As a Londoner, I need something strong to get me out and about in the city during the hectic week days. My natural addiction to caffeine is probably a common problem amongst all of the ambitious and multi-tasking generation we’ve grown up to be. But I’ve discovered something better, move aside flat whites, say hello to my new friend, matcha latte. And, for the weekend, a nice beautiful cone of matcha soft serve ice cream!
What is Matcha?
Matcha is already a staple in every Japanese household’s cupboard and somewhat steady in the US. This is because the Japanese have discovered a clever way to brew your tea and eat it too so to speak. It’s high-quality green tea ground up into a fine powder that you can add to smoothies, juices, and of course into your latte instead of coffee. Served in the most concentrated and highly sought after form, matcha has high levels of antioxidants, and is said to speed up metabolism and reduce stress.
So what’s not to like when you are grabbing your morning cuppa, without the guilt of hitting yourself with caffeine high but instead injecting it full of natural goodness from matcha green tea that is going to keep you energised and ready to face the day?
Where you can buy matcha lattes in London
I think it’s an art to make really nice and smooth matcha lattes without that grassy aftertaste and a frothy foam to compliment the slight bitterness of matcha.
My favourite places to buy matcha lattes are the following:
1. Best Matcha Latte for First-time Drinkers – Notes
Notes is your perfect start into matcha if you never had it before. Their matcha latte is more on the sweet side, which is great for first time tasters of matcha. This independent coffee shop are based in both Trafalgar Square and also Covent Garden, which makes it the perfect pick-me-up on a walk through central London.
Address: 30 St Martin’s Lane, Covent Garden, London WC2N 4ER
2. Best Matcha Latte for Seasoned Drinkers – Tombo Cafe
Tombo Cafe takes matcha very seriously here. In fact, you’ll be in for the full Japanese experience, especially their Japanophile-friendly tea sets and match packaged to take home. I recommend a visit here highly if you like this sort of thing.
Address: 28 D’Arblay Street, London W1F 8EW, England
3. Best Matcha Latte Experience – Lagu
Although Tombo Cafe takes a close second, Lagu is miles ahead of the competition in terms of the cutlery and crockery used in this restaurant. The matcha latte is smooth and full of flavour, you can even ask for an extra sprinkle of matcha powder for that additional kick. There is a free library of books to browse and house plants to help you stay zen.
Address: 151 Lavender Hill, Clampham Junction
4. Best Matcha Latte for Minimalists – Tsujiri Matcha
I have an obsession with the matcha soft serve ice cream here. Maybe it is because of the beautiful white interior of the cafe, and the smiling Japanese waitresses who brings back memories of my trip to Japan in my early 20’s. Tsujiri is a Japanese brand that is now going through tremendous expansion throughout US and UK. Their matcha tea set is fantastic, and also make sure to try their matcha ice drinks for those who like it cold!
Address: 47 Rupert St, London W1D 7PD
5. Best Matcha Soft Serve Ice Cream for Special Effects – Milk Train Cafe
The latest craze all over Instagram at the moment, and you would have spotted the Milk Train Cafe’s floating cloud structure around their matcha soft serve ice cream. You can opt-in to have your matcha ice cream served with a cloud of candy floss. Oh and they have hojicha and plain vanilla flavour too!