Explore Culinary Zen
Beer might be the brewed beverage that Oregon is most known for, but Oregonians also enjoy relaxing with a hot cup (or pot!) of brewed tea. Take the culinary Zen approach and explore Oregon’s many teahouses.
Townshend’s Tea Company started as a college project at the University of Oregon in 2002. Today, the concept of blending a “campus-style coffeehouse atmosphere” with top-grade, loose-leaf tea has come to life at Townshend’s Bend Teahouse and Alberta Street Teahouse in Portland. Their tea lists are long, and include a very eclectic selection of flavors, ranging from Mt. Hood Vanilla black tea to coconut oolong. Even if you know what you want to order, the menu is worth perusing just to see some of the names: Iron Goddess of Mercy or Dragon Eye Dong Ding, anyone?
Massages, salt water pools, saunas, steam rooms, and a bevy of teas to choose from—it doesn’t get more relaxing than Chozu Bath and Tea Gardens in Ashland. Chozu’s goal is personal wellness and total relaxation so why not make it a weekend of pure Zen and book one of the beautiful guest cottages. Sip away.
Lan Su Chinese Garden in the Old Town District of Portland offers an authentic Chinese teahouse experience. After you step inside this 40,000 square-foot garden oasis, walk along the mosaic stone path to the Teahouse in the Tower of Cosmic Reflections. Here, you have an ever-changing selection of categories and flavors, and the tea is always presented in classical style. Enjoy your selection while looking out over the beautiful, meticulously manicured garden that is based on 2,000 year-old Chinese traditions.
Editor’s Note: Planning on visiting Portland-area gardens? Check out Travel Portland’s Garden Pass and enjoy 30% off admission at the Lan Su Chinese Garden, the Pittock Mansion and the Portland Japanese Garden.