Matcha Lattes at Chalait
I love a good coffee date, but when my friend Lourdes at Please, Do Tell invited me out for matcha lattes at Chalait, I was quite intrigued. Matcha is the concentrated, finely ground powder of green tea. Coffee lattes are already divine, so why ruin a good thing? Matcha has a plethora of health benefits: it’s high in antioxidants, boosts the metabolism and burns calories, enhances mood, aids in digestion, lowers cholesterol and blood sugar levels, is rich in fiber, and has the nutrients equivalent to ten cups of green tea. So on the coldest morning this winter, I met Lourdes at Chalait.
Chalait is a small, neighborhood cafe in the West Village that serves matcha drinks, specialty coffee, and small bites. I walked in and immediately fell in love with the space. It’s clean, minimalist in design, and pouring with natural sunlight. As I mentioned, it’s small. There’s only room for about 15 people to sit comfortably. It’s a stay, but don’t overstay your welcome, kind of place.
While Chalait offers a variety of matcha beverages like its coffee brethren (american, cortado, etc), I couldn’t resist the matcha latte made with almond milk. It was exactly what I craved – a caffeine beverage that actually tasted like it was good for me. If you add sugar to your coffee, expect to do the same with your matcha drink. It’s just as bitter, but also earthy in taste.
When it comes to food, Chalait offers just enough options because everything on the menu looks good. I had the avocado toast on a thick slice multi-grain bread. While it’s on the “bites” menu, it’s a substantial bite which warrants the $10 price tag. Not everything on the menu is “clean” but the menu is mostly healthy, minus your usual cafe pastries and specialty Nutella toast. I did not have the Nutella toast, but I plan on going back on a cheat day.
My theory about eating out is that the experience should be fun, the food should be pretty, and you should only eat foods that you can’t/don’t make at home. Chalait hits all three on my checklist. The only reason I’m not there every day is because it’s on the opposite end of town. Oh well, just another to set more matcha dates with friends.