"I like the ritual of tea," said Brian Murphy, owner of the new Tea Zaanti shop in Salt Lake City. "It requires you to take time for yourself."
Here is a snapshot of three new offerings in Salt Lake City and three old favorites where residents can enjoy a cup of tea.
After several years of selling tea online, Brian Murphy opened this shop six months ago in a renovated house on 1100 East. Customers at Tea Zaanti — "zaanti" is the word for peace in the Thai language — can sit at a modern bar made of wood and metal, or lounge in one of the comfortable nooks to enjoy one of about 80 loose-leaf teas from around the world.
Murphy said his interest in tea was piqued after traveling to Thailand to visit a college friend who had mulberry trees and harvested the leaves for tea.
One pot of tea (about two cups) is $3.60. There also are toast ($2) and cookies ($1.25). Tea in pouches or refillable tins (starting at $9.95) also is available for purchase.
Unique feature • The color-coded "TEA-zer" board near the cash register helps customers learn about the different kinds of teas and select one that fits their tastes. Pick one of the small round canisters off the magnetic board — choices include black, oolong, green, white, herbal and others — then open it to see and smell the leaves.
Where • 1324 S. 1100 East, Salt Lake City; 801-906-8312 or teazaanti.com. Open Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.- 7 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m. -5 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. -3 p.m.
TEAramisu by The Emperor's Tea
While M. C. Rivetti and his partner Jason Woodland are serious about high-quality tea, they wanted the name of their Salt Lake City tea shop to be fun. Thus came TEAramisu, a play on the famous Italian dessert, which means "pick me up."
The shop, which will celebrate its one-year anniversary in February, has several cozy rooms where customers can relax and enjoy a pot of tea alone or with friends. Customers also can buy pouches of loose-leaf tea to take home.
All the tea — about 80 varieties — is premium, organic loose leaf from The Emporer's Tea, an online company that Rivetti launched in 1999. Rivetti also makes Italian desserts at the shop, including panna cotta, cannoli, biscotti and, of course, a tiramisu made with a green tea macha powder.