Young Tea isn’t just a place to have a drink. It is a tea shop with a full-blown philosophy, summarized thus: “Tea can be the one thing that takes us back to a simpler time.”
In practical terms what that means is a back-to-basics attitude that renounces artificial flavors and sweeteners (no powdered taste enhancers here!) and uses fresh local milk and house-made syrups to create beverages that really do taste virtuous. In fact, one member of our group found her milk tea to be a let-down compared to the tea she gets elsewhere that is more potent thanks to the other place’s use of strong artificial flavors and sweeteners!
Of course, there are all sorts of freshly brewed unadulterated teas available hot or iced, but the house specialty is milk tea in such flavors as red bean matcha, grass jelly, black sugar, jasmine, and buckwheat. These are smooth and available in whatever degree of sweetness you specify, with or without a pile of tapioca bubbles at the bottom of the glass (aka boba).
In addition to tea, there are fruit-juice and herbal drinks (hibiscus, rose, lemon, etc.), smoothies, and, of course, coffee.
Young tea is a clean and serene retreat in the city’s bustling International District: a fine place to kick back, exhale, and be natural.