Michael and I had a Tea Master Tuesday while swinging through Brisbane. It's the one day that sentimental fave Kuan-Yin is closed, and we can't help but compare the two venues. With their mock meat lunches, bubble teas and Wickham St addresses, they have an awful lot in common. Tea Master's just as good at a well-marked majority-vegan menu, and probably pips Kuan-Yin for non-mock options and its list of gluten-free dishes up at the counter.
After ordering rice plates on our first visit, we thought it time to test Tea Master's bento boxes. At $12.80 they're a smidge more expensive and a little more casually presented than Kuan-Yin's version. White rice is served loosely, the mixed veges are cooked together in a salty broth with a little sesame oil and the light pickle is bean sprouts. There's fruit to finish, but there's also (1) a cup of tea, and (2) pudding! Michael and I were served green tea jelly and coconut jelly, respectively, and seemingly at random.
As for the mock meat feature, I gave roasted eel a shot. It was like a denser, flatter mock chicken with a stripe of nori and crispy skin.
Michael's roasted duck was looser, sweeter and fattier. We both loved it!
The cup of tea and coconut jelly accompanying the meal set rendered my bubble tea (kiwi green with rainbow jelly) fairly redundant. The tea was a typically sweet sugar syrup and the jelly only weakly flavoured - no match for Kuan-Yin's counterparts.
For our purposes Tea Master plays second fiddle to Kuan-Yin, but really it's just disadvantaged by that proximity. I suspect that if I had Tea Master in my neighbourhood it'd be a favourite lunchtime hangout.
You can read about our first visit to Tea Master here. Since then it has received positive write-ups on Soy Bien and Live Blissful.
Shop 18, 115 Wickham St, Cathedral Village, Fortitude Valley
(07) 3257 0038
veg dishes $1.10-16.80
Accessibility: There is a ramp available for accessing this strip of cafes. Indoor and outdoor seating are both reasonably spaced. We ordered and paid at a high counter. We didn't see toilet access, and suspect there are shared ones for this retail area outside the restaurant.