Thai iced tea and sugar cane juice are just a few of the many refreshing drinks you can slurp in Thailand. Anchan is another traditional Thai beverage you’ll want to get familiar with. Anchan (which is also known as sweet butterfly pea flower tea) is often served as a typical Thai welcome drink. Throughout Southeast Asia anchan has been used to color everything from drinks to food Smurf blue for generations.
The first thing that crossed my mind when I saw the Care Bear worthy drink at KrungThep was that while it might be beautiful, it probably wouldn’t tantalize my taste buds. The best thing about anchan is it tastes as amazing as it looks.
I snagged my honey lemon anchan at KrungThep Tea Time in Winter Park. (KrungThep by the way is the Thai name for Bangkok, Thailand’s capital.) The anchan was mellow and had the perfect amount of sweetness. The lemon zest at the bottom of my glass not only looked pretty, it gave the tea the perfect amount of zing.
KrungThep’s teas are served hot or iced. Be patient since all of KrungThep’s teas are steeped to optimize each brew’s flavor. (This means that if you order more than one drink, they may not all hit your table at the same time.) If you go the iced tea route, your drink will arrive in a generously sized glass mug, so come thirsty. There are over 20 different teas you can choose from and they have dreamy names like blueberry cheesecake and caramelized pear.
If you’re hoping for a tie dye experience, you’ll want to select an anchan drink since the other teas are uniform in color. In addition to the extensive tea list, there are also unique drinks you’ll be hard pressed to find in the states like cha ma now (which is half lemonade, half dark Thai iced tea). Nearly a dozen sandwiches and an assortment of “naked sandwiches” (aka salads) round out the menu.
My honey lemon anchan was the first color changing tea I’ve ever tasted, but it won’t be my last. Given anchan’s unique flavor and its rainbow appeal, we’re hoping this brew goes mainstream.