11 Nov Please The Palate Pick of the Week: Percolate Tea
Coffee shops are everywhere. In addition to the chain stores of Starbucks, Coffee Bean and Peet’s that can be found on almost every corner, local coffee roasters and independent shops can also be found. But what about tea? Of course these places all serve tea, meaning they hand you a cup of super hot water and a tea bag that you will probably oversoak. A few will use loose-leaf teas and there are a few tea-centric spots around Los Angeles. I just happened across the newest one that opened on November 1st and Percolate is the Please The Palate pick of the week.
I was dropping off my dry cleaning in a strip mall near my house. I had not had my morning cappuccino as I was out of milk and had not gone to the market yet. There had been an okay coffee shop in the same strip mall but they had barely lasted one year. I figured I would have to stop at a nearby chain store to get my fix as I went along on other errands. But as I parked my car, I noticed people coming out of the old coffee shop with coffee cups in hand. I looked closer and saw the sign Percolate, which I figured was a good sign!
To percolate is to “filter gradually through a porous surface or substance.” Quite an apropos name for this new tea (and coffee) shop.
After water, tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world. Jeremy, the owner of Percolate, fell in love with tea on his travels to Japan and London while working for a global software company. But when he would return home, he found a lack of quality tea like he found abroad. With the knowledge he had gained in his travels, he began selling tea at the local farmer’s market and now opened Percolate.
Percolate offers premium loose leaf tea served iced, hot or with homemade boba. According to Jeremy, there are four key elements to good tea:
The Source: Percolate offers 26 different teas from around the world. There are black teas, green teas from Japan, white teas, oolong teas, rooibos teas and herbal teas made with local ingredients.
Storage: The loose leaf teas are stored in UV protected canisters which allow no light to get in.
Water: Because LA water is rough, it clashes with tea. Percolate uses a filtration system.
Temperature and Timing: Percolate offers three different water temperatures. Each temperature (175 degrees,195 degrees and 204 degrees) depends on the specific tea. For example, green tea is delicate and therefore needs a cooler temperature and less steeping time whereas a black tea, which is fully oxidized, can be steeped for longer at a higher temperature.
Each tea is steeped in a vessel that allows the water to pass through the entire leaf, extracting the good stuff such as flavor, aroma and antioxidants. The finished teas express their unique flavors and beautiful aromas and are elegant and smooth.
I loved the yuzu green tea that was served at the perfect drinkable temperature and was not tannic.
The iced teas are cold brewed overnight and the cold teas I tasted are the best I have ever had! I tried jasmine flower green tea, peppermint leaf herbal tea and peach oolong tea.
In addition, Percolate has pour-over coffee and espresso drinks used beans from a local roaster. And, locally-produced baked goods are available, including gluten-free and vegan options.
Percolate has a bright, open feel with white counters and white walls with the brand’s bubbles brightly painted on top. Once you have “percolated” over the type of tea you want to order, you can order at the counter or use the self-order kiosks.
Percolate has a delicious selection of teas and is going to make more Los Angelenos tea drinkers…..and that is why it is the Please The Palate pick of the week.
11870 Santa Monica Blvd Ste 111
Los Angeles, CA 90025