Saturday, April 25, 2009

Radiance Tea House with Showtime Ops! 04-24-2009

Location: 158 West 58th St.
Time: 12:30pm
People: Showtime Ops! Sa-Sha, PeeWee, BeBe, AP and myself

Feelings: Sa-Sha suggested we try this wonderful tea house for lunch. When we first walked in, it immediately gave us a feeling of zen and tranquility, and I was amazed how spacious the place was. I could not believe a peaceful tea house such as this could exist in midtown west of all places. It it truly a hidden gem. Many customers were sitting with their laptops while sipping aromatic tea, suggesting that the place provides free wi-fi for their customers.

They have a large selection of teas as well as very healthy and light food options. BeBe's artisan blooming tea with osmanthus flower was quite beautiful to look at (Lots of "woo" "aahh"), and and it tasted quite smooth and delightful. My Matcha was a bit of the weak side and did not have enough bitter-sweet flavors. I grew up enjoying traditional Matcha from Kyoto, so I might be the toughest critic when it comes to Matcha.

The rest of the group got the lunch specials. Sa-Sha and PeeWee's steamed dumplings were flavorful and light, and especially Sa-Sha was extremely satisfied with her chicken dumplings since they had a lot of dill in them. (That triggered us some random questionnaire of "What's your favorite herb?") AP was not too excited about his rice balls saying, "Well, they are just rice balls." But he was still very impressed with the place nonetheless.

We all enjoyed colorful and sweet motchi dessert, which is my favorite Japanese dessert of all. It is healthy yet sweet and filling, and we all left the place guilt free and determined to come back again soon.

The atmosphere, tea, and food were all amazing, but to top all of them was their service. The waitstaff was courteous and friendly, and he made sure we were satisfied with their service without obnoxious midtown way. I am so thankful I found this wonderful oasis near my work that is Times Sqaure deli hell. I felt this is truly an authentic tea house one might usually find below 23rd Street, and it is refreshing to find one in usually loud and valgar midtown.

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