Food Review: Tea Capital in SOMA

I have heard great things about a new tea shop with some amazing bahn mi sandwiches in SOMA, next to The Bagel Shop and across from The Root. So, once a had a couple free hours, I headed that way for an 11:00 lunch on a Tuesday. It was the best dining experience I have had in a LONG time. It was incredible. Here are the details.

As they opened at 11:00, I was the only customer and ordered at the counter and took a seat at a table, which are plentiful. The space is open and airy, but very modern and cute with lots of different seating offerings: booths, couch, comfy chairs, and regular tables.

The menu is on a tv screen at the ordering counter and doesn’t offer many food options, which is usually a good sign that what they do serve will be perfection.

Food includes a chicken or pork banh mi, popcorn chicken, and some desserts such as mango yogurt cake, mango sticky rice, baklava, tea cake, and a strawberry tres leches cake. There are plenty of different tea/drink options, however. There’s coffee (ex: fresh and cold brews, vietnamese, shaken espresso), hot specialty drinks (ex: hot nutella cheesecake, biscoff milk tea, signature chai), fresh iced drinks (ex: agua fresca, fruit tea, lemonade, Italian soda), and a ton of different boba tea drinks (ex: Dirty creme brulee, tiramisu, matcha red bean, taro, strawberry shortcake, etc).

I started with the house signature chai for $7. I ordered it hot even though it also comes iced. I was blown away from everything about this! It came out in a huge tea pot, with a very large mug and some sweet and savory crackers. The crackers were each uniquely flavored and were such a great addition to the BEST chai tea I have ever had. It is a made-from-scratch tea with ginger, cardamom and other spices and you choose between masala and lemongrass. I got the lemongrass and it was so flavorful, not too sweet, and just absolutely delicious. I finished one large mug and got a large to go cup for the rest to take home. I can NOT believe that all this, at least two large drinks and snacks, only runs $7. Take that, Starbucks, 7Brew, etc!

For lunch, I ordered the pork banh mi. I don’t even know how to describe how blissfully happy I was eating this sandwich. It really is a perfect banh mi. The delicious crusty, yet soft bread was packed full of perfectly cooked, flavorful pork, plenty of pickled veggies, cucumber, mayo, and cilantro. Though it already came in a to-go container, I had errands to run and it wouldn’t last in my car, so I had to eat it all. I swear I haven’t been that full since last Thanksgiving. And this large sandwich only ran me $10, which could easily be split. I cannot wait to try the chicken version, which I have heard raving reviews about!

With all of the amazing things I tried here, and they were all home runs, the best part was talking to one of the owners. Her and her sister own the shop and she made everything herself from scratch. (I must mention that this place is not fast; perfection takes time. So, don’t come here if you only have a 30 min lunch, you’ll spend at least an hour here. So, take your time and enjoy!) She was absolutely so friendly and sweet and made sure I had everything I wanted and that everything was up to my standards. Ha! Honey, you blew this meal out of the water! Everything about this trip to Tea Capital was perfect for me. I want to eat here at least weekly from now on. So, if you haven’t tried this place, run! And let me know if there’s a particular drink or other food item you suggest I try next time, because I can’t imagine not getting the exact same order every. single. time.

Review: Scooter’s Coffee in Maumelle

Maumelle, or technically outside of it on Hwy 365 towards Morgan, has had its first Scooter’s Coffee for a couple weeks now! After getting a couple coupons in the mail, I decided to try it and I was not disappointed, not even a tiny bit.

Scooter’s is kind of big deal making its debut around Central Arkansas. There is even another one being built currently on Maumelle Boulevard on the other side of “town”. This Nebraska chain totes they only use coffee from the top 10% of special coffee beans in the world. Their menu of drinks is vast and, unlike 7 Brew, they have food, too!

While the menu has everything from your normal coffee shop regulars, it also has smoothies, teas, and even drinks and food for the kids. I decided to stick to what I would normally get from any coffee shop, though the fall specials like the Caramelicious coffee were very tempting.
I stuck with a medium hot skinny vanilla latte and a large iced chai tea latte. With my coupon for one drink half off, my total was just under $9. So, they aren’t cheap, but what is these days?

Both drinks were delicious! I don’t think they could have been any better, honestly. The chai tea was so flavorful, all the way down to the last drop. The spices in this tea are perfect, in my opinion. I’ll always order this!
The skinny vanilla latte was one of the best I’ve had. I do think both of these drinks tasted better than 7 Brew’s versions, so I may stick to Scooter’s from here on out when I need a special coffee treat.

I did not order any food, but have heard good things. If you’ve tried any of the food, please let me know what you thought in the comments so I can plan my next visit.

Overall, the service was fast and super friendly and the coffee and tea were absolutely delicious. I’m so glad to have Scooter’s in Maumelle!