What’s the tea on consumable flora in the Hudson Valley? Well, it’s mostly tea. With spring in full swing, we’re taking a deep dive into edible flowers in your locale.
When it comes to flowers, most people consider them pickable, admirable, even sniffable…but edible?
It turns out that if you’ve got a hankering for all things floral, you’re in luck. Some flora, such as nasturtium, borage, and tangerine gem marigold, are indeed safe to eat. There are foods we don’t typically associate with flowers which, given time, will beautifully bloom—arugula, for example, offers a blossom of four petals arranged in a cross shape, peppery in flavor if eaten.
The Hudson Valley Seed Co. offers an edible flower mix with 250 seeds for under $5. It’s a top pick if you’re dreaming of colorful, flower-adorned salads and sweets for later this summer.
Brewing tea is a more common way to consume flowers and, luckily, there are plenty of loose tea vendors in the Hudson Valley. We’ve compiled a list of the best spots to find a tea flavor for any palate.
North Chestnut Street, New Paltz
The Ridge is new—it opened in 2021—and yet it already offers a robust menu of teas and spices. It is owned by the sustainably-minded duo of Corinn Crawford and Chris Galeano. Patrons are encouraged to bring their own tea and spice containers as opposed to the usual disposable cup.
The shop offers a range of floral teas, including yellow chrysanthemum (pictured top left). The Ridge is known for its in-house concoctions, so if you’d prefer to pay the shop a visit with friends, give them a try. You can’t go wrong with the lavender earl grey Arnold Palmer, served over ice, or the jasmine and rose tea latte.
Main Street, White Plains
The menu at Hastings Tea & Coffee is solid, but what stands out most is the information on loose teas which is available on the website. The efflorescent herbal te de hibiscus tea, for example, is known to lower blood pressure and reduce high cholesterol. Each individual tea listing is befit with its own description of the flavor notes and health benefits.
Additionally, this shop offers a slew of signature drinks—wait until you lay eyes on the butterfly latte—along with coffee, espresso, and a light food menu. The outdoor seating area is perfect for a sunlit morning in Westchester.
Railroad Plaza, Millerton
If you are looking for quick and easy, Harney & Sons in Millerton sells a tea blend specifically for Mother’s Day. The blend is complete with rose petals, chamomile flowers, cornflowers, orange peel, and natural orange flavor. Plus, it’s earned a 4.8-star rating from reviewers online.
This location in Dutchess County has you covered with everything you’ll need to prepare hot and iced tea, but if you’re shopping last-minute, you can also find Harney products on Amazon.
Gleneida Avenue, Carmel
Next on our list is Florrie Kayes, where you may choose from over 95 varieties of loose tea, including caffeinated tea, decaffeinated tea, herbal tea, fruit tea, green tea, oolong tea, jasmine tea, and CBD tea.
In the spirit of keeping things floral, look to the Chinese flower blend—recommended, according to the menu, by Dr. Oz himself—and the dragon pearl jasmine tea.
The tearoom accommodates indoor and outdoor guests, and offers a decadent menu for lunch and brunch, along with a sweet selection of baked goods.
Western Avenue, Albany
With more than 130 loose teas, Short and Stout is a paradise for sippers in the Hudson Valley. Shop online under the “floral” category and find flavors like the white cab white tea, a wine-inspired blend including raspberry and jasmine flowers. Here again, shopping for individual tastes becomes manageable thanks to comprehensive descriptions of the tea blends.
The tea lounge located on Western Ave. offers tea-infused pastries and a seating area, and the staff is more than happy to help you determine the perfect loose tea for a gift (or just for yourself).
Water Street, New Paltz
If your idea of a Mother’s Day morning includes biking along the Rail Trail in New Paltz, take a pit stop at Mudd Puddle. You may have heard how good the coffee is, but did you know the hotspot also offers a menu of loose teas? The chamomile is hard to top.
Afterwards, take a gander around Water Street, where you’ll find multiple antique shops, a storefront for the work of artist Ryan Cronin, a wine bar, and more.