One Tea Lounge – where matcha meets fire, liquid smoke, theatre and instagram-worthy baogers.
Owner David Yip opened up One Tea Lounge to commemorate his fiancée, Daisy who passed away in 2014 from cancer. It was her wish that David open up a restaurant bar on York Street.
The colour orange features throughout the space as it was her favourite colour and matcha, the most prevalent ingredient on the menu is supplied by his family Taka Tea Garden also featuring on the menu heavily as a theatrical device is liquid nitrogen, its high demand means 15kg of it is required, three times a week.
The ramen burger which kickstarted One Tea Lounge’s success is offered in slider form along with a rice burger slider and matcha baoger. You are able to choose between original Wagyu beef, teriyaki chicken or miso tofu (vegetarian) as fillings. They all hold up very well when held, the matcha baoger bun stands out for me but they are all great in their own way.
Tasting exactly like an apple crumble, with notes of cinnamon, green apple and buttery crumble.
Seasoned well and with only a pinch of green tea powder so it really just tastes like fries.
Prepared exactly like a lollipop, with the bone pared until bare, acting as a handle, these juicy morsels of cripsy chicken are fantastic and I could eat twenty of these.
One of the mains that involves fire is the head-turning flaming wagyu volcano. The dish is served on a hot lava stone and by means of a small handheld torch, the dish suddenly erupts into some glowing flames. The onion ring in the centre funnels the fire from the alcohol cooking off and is there for aesthetics too. After cooking for about three minutes it must be consumed shortly afterwards lest the tender wagyu become tough. The wagyu fat imparted their beefiness onto the mushrooms, caramelising them to umami perfection.
Lava Stone grill 9+ WAGYU BEEF 180gm with Shimeji and Enoki on a Hot Lava Stone $48 with matcha sea salt, green tea hollandaise, yakiniku sauce
The lava stone sets cost $150 each, taking 30 minutes to heat up, an hour and a half to cool down, each set can only be used once a night.
And now some liquid nitrogen fun arrives in the form of these matcha test tubes. You have the option of going with non-alcoholic mocktails or cocktails which contains Suntory whisky. The cocktail version is quite fruity, sweet and the pop rock candy fizzles in your mouth with each gulp.
Whilst looking simple, quite a bit of prep work goes into these baogers. The ice cream which is bought in, has to be melted and then moulded into perfect patties. A red bean paste is simmered until caramel-like, then both the ice cream patty and red bean paste is sandwiched between two sweet buns, deep fried until crispy on the outside. They’re very good and no wonder they feature on instagram so heavily when searching the One Tea hashtag.
Rum was lit on fire by a handheld flame torch and then poured onto the oozing matcha lava cake, the flames dissipated within seconds but while the cake was on fire it was a sight to behold. Alas the rum flavour spoiled the dessert by being too strong in alcohol, however the matcha lava cake tasted very strongly of matcha.
Like all the dishes here, the tofu white chocolate cheesecake is presented beautifully, the tube was pillowy soft, tasting more of white chocolate than tofu. The freeze dried strawberries and lemon curd were tart and completed this dessert.
The flaming Christmas tree is a special cocktail developed for the Christmas season. David tells us that anything with over 60% alcohol is ideal for lighting on fire, the Bacardi rum used contains 75% alcohol so it burns very well albeit very quickly. He lit a wine glass full of rum and poured it beginning from the top of the Galliano liqueur, the flames glowed a wonderful shade of blue as you can see in the photos and creeped down into the waiting cocktail glasses beneath. I find the green tea lychee cocktail more lychee and the strawberry sherry one is redolent in – well strawberry, tasting like so.
See what the instagram fuss is all about at One Tea Lounge.
MsBrulee dined as guests of One Tea Lounge. Opinions however are my own.
Mon – Wed: 11 am to 3 pm, 5:30 pm to 10 pm
Thu & Fri: 11 am to 3 pm, 5:30 pm to Midnight
Sat: 5:30 pm to 12 Midnight