Ten years in the Hong Kong F&B landscape is a long time, particularly on a scene that is characterised by its ephemerality and frequently changing tides. It is perhaps why a closure such as Teakha’s—which has been firmly planted in the collective memories of Hongkongers who have grown to love what it offers and represents—is ever more saddening. Founder Nana Chan announced today (28 October) that after a decade in the business, Teakha would be closing its doors on 31 December 2021.
Until then, the team will be going out with a bang by channeling their efforts into a full-on programme of weekend activities that will last for their final two months of service. These include calligraphy workshops, tea leaf card readings, cityscape sketch sessions, “Walk With Teakha” tours around the neighbourhood, as well as dance and jazz performances. Staying true to their commitment to providing an inclusive community space, the team have rallied the efforts of supporters and friends including artist Maoshan Connie, who will be hosting a few sketching sessions, to musicians The Wong Way Down, who will bring the Po Hing Fong neighbourhood to life with their energetic jazz performances.
Since opening in 2012, Teakha has been a complete antithesis to the typical city experience: located on a quiet cul-de-sac in Po Hing Fong (which, notably, was not as trendy as it is today), the tea shop and cafe has pursued and championed a slower way of living, offering an oasis of calm and an assortment of carefully crafted brews and sweets.
Entering Teakha, even on its busiest days, comes with a sense of warmth—not only from the perpetual scent of masala spices lingering in the air, but the feeling that this had become more than just a place to eat and drink. Over the past decade, Teakha has been a spot for solace as well as a community focal point, hosting pet adoption days, performances, workshops and markets—in Chan’s words, the space was designed to foster the “lost art of talking to our neighbours”. One of those neighbours—the nearby Yuan Heng spice shop on Tung Street, has provided Chan with all the spices (cardamom, cinnamon, pepper and star anise) that goes into the signature Teakha masala chai, the recipe for which she learned while trekking through India and Nepal in 2011.