Chai is one of those rare drinks that might actually be more lifestyle than beverage. Sana Javeri Kadri, founder of Diaspora Co. in Oakland, told now-defunct alt-weekly SF Weekly in 2021 that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of variations on the spicy, cozy tea. For so many of the Bay’s caffeine heads looking for something a bit less potent than coffee, chai and chai lattes can be the perfect poultice. And while Damask Rose in Oakland and Vik’s Chaat in Berkeley ensure the East Bay stays up-to-snuff, the city also has plenty of fine fare, too.
There’s the new vanguard of pop-ups with Anand Upender from Just Some Folks experimenting with malt in his chai, and Justin Phanksom whipping up pots of chai throughout the Bay. Then there’s the old brass, such as the baristas at Philz Coffee who keep on whipping up buzzy beveragess as they have since 1978. No matter the destination, or the occasion, try these nine San Francisco chaiwalas for a sip of something special.
Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.Read More