Wednesday, 16 March 2011
Leaf tea shop & bar
I mentioned the other day that I visited Leaf for the first time at the weekend. Leaf is a tea shop and bar that has been established in Liverpool for a long time now but this was my first visit as since the move to Bold Street, it is easier to get to. (I know, it wasn't that far away, but it was out of my normal way so I never went although was sorely tempted by their pudding club lots of times.)
I always saw Leaf as a rival to Brew Tea bar, but since going I see that although their business model is the same (homegrown business, focusing on tea rather than coffee, using loose leaf tea) they are both very different and cater for different needs! Leaf is the kind of place I would go if I wanted a relaxing meal and a wide variety of dishes with a cuppa on the side, but Brew is the place that I would go for a proper good cup of tea (or smootea or steamer or earl grey latte) with maybe a slice of cake on the side. Brew is closer to the coffee shop model whilst Leaf is more of an up market cafe.
We went to Leaf on a Saturday lunch time so it was very busy but we managed to nab a seat downstairs. We ordered the english breakfast, homemade hummus, lady grey tea and assam breakfast tea. Scott is a bit of a tea connoisseur and wasn't that impressed with the tea blends. Most of them were just fruity teas and there wasn't much scope in the range of black or green loose leaf teas. Still, my cuppa lady grey was very nice. The hummus I had was amazing! I got SO much of it, I couldn't eat it all. It was flavoured with lemon & coriander too and tasted really fresh. I prefer homemade hummus over shop bought so loved this. Scott's English breakfast didn't look like anything too special really but he enjoyed it. The service wasn't amazing and we overheard the couple next to us moan that the service is always slow at the weekend and that they'd been told they'd have a half an hour wait for just some sandwiches!
I think I will go back to Leaf for a nice lunch but if I want a really nice cup of tea, I will always go to Brew. They have vintage fashion fairs at Leaf too and lots of other events and it's a really nice venue for it. You can see some more photos of the new Leaf on Bold Street here.