Cheese tea is the latest Asian beverage trend making its way to the U.S.
While it may sound far from appetizing, trendsetters in China have been known to line up for hours to experience cheese tea. Now, this beverage trend is flying in from Asia to make its mark in the U.S., with several eateries introducing the quirky drink to their menus. While it remains to be seen if it will take off overseas, the Global Love report from Cassandra further reveals how young people’s exposure to different cultures has heightened their appreciation for unusual global cuisines.
LITTLE FLUFFY HEAD CAFE
LA-based shop Little Fluffy Head Cafe offers three cheese tea options: classic, crème brûlée, and cheddar cheese. The cheddar option has literal cheese chunks interspersed throughout the cream, so people with texture issues might consider bypassing this one due to it's intensity. The crème brûlée was tasty, says one reviewer, but a bit too sweet. For tea options, the shop splits the menu into Classic (jasmine green tea and the like), Premium (think lychee oolong and more exotic flavors), and Milk Teas.
NYC-based eatery Happy Lemon defines the beverage as a salty cheese tea to better encourage adventurous drinkers. This version might be the best way to dip your toes into the trend, as it is very easy to enjoy on-the-go and only costs $3.50. The drink starts with brewed black or green tea or a chocolate shake and is topped with a creamy cheese foam made with whipped cream, milk, and cream cheese and finished with a pinch of rock salt.
STEAP TEA BAR
While admitting it is a "horrible name," SF's STEAP Tea Bar incorporates the standard base tea, usually recommending iced black or green tea, and adds a fluffy, thick cheese-cream topping. When served, it resembles a freshly poured beer topped with frappuccino whipped cream. The location serves the drink sans straw, and a 40-degree drinking angle is strongly advised to achieve the ideal tea-to-cheese ratio.