It would be an understatement to say that the quest for a ‘proper cuppa’ is a British institution. I absolutely love tea, which would make my 15 year-old self’s jaw hit the floor, as I never used to- I just didn’t see how something that was essentially a cup of hot water and milk could taste any good! Oh, how wrong I was. I am now obsessed with all things tea– green tea, fruit tea, and of course the classic English Breakfast tea. I am from the home of Yorkshire Tea, after all (the factory is a 5-minute walk from my house!)
When me and my mum visited Manchester last week to see Take That (I won’t go too far into it, or I’ll just start gushing about how amazing it was and how there was a flying bike and sea creatures and breathe, Emma), we stayed overnight so we could have a little shop the day after. It was a happy accident that when we went to see Olly Murs last month, we stumbled across the adorable Proper Tea at Manchester Cathedral, and this time we had the chance to pay them a visit!
Okay, just one picture of Take That- safe to say I was obsessed with that flying bike… and Gary Barlow, of course.
When we arrived at the gorgeous little tea room just next to Manchester Cathedral (it’s actually inside the visitors’ centre), I was instantly excited by the gorgeous interior and pretty little flowers in a jar on each table. They have an extensive tea menu, but as anything that isn’t English Breakfast or Peppermint was at least £4.50, we stuck to the basics- I’d love to try a different tea next time though! The milk comes in a little glass bottle, and you get a ‘perfect tea’ timer, which indicates how long to leave your tea to brew depending on the strength you want. Once it’s brewed to your liking (I’m a medium kinda gal) you strain the tea into another pot, before pouring it into your cup and drinking away!
Don’t get me wrong, give me a tea bag in a mug any day and I’ll be happy, but tea leaves and a dainty cup and saucer make an extra special cuppa- there’s no denying it.
Their food menu was just as tantalising (if not more!) than the tea menu, and we both ordered the same sandwich although I could have had any of the options! There was houmous, caramelised onion and some other lovely fillings on that page and I wanted them all- NOM. We had the Chicken, Avocado, Pesto and Roasted Pepper ciabatta (I should’ve opted for rye bread because I’m trying to cut out white bread but ciabatta so goooood).
I was massively craving avocado, so this pretty much made my day, and the pesto and sweet red peppers just went so well with the chicken and avocado. Sandwich heaven. Did I mention it was served toasted? Yup, sandwich heaven just got switched up a notch.
We were so stuffed from our sandwiches and drinking all the tea, that we couldn’t manage a slice of the amazing cakes on offer (whatever that green one below was, I wanted it), but we did share an adorable little brownie/muffin/cupcake concoction (it was essentially a brownie, in a muffin/cupcake shape) and it was pure chocolatey goodness. It was only £1 as it was so teeny-tiny, but it was the little bit of sweetness we needed, and ideal to take away for later. Plus, it was served on that adorable plate with a cake fork- too perfect.
All those white packets and jars? All tea. Yep.
The only downside was the toilets being in the basement of the visitors’ centre, meaning a bit of a maze to get there! We did have this pretty cool bridge to walk across though…
Even though the girl who served us seemed to be in training, the service was very friendly and quick, and she made the excellent recommendation of the brownie muffin- good choice! I’d definitely recommend paying a visit to Proper Tea if you’re ever in Manchester- it’s just a 3-minute walk from the Arndale Centre and Printworks, so a great lunch or rest stop if you’re indulging in some retail therapy like we were!
Have you ever been to Proper Tea? Any other good foodie spots in Manchester for me to try? Me and George are heading there next week before flying to Amsterdam and I’d love to try some more new places!