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Tchai Ovna: topnotch teahouse
Hidden in the depths of the West End is a teahouse (inspired by the cajovny in the Czech Republic) which offers over 80 kinds of teas from many different countries such as India, China, Japan, Nepal, Turkey, Russia, Vietnam and Iran.
If you're hungry, you can choose from a variety of vegetarian and vegan dishes, and sweet or savoury snacks from simple cheese and biscuits and cakes to turkish delight and baklava.
If smoking fruit tobacco appeals, you can hire a shisha (a North African tradition). If you're with friends there are various games you can play for free, or if you're alone there's a selection of books (or you can bring your own, to sit and relax).
In nice weather you can sit in the garden, but inside is more atmospheric, arranged in sections for groups of people (though when it's busy, you may need to share tables). My favourite bit is the Zen Room, a raised area at the back where you can stretch out on the cushions provided, or sit cross-legged.
There's often live music in the evenings, and since it's close to Glasgow University there are a lot of students (though the clientele is quite international). The only bad point is the slow service (everything is made to order)... but you don't want to come here when you're in a hurry anyway. This is a place to relax, unwind and savour.
Favorite Dish: The menu is constantly being updated, but recently I tried the yellow split pea casserole which was wonderfully tasty, and I ALWAYS have a portion of baklava, I love the stuff (good if you have a sweet tooth). I've eaten Thai Curry in the past, which I'd also recommend.
As for tea, I've tried many but a recent favourite is Yogi Yogi Chai. All the teas come with descriptions, so it's easy to pick one to suit your fancy.
- Food and Dining
Tchiovna: The Magic Tearooms
Tchiovna is a much-loved hangout of the more bohemian students and residents of Glasgow's West End. It is a teahouse modelled on the Czech idea of mixing as many different ecletic styles as possible to create ambience. As well as serving about 80 different teas from all over the world, it also has shish pipes to hire and healthy veggie food. I spend far too many hours and too much cash here, reliving my middle eastern travels...
Favorite Dish: Iranian Hel Tchi is a lovely black tea flavoured with middle eastern spices. It just reminds me of endless hours spent sitting outside carpet shops playing backgammon and smoking shish pipes.
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