Chasaengwon, A Tea Haven
Did you know that white, green, oolong and black tea are all made from the same tea leaf? I didn't until a few months ago. It's safe to say I've been ignorant about tea for most of my life. I've always enjoyed drinking tea at Chinese restaurants but never really took up drinking tea until this past winter.
A few months ago Chasaengwon caught my eye while I was driving down Wilshire. Oooh~ a Korean tea shop!
Chasaengwon is the seventh and only international branch of the Hankook Tea Company, which is run out of South Korea. The company has been around for about fifty years working with Honam Tea Farm to produce high-quality tea. The packaging and branding of this high-quality tea is very beautifully executed in artfully patterned cylindrincal containers.
I tried the Gamnong Green Tea, which is the highest grade of green tea that they grow. The tea came with a whole emsemble: tea cup, small pitcher for the hot water, thermos with additional water, and a tea pot in which to steep the tea. The tea has a very delicate flavor and color with a mild toasted, nuttiness to its aroma, almost like toasted seaweed (gheem). It was delicious. Good thing I had my own thermos.
green tea latte
Also on the menu were conventional drinks with an unconventional tea-twist such as Green Tea Latte and Green Tea Mocha. I didn't know what to expect from the Green Tea Latte at first because I couldn't quite put the flavor of tea and latte together in my mind but it worked very well. The subtle tea flavor came through well because the latte was not very sweet but milky.
The shop is a nice place to hang out especially in the evenings now that it is getting so warm. It stays open until 12am during the week and 10pm on Saturday.
3839 Wilshire Blvd. Unit C