This summer, we have another tea shop obsession—Happy Lemon! And where else will it open in Manila but in the heart of the tea-drinking Chinese Filipino population—Greenhills (in Promenade, to be exact).
Happy Lemon started in 2006 in Hong Kong and now has over 100 outlets all over Hong Kong, China, Singapore, and now, the Philippines. It was brought into the country by a Chinese-Filipino group who’s been friends since their grade school days in Xavier School (hmm, why am I not surprised?). The group is composed of Kelvin Gaisano, Kristine Gaisano, Andy See, Wesley Pardilla, and Edward Go and Chris Tiu, the famous basketball player and TV host. Read more about how they brought Happy Lemon to Manila here.
The Happy Lemon branch in Manila is actually not your usual tea shop. For one, it’s located in Promenade in Greenhills, which is a more commercial area and with higher foot traffic, and also the center of shopping and dining in San Juan. Compared to the other tea shops which I have already blogged about, I think Happy Lemon is the most conveniently located. Also, what sets Happy Lemon apart are their drinks with rock salt and cheese. Yes, you read that right. And yes, I’m sure you haven’t had this combination in any drink before, making Happy Lemon quite unique. I must say, if you don’t like it the first time you try it, you’ll soon grow a taste for it. And I know because A. and I have been going back for more.
Aside from the Rock Salt Cheese series, they also have a wide range of drinks such as the Lemon Series, Milk Tea, Mousse Spin (they have a Lemon Yakult drink), Blueberry, Cocoa & Coffee, Fresh Tea, and other specialty drinks. Since the first time we went to Happy Lemon in mid-April, we’ve gone back countless of times and tried out so many kinds of drinks already! Lucky for us, Greenhills is just near our houses 🙂 The price of each large drink averages from P85-P95. Better get the large size since the serving is not that big as other tea shops.
The first night we were there, there were so many people hanging out inside and outside Happy Lemon. And I noticed that the crowd which hanged out was considerably younger. And each time we went back, the place was consistently packed (especially in the afternoons and evenings) so much so that it now takes us more than 10-15 minutes to get our drinks. But they do have a friendly staff, and will gladly answer your questions on what drinks to order if you’re overwhelmed with the choices (and they always remind you how to properly drink the rock salt cheese drinks) 🙂
I think among all the tea shops I’ve tried out so far, Happy Lemon’s drinks have the most unique and discernible taste. Perhaps it’s because the tea flavor in their drinks are stronger and of course, their rock salt and cheese series is a must try, even just once! 🙂 Oh, and if you’re ordering the usual milk tea drink, be sure to get it in 100% sweetness as you practically won’t taste the sugar if it’s just at 50%. We love their Milk Tea with Pudding drink too 🙂
Happy Lemon is certainly a welcome addition to the tea shop scene in Manila. 🙂 And I’m looking out if these tea shops will give real competition to popular coffee establishments in the long run. Incidentally, Happy Lemon is s located right next to Starbucks Promenade and I must say, (well at least insofar as this branch is concerned), Happy Lemon is giving Starbucks a run for its money. And I love Happy Lemon’s slogan too 🙂 How can one go wrong with that? Cheers! 🙂