Friday, April 25, 2014

Visit: Puff Cha

Tucked away on a quiet street in Hell's Kitchen is a new Thai cafe offering a tasty spin on the classic curry puff, along with other Thai dishes. More importantly, they have a large tea menu that's worth some attention.

I was happy to see a few selections of black, oolong, green, white, and pu-erh teas. There is also chai and lots of herbal choices. My friends and I all wanted different teas so we chose a cup each instead of a pot. When the teas arrived they smelled wonderful and tasted just as good.  I chose a Darjeeling oolong which was delicate and flavorful. On a separate trip I had the organic pu-erh which was also quite nice and a great pairing with the greasy (but delicious) puffs. My companions enjoyed their teas as well.

I did however have two small gripes. First, the cups don't have handles and are extremely hot to the touch. A thin napkin wrapped around the outside didn't help (seen in the first photo above). We had to wait quite a bit for the tea to cool before we could touch the cups. My second issue is with the infusers. I don't like using small restrictive infusers since the leaves don't get a chance to open and breathe. However, our teas were still quite tasty and satisfying. Our server was also attentive with hot water refills.

Pu-erh leaves
Puff Cha has a narrow but cheerful dining area. The staff is friendly and let you sit as long as you like. It's a cute place for lunch or a cup of tea and a pastry. If you are going to try a few of the curry puffs I'd recommend a pu-erh tea to wash it down, as eating more than one will definitely exceed your daily grease allotment. Next time I go back I will probably order a pot of tea, and one of the tempting sweets.

Puff Cha: 457 50th street NY, NY 10019- Recommended for a pot of tea and treats 

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