Although Melbourne is the coffee capital of Australia, there's another caffeinated drink that's even better for sitting and mulling things over...plus it can be topped up with a cheeky hot water refill. Yep, it's the humble tea.
‘Tis the season for snuggling, cuppa in hand. And it’s not all doom and gloom here in Melbourne, with amazing tea options to make sure the weather doesn’t rain on our parades. Here’s our list of damp day havens that are doing well to keep our pinkies up and our bodies toasty this autumn.
Hopetoun Tea Rooms
Established in 1892, Hopetoun was started by founder Lady Hopetoun, who managed to flawlessly fuse old world charm with fine dining. Ahead of her time, that girl. If the CBD bustle is getting you down, escape to the Block Arcade where you’ll find a crowd of people with their noses pressed up against the window like Scrooge at Christmas. Pro-tip: It’s definitely a parent pleaser! (Plus, Mother’s Day is coming up in a month *winks*)
Impala & Peacock
This Melbourne tea hub shares its love of loose-leaf one vintage cup at a time. In fact it develops its own artisanal blends. If you’re a tea-thusiast eyeing a solid Earl Grey, or something a little more exotic, Impala & Peacock has both. Good name, too.
The Tea Salon
In the city and in need of a pick-me-up? A good ol’ cup of tea at Emporium’s tea salon is sure to save the day. Plus it’s the perfect spot to rest your feet after the cardio workout that is navigating Melbourne Emporium (we swear, Hogwarts Castle had fewer floors...).
Brew it your way at Melbourne's first concept “blend-your-own” tea store, which means you could totally spend ALL DAY choosing which flavours to fill your pot with! Royal's staff are always on hand to help you pick your palatte. They even have take-home packs so you can experiment in the comfort of your own home. Get crea-tea-ve!
Your one-stop shop for tea, teaware and teaology. If you're still asking “Who’s even got time to make and enjoy a whole pot of tea?!” it's probably time to drop by this little Camberwell nook and unwind. Join Cuppa Cha’s well-travelled founder on her journey through the six fascinating tea families.
Melbourne CBD and more
An oldie, but consistently underrated. If you’re up for oolong, fruity, herbal, floral or green, they’ve got it all. Come for the tea, stay for the yum cha, as this teahouse combines the authentic Chinese dining experience (think deliciously hot dumplings and wontons!) with a series of elegant tea merchandise to take home. We're sold.
Miss Marple's Tearoom
The trick with Miss Marples is getting a freakin' seat. It's that popular. But if you're tummy’s rumbling after a jaunt through Sherbrooke Forest, this is where you go. It's a traditional English cottage-style tea room, and it's famous for the softest scones paired with chilled cream, jam and a taste of England (Devonshire tea!). The founder was a big fan of Agatha Christie's novel character Miss Marple and decorated the place with floral curtains and matching tablecloths, topped with plenty of Miss Marple memorabilia. After your scone, wander down to Tea Leaves (just down the main road) where you can pick up literally any tea in existence (don't quote us on that, but they stock a lot of tea).
Fairfield Boat House
Want your tea with a view? This Yarra-side boathouse was once a camping area in 1908 and has since undergone a bunch of renovations, including its famous deck and riverside terrace. Perks of living in the 21st century! On top of that, it's also a bar and grill for all your F&B needs. Bring the younguns, as there's a fairy floss machine on busy weekends and kids rides for only 40c a go!
Mary Eats Cake
Doesn't matter if it’s tea for two, twelve or twenty! Mary Eats Cake (aka The Brunswick Tea Room) has your tea situation sorted. Their affordable add-ons are also a bonus. Think cheese and fruit boards or gifts in pretty packaging for under $10. Tea addicts, give it a swirl. You'll thank us later.
Got the feels for a coffee instead? Check out Melbourne’s best brews.
Image credit: Vee O