Chai is the Hindu word for tea.
Chai is the Hindu word for tea. Chai Tea Latte is an anglicisation of a national beverage that we have amended to suit our Western society. In the process, we have lost, destroyed, and forgotten its origins.
Traditionally, in India, they use a strong black tea like Assam, brew it with milk, and infuse it with herbs and spices. Over here, we squirt a shot of commercial liquid concentrate in a mug and pour milk on top, or we add a scoop of flavoured powder mix to hot milk.
The equivalent in coffee terms is either coffee syrup or instant coffee, both of which are almost acceptable for use in the home. If you're in a coffee shop though, and you're paying a few quid for your drink, you'd expect more effort, surely.
The traditional flavours range from cardamom, clove, ginger and chilli to cinnamon, liquorice, turmeric and rose. The highly-inventive UK concentrate producers possess the mind-blowing ingenuity to have added vanilla.
We don't sell Chai Tea Latte because, as coffee merchants, we don't have the requisite specialist knowledge to serve it in the traditional fashion. If you'd like to try a Chai Tea Latte made with syrup or powder, head to the chains. If you'd like a proper Chai, go to India, and if you'd like a cup of coffee, come to our place.