Tea for you and me

Join me on my epic quest to find the best tea ever


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Karstadt, Cologne

Poppy seed cake and tea in Karstadt, Cologne

Poppy seed cake and tea in Karstadt, Cologne

Karstadt, Breite Straße 103-135,
50667 Köln

The Karstadt department store in Cologne was great. The department store restaurant was big with fresh food and many chefs. There were 8 varieties of smoothie, 4 varities of soup, fresh meat that you picked and they cooked for you, 10 varieties of vegetable side dish, fresh veg they stir fried for you, 4 varieties of potato, fresh fruit and puddings (fill a bowl for 3 euros) and at least 12 varieties of cake all for under 3 euros a slice. The tea was loose leaf and in a mini chest of drawers. Each drawer had a different variety and you filled up your ‘tea egg’ with it and away you go. We came here twice and each time the cake was beautiful and the tea good too. This photo is from our visit on our last day in Cologne. The cake is poppy seed and it’s thick and filling and tasty and not as sweet as our cakes which makes it all the more satisfying.

Teapot? No.
Leaf tea? Yes, from a selection of 9. I had black tea with orange flowers and it was beautiful.
Milk jug? No, but fresh milk available from a dispenser.
Price? 1.80 euros.
Cake? Oh, the cake! So much delectable cake.
Go again? Yes.


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ICE train to Cologne

This has to be the most exciting tea blog entry yet – a cup of tea on board an ICE train somewhere between Brussels and Cologne. I hadn’t had a cup of tea all day, even though I’d got up at 4.30am. I was planning on getting one once we got through the passport control at St Pancras but no such luck. Even if the British can’t do trains that leave and arrive when they’re meant to, you would hope we could provide tea, but no. After passport control there was a sea of families and seating and only a WHSmith or a Cafe Nero. It took me ages to queue up for water (Cafe Nero being too long a queue) and I figured I’d just get tea on the Eurostar. Oh no. The queue for the buffet car on the Eurostar (according to the length of time our noisy neighbours took to get tea) was an hour. An hour!

On the ICE though we had a trolley come round to serve you at your seat. I heard tea offered and I was looking forward to it. If there was ever a cup of tea that was anticipated, it was this one.

It was okay. It wasn’t a cup of tea that would normally make it onto this blog as it was green tea, but I’m bending the rules and allowing it in because I so wanted it to be black tea with milk!

Teapot? No.
Leaf tea? A tea bag, but a large high quality tea bag with big leaves inside rather than the usual mulch. Green tea with lemon and mango.
Milk jug? No, no milk with green tea.
Price? 2.70 euros.
Cake? Nope.
Go again? No, it was a very expensive cup of tea.