether a classic cuppa, builder’s tea or fancy loose leaf, indulge in our heartwarming guide to the most charming tearooms in Edinburgh.
Between the colourful tea selection and inviting vivid décor, Eteaket Tea Room can turn the most dedicated coffee drinker into a tea lover! The meticulously curated leaf teas are second to none and the cakes mouthwatering. Like true Culture Trippers, the Eteaket tea troupe combines their passion for tea and travel by personally visiting each plantation, meeting with every tea master and sampling each type before it is served in the tea boutique. Cool as can be, this trendy tearoom brings tea out of the dark ages and into the now.
Clarinda’s Tearoom embodies those irreplaceable memories of staying over at granny’s. Named after Scottish poet Robert Burns’ most famous illicit lover Clarinda (her real name was Agnes Maclehose), the homemade cakes and heartwarming food compliments the good old-fashioned Scottish tea selection. The sea of vintage plates, intriguing antique knick-knacks and lace tablecloths add that extra touch of charm upon this legendary local tea institution.
After travelling the world tasting tea as they go, owners Isabelle and Adam formed Rosevear Tea, a true tea mecca run by tea gurus. If you dream in all things tea, are guilty of hoarding specialty teas or are looking for a calming liquid remedy, this is your place. Situated in Bruntsfield, the shop stocks fancy teas of all types from across the world while wee tables invite tea fans to sit back, sip and relax. Make sure to check their website for special events like an authentic Japanese matcha experience or tea tips.
Like music, Tempo Tea Bar seduces all who experience it. Perhaps the coolest tea place in Edinburgh, Tempo serves bubble tea worth raving about. Choose your bass line of either Assam, green jasmine, redbush or camomile, pick a melody in the form of a myriad of flavours, decide on a hot, cold or ice-blended rhythm and create the perfect harmony by adding tapioca, popping or jelly boba. Tasty and enticing, this bubble tea trend, which came to fame during the 1980s in Taiwan, has hit Edinburgh by storm. Whether chocolate, lychee, fruit or milk, visiting this tapioca boba-adorned playground is a must for tea aficionados.
Through combining life’s great pleasures — books, tea, and cakes — The Colonnades At The Signet Library is a magical place to sip the day away. Glamorous fluted columns, tribes of literature and grandiose neo-classical balustrades add to the enchanting atmosphere. When the ritual of afternoon tea calls, The Colonnades is definitely worth a visit. Thanks to the Royal Warrant and award-winning caterers Heritage Portfolio, you can expect the tea and cakes to be as beautiful as the surroundings.
If tea cosies are your jam and granny’s cakes hit the spot, Forsyth’s Tea Room in the Old Town is the place to go. The patterned carpet, exposed stone walls and wooden ceiling beams create a cosy cavernous atmosphere. Those eager to start a kitschy teapot collection can take notes from this wildly unpretentious tearoom — the adorable ever-changing collection makes you want to order every tea imaginable. This wee home away from home is the perfect spot for a classic cuppa and old school eats.
Casa Angelina, a vintage tea boutique and patisserie graced with personality, is the brainchild of a talented pastry chef with a desirable resume. This tastefully decorated hangout stocks a wondrous array of teas from Eteaket — think Scottish Breakfast, Chocolate Abyss, Bollywood Dreams Chai and White Peony, to name a few. Roobois lovers will go wild over the vast selection, including the strawberries and cream rooibos. Scrumptious eats and the Eteaket elixirs result in a whole lot of love.
A brilliant blend of new and old, Anteaques is a clever idea. This charming antique shop doubles up as an epicentre for specialist teas. While scanning every surface for the next home accent or antique collectable, tea enthusiasts can indulge in a sumptuous selection of tea and tasty delights. Genius! From classic black and special to green, scented and infusion, the fine loose leaf tea list is impressive. And, all are available to purchase, along with antique tea accessories (think tea tongs and tea socks) and silver galore.