Affordable cold brew tea and coffee are no longer a thing of the future, thanks to Black And Gold Coffee Stop at Hong Lim Food Centre! The humble stall serves up drinks as cheap at $1.50, and the most expensive at $3.50 — which is still pretty cheap, compared to other cafes out there.
The stall owner is a kind-faced 30-something lady. After quitting her job as an engineer, she took a break for close to a year and decided to start this shop.
Her passion for affordably priced floral tea and speciality coffee was evident from the time she took to personally explain how the different types of drinks are made.
The menu might be small, but it speaks volumes to the dedication put behind each and every cup that is served to the customer. The owner shared that the teas are brewed in a new batch every day, and it is essential to let the teas rest overnight so as to extract the flavours fully. Thus, there are only limited quantities for the teas every day.
At the counter, there are different flower samples in small jars, labelled to each drink that is available for the day. You can open the jar and smell the concoction of each floral tea before purchasing the cold brew itself.
The owner offers free samples of the teas as well, which was actually how my friend and I took an interest in this stall — after sampling a cup of their cold brew tea, I was immediately sold.
We bought a total of three cold brew floral teas to try, as well as a cold brew coffee and a hot latte.
Our first drink was Youthful Always ($2). To be honest, I was taken in by the name, and I imagined it to be a hit amongst ladies. Made with hibiscus, rosehips and rooibos tea, this drink was slightly tart.
Note that the sugar syrup would be provided at the side, so you can customise the preference of the tea’s sweetness — I would recommend trying the tea first, sans the sugar syrup, then add it in after. I found that adding about half a serving of the sugar syrup brought out the natural flavours of the floral teas.
The Mint Smoother ($2) was a very pleasant drink and soothing to the throat. Made with chamomile, lavender and peppermint tea, this drink would be perfect for a scorching day out.
In addition, the chamomile and lavender added an element of relaxation, and it almost felt as if this drink would put me to sleep.
Our next drink was the Berry Berry ($2). I’m a huge fan of berries, so this tea was one of my favourites, with it strong fruity flavours. Consisting of dried currants, raisins, hibiscus and elderberries, this drink is made with 100% real ingredients and no artificial colours.
After adding some sugar to this, I enjoyed the tea much more. So, don’t be afraid to add some sugar to your tea to bring out its natural flavours.
The Coffee Rose ($3) was an interesting drink. Organic rose buds are added into fresh cold brew coffee, thus elevating the coffee with slight hints of rose notes, almost acting as a natural sweetener.
For people who might get bored of the usual cold brew, you must try the Coffee Rose. And if you’re looking for a hot beverage, we had a Hot Latte ($3), which was a decent cup of coffee that was not too acidic.
If you’re working near Chinatown, support this humble stall as they continue making affordable and well-made cups of coffee and tea. I know I definitely would come back for more whenever I’m in the vicinity.
Expected Damage: $1.50 – $3.50 per pax