THE CITY // Tea Zone

I love tea book - Tea Zone Aberdeen

It was a pleasant surprise to open the curtains to a perfectly blue sky - not a cloud in sight - when I woke up on Sunday morning. Sunny days tend to have one of two effects on me: they make me feel wild and adventurous, ready to stick on my hiking shoes and explore; or they make me cheerful and girly, ready to lounge around in the park with my favourite ladies.

On this particular occasion, I had that lazy Sunday feeling going on and was definitely leaning more towards the latter category. Luckily - though it might not quite have been park weather - the #Abzmeet gang were on hand to help channel girliness and chilled out vibes!

Tea blends - Tea Zone Aberdeen

#Abzmeet has become a regular fixture on the calendar over the last 8 months, with a different collection of faces-behind-the-blogs making it along to each one. For this particular gathering we decided to head on down to Tea Zone - a recently opened little cafe overlooking the city's Castlegate.

Opened to the public just 4 weeks ago, Tea Zone is the brainchild of Maria Oleksiak, whose vision is to create a boutique tea shop - an alternative to all those coffee chains, instead offering up to 70 unique blends of tea.

It's very much a small business in its early days, with Maria pouring hours of blood, sweat and tears into renovating a building that has long sat empty since its reptile shop days! We were given the privilege of being the first customers to use the venue's second, larger seating area - a space she had just finished late the previous evening!

It's a bright, airy space filled with rustic crates, wooden tables, floaty rainbow curtains and dangling light bulbs that gave me serious interior envy! When I chatted with Maria - who couldn't have been any more lovely - she told me that she has lots of little touches to complete before her vision is fully achieved: more rustic/vintage additions and accessories that make tea the focal piece.

She already has an enormous range of tea blends to choose from, all of which can be served in house or purchased pre-packaged to brew at home. Handily organised into green or black-based blends, choices ranged from "Angels Singing" or "Pina Colada" green tea, to a simple "English Breakfast" or an "Orange Cinnamon" black variety. I opted for the black "Caffe Latte" - because who doesn't want some coffee beans thrown in with their tea?!

Teapot - Tea ZOne Aberdeen

Our teas were served to us in individual transparent teapots, each sat above its own tea-light to keep it warm - a handy little tool when pouring 3-4 cups from each pot! My Caffe Latte was lovely - a warming black tea with a very subtle hint of coffee, enjoyed with a wee splash of milk. Everyone else's drinks seemed to go down well, sampling a range of black and green varieties and inadvertently managing to split our table into distinctly coloured halves!

To accompany the tea comes a colourful selection of cakes and bakes - some familiar and others less so. Maria kindly explained that some goods, such as the chocolate orange brownies (which went down a treat!), are sourced externally from CAKE on Rosemount Place, while others are baked internally to more traditional Polish recipes, with offerings such as the mysterious "Plesniak" or a layered raspberry and chocolate cake that also earned a solid thumbs up.

Cake - Tea ZOne Aberdeen

We enjoyed all these treats while having a good old natter and soaking up the sun as it poured through the window. (I may well have left with a tan on half my face!) It was lovely to catch-up with the ladies and to meet a few new faces too. We talked photography and frustrating blog templates; chatted about books, babies and Break Out Games; had a little moan about the ridiculous cost of living in this city; learned what it is everyone actually does, when they're not busy blogging; and generally enjoyed a good old chin-wag! The girls are all lovely and it's refreshing to be in the company of people who "get" this blogging lark and don't question your need to photograph all of the things!

Abzmeet Abzchat bloggers

If you're a blogger in Aberdeen City or Shire, you can like us over on Facebook for information on any upcoming meets. We've also kicked off a weekly Twitter chat on Wednesdays from 8-9pm, which anyone is welcome to join in. Just follow the hash-tag #Abzchat and you'll find us all chatting away, ready for anyone to jump in. I should probably point out that any gentlemen out there are also welcome. We've had a couple of guys in the chat, but we're still waiting for someone brave enough to join us at a meet! ;)

Visit Tea Zone at:
1-3 Justice Street


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