The Mancunion

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The Art of Tea, Didsbury

Ella Westall recommends curling up for a few hours with coffee, cake, and old books at The Art of Tea


Tucked away down Barlow Moor Road, The Art of Tea is an arty-chic café/bar combined with the Didsbury Village Bookshop. On first impressions, the eclectic collection of chairs and tables and dark wood interior makes for a relaxed and creative mood, and the red sofas are perfect for curling up with a book. Their tea, coffee and cakes all come highly recommended, so you certainly wouldn’t go hungry or thirsty if you were to work here for a few hours!

At the back of the café a few steps lead down into a chaotic second-hand bookshop. Hundreds of Penguin Classics, and some lovely old leather bound editions are piled precariously on every available surface – not only on a maze of mismatched bookcases, but on boxes, chairs and floor-space. If you had the time to trawl through the thousands of volumes there are sure to be many hidden gems, but, as in most second-hand bookshops, finding anything in particular would be tricky.

On a quiet morning The Art of Tea would be a charming place to read or study. When I was there last week, however, most people were discussing their latest reads or socialising over a few drinks, so maybe leave the work behind and spend time with the books (or even some friends).