- < $10
9 Raffles Place, #01-22
Tel: +65 6538 1837
TWG Tea Salon & Boutique at ION Orchard
2 Orchard Turn #02-21
Tel: +65 6735 1837
TWG Tea on the Bridge at Marina Bay Sands
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
2 Bayfront Avenue, B2--89/89A
Tel: + 65 6535 1837
TWG Tea Garden at Marina Bay Sands
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
2 Bayfront Avenue, B2-65/68A
Tel: + 65 6636 8663
TWG Tea Salon & Boutique at Takashimaya
Takashimaya Department Store
391 Orchard Road, Level 2
Tel: +65 6363 1837
TWG Tea Boutique at Takashimaya
Takashimaya Department Store
391 Orchard Road, Basement 2
Tel: +65 6842 1837
TWG Tea, which stands for The Wellness Group, is a luxury concept that incorporates an international distribution network to professionals, unique and original retail outlets and exquisite tea rooms. A veritable tea institution, TWG Tea is passionate about sharing their expertise and has become a point of reference for tea lovers thirsty for knowledge.
TWG Tea’s macarons are infused with tea, which sets them apart from most of its competitors in Singapore. This also sets you up for a unique taste experience, and ensures that their macarons are never too sweet for anyone’s liking. With that being said, the macaron fillings are still sugary enough to satisfy a sweet tooth like mine. Flavours that I never fail to get during my visits are the Lemon Bush Tea and Black Tea & Blackcurrant, which deliver supremely in the sweet department.
Priced at $2 per macaron and never scrimping on its size, TWG Tea’s macarons are worth the splurge! Treat yourself today, or get a $12 box of six for a friend - he will be grateful.
I won't deny that you can get a better deal else where, but the experience TWG offers is one of a kind. Upon arrival, you get to study their plethora of tea selections (something which I personally find therapeutic) and you can get recommendations from their staff.
I however find the service lackluster, which is something I hope will improve because in such a lovely place, I'm sure everyone expects service to be nothing short of impeccable.
The ambience makes up for that though, wonderful place, especially if you manage to get a place on the bridge over the canal. You could almost fantasize you're in Venice!
Their scones are of one of the best I've tried locally. But the true hero is the clotted cream and tea jelly that are served alongside. The cream is light, yet mysteriously full of milky flavour, and I usually find myself having difficulty rationing cream to scone ratio and it always runs out fast :(
Macarons are well, rather decent, but I don't see myself purchasing in future since there are tastier alternatives.
Their ice cream is amaaazing! Flavours are aplenty, and all of them have such strong flavours they linger on the tongue. Each flavour is unique and delicious, you just have to try them out for yourself!
To really indulge yourself in TWG, I suggest you head down during teatime (3pm to 6pm if I'm not wrong) and order yourself a lovely tea set. I chose the CHIC set: Imperial, and was give the fattest slab of foie gras ever. Two thumbs up and left me salivating for more.
Great for dates, and girly parties.
Apart from their enticing sugary treats, TWG's tea leaves have been one of the best quality tea I've had, and I'm comparing them with tea that I've bought from Japan and Beijing! I always go for my standard French Earl Grey, but they have a have a wide variety of choices ranging from Japanese Emperor Sencha for those who like a light drink after a heavy meal to help digestion, to Alfonso tea for those who enjoy the intoxicating aroma of berries in their drink.
If you're looking for a pleasant flavor to try, go ahead and choose the rose, it's my usual pick. If you're looking to explore, try the napoleon black tea! For simple chocolate lovers, they definitely cater to your taste buds as well!
They have lots of exotic flavours as well as fruity ones. But they don't try too hard - if they sell it, it's probably good. Nothing too weird for your taste buds!
Have the macarons.
The choice of plum tea in the set has taken last place in my ranking of TWG teas. I absolutely love their teas and even buy their english breakfast range teas to drink at home but this plum tea is a disappointment.
Their set dessert, Caramel napoleon tea infused with peanuts mousse cake was the hero of the meal. The cone shaped deesert with gold printed chocolate on top looked stunning and tasted fantastic. Although the chocolate mousse was not the best I have tasted, the combination of tea and salt caramel worked well.
I'm still going back to TWG but I would just stick to their scrambled eggs and bacon and my favourite royal english breakfast tea.
I first saw the name 'TWG Tea' when I visited ION Orchard. The place looked expensive. My first visit to TWG Tea, however, was in their Takashimaya B2 retail outlet, not in ION Orchard. That was when I learnt that although TWG teas are positioned as gourmet teas, many of them are meant for the ordinary man on the street. The secret is--don't dine in, do a takeaway!
At that time, TWG Tea had about 700 variety of teas. Today, I hear it has more than 1,000. For tea-lovers and especially those on a tight budget, many of their teas for takeaways are priced at less than $10 for 50g. Most of their teas are priced at less than $30 for 50g, which makes it affordable, although not cheap, for the man, or woman, on the street.
So, what is the meaning behind $30 for 50g of tea leaves? Assuming you use 2.5g tea leaves per tea-drinking session, you can have 20 sessions in total. This means 1 tea session costs you $1.50. Good quality tea leaves will provide you AT LEAST 3 solid steepings in a teapot, which gives you at most $0.50 per steeping. In a coffee-shop or hawker centre, a cup of Tea-O usually costs more than $0.50. This means you spend less paying $30 for 50g tea leaves in TWG Tea than a cup of Tea-O in a coffee-shop.
Most of the tea leaves don’t come packaged in containers. The staff will scoop up the tea leaves for you and put them in thick paper wrappers. The canisters are sold separately, and they are not cheap. Some of the TWG teas come packaged in 50g and 100g tea canisters. Some of the 100g tea canisters are wrapped in very beautifully decorated papers. If you buy these packaged teas, it is cheaper than buying the loose leaves and the canisters separately. The 100g packaged tea leaves in the decorated canisters are great for gifts. Another secret I can share is: do your sums. There are a very small handful of tea leaves that are cheaper when packaged in a tea canister than if you buy them loose with no canister. One is Darjeeling Nouveau: the tea canister with 100g tea leaves is priced at $56, compared to 50g loose tea leaves priced at $47. Another is Oud Night: the tea canister with 100g tea leaves costs $60, compared to 50g loose tea leaves priced at $36.
Now, for the most important section in this review: with more than 1,000 tea varieties in TWG, which tea should you drink? I have not tried ALL their teas, only a SMALL handful of what they have, and the following are my recommendations:
1) Oud Night – This is my favourite. The aroma and the taste of this black tea is heavenly. It is flavoured with gum arabic and with notes of rare calambac. The founders created this tea to celebrate Ramadan. Maybe this explains the heavenly feel I have in smelling and drinking this tea.
2) Silver Moon – This green tea was created to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival, and was one of the very first teas created by the founders. It is flavoured with berries and vanilla.
3) Red of Africa – This rooibos (African red herb) is the best of all rooibos I have tried in TWG Tea. It is blended with sweet spices and marigold. As rooibos contains no caffeine, it is a very good tisane to drink before sleep.
4) White House Tea – White tea blended with fruits and roses
5) Napoleon Tea – Black tea flavoured with sweet spices and vanilla
6) Hidden Pu-erh – Post-fermented tea blended with wild forest berries and flowers
7) Crème Brûlée Tea – Green tea flavoured with red fruits and strawberries
8) Crème Caramel Tea – Yes, by now you should have guessed I have a sweet tooth. This is rooibos flavoured with sweet French spices
9) Choco Mint Truffle Tea – Rooibos blended with vanilla, chocolate and mint. Chocolate lovers will adore this
10) Follow Me Tea – Green tea flavoured with pineapple and ginseng. Unique!
So far, all my recommendations are for blended teas. This is because TWG Tea’s niche is in their blended teas, not ‘pure’ teas, and certainly not Chinese teas. I’ve mentioned before, most of TWG teas are affordable, not cheap. Chinese tea merchants in Singapore are able to sell better quality Chinese and Taiwan teas at lower prices. You can also get very good quality Chinese, Taiwan and Darjeeling teas from reputable internet merchants at lower prices than TWG Tea.
Takashimaya members can take advantage of the 10% storewide sales (which occurs once every few months) to get a small discount off their TWG teas. However, do note that Takashimaya does not stock all the teas. What Takashimaya members can do is to buy what is available in Takashimaya first, then proceed to ION Orchard which is only 2 buildings away to get the rest of what they want. The ION Orchard outlet stocks all the TWG teas.
Oh, before I forget, one last secret: TWG Tea gives out free SAMPLES! Yes! Sometimes they volunteer, but you can also request. I usually request after I have purchased something from them. Free samples allow customers to try their teas before buying them, and their samples can last at least 3 separate sessions. Generous!
For the newbies who want to venture into the world of whole-leaf tea-drinking, I suggest you find out from the staff on how to brew the tea leaves first. You do not just pour boiling water into the tea leaves in the teapot! Make sure you find out the temperature and the steeping time for each type of tea as not all tea leaves are made the same.
With such delicious and irresistible teas, I have no choice but to be their very loyal customer!
If you think TWG is just about tea, then you are very wrong indeed. TWG has redefined tea drinking, making posh tea parties a now ubiquitous and convenient option for many. Walking past the open air establishment (you can get a pretty good view of the ION outlet at level 1 while going up the escalators), it is not difficult to see why TWG has attracted both tea and non tea drinkers alike. TWG is considered the pioneer of posh tea salons in Singapore. People come for the ambiance that is perhaps unrivaled at this point of time.
Of course, opulence comes with a price tag. One pot of tea of your choice is barely enough for a tea lover like myself, so sharing is not an option! The croque monsieur I had was delish, and I would definitely go back for more. I am not much of a dessert fan so I found the scones passable. The colourful array of macarons has not gone unnoticed even for those without a sweet tooth, but none of the flavours I tried left a deep impression enough for me to remember. Yes, I would go back to TWG, because 1) I am a tea lover and 2) I like sitting in pretty chairs.
Everything good comes with a price. The tea is not cheap. About ~$30 for a simple tea-time per person. The macaroons are about $2-3 each and to be dead honest they don't really taste good. It's a tea house for a reason....
Once in a while indulgence or you'll notice a huge hole in your pocket. Expensive but definitely worth the money!
Their macaroons come in quite a variety of interesting (tea) flavours that I don't think you can find elsewhere, and I am glad that they have none of the usual, boring flavours like pistachio and raspberry. Being the fan of mint- and citrus-flavoured sweets that I am, my personal favourite are their Moroccan Mint Tea and Lemon Bush Tea macaroons. What I love about mint desserts (the good ones) is the combination of sweetness and that refreshing, cooling, palate-cleansing effect. And TWG's mint macaroon doesn't disappoint at all. The Lemon Bush Tea was perfect for me as well -- fruity notes accompanied by the characteristic zing of citrus, which was strong enough by my standards.
Of course, not everyone loves toothpaste and sour stuff so, as a general recommendation, I would suggest trying their Napolean Tea and Caramel, and Black Tea and Blackcurrant. What these two and a few other macaroons have in common is a sweet filling sandwiched between tea-flavoured shells, and the flavour combo is quite interesting. Amidst the richness and sweetness of the caramel and blackcurrant filling, you get the bitter, earthy notes of tea.
I'm not sure what I'd recommend by way of (their super-fragrant) tea, but my personal favourite is (yep, you guessed it) their mint tea. A friend and fellow mint junkie bought home a box of their mint tea and we took turns sniffing at the box as though there were marijuana in it (though, technically speaking, mint is *our* marijuana). Goes to show just how fragrant their tea is, if you can even smell it through the packaging.
I would go to TWG for afternoon tea every week, if only I have the cash to spare.
This place offers variety of tea flavors raging from the popular silver moon to teas you might think existed only at Mars. Moreover, they have desserts too. They sell those mini pricey and tasty chocolates. My friend bought a few pieces and I can say it really tastes good. Not too sweet just nice for your taste buds.
Furthermore, TWG has a branch at ION Orchard. It really looks elegant and gives you the impression how the Queen of England sips her tea. However, I just think they should take it outdoors so that customers would not just enjoy their tea but also admire the environment.