The tea shop as we’ve come to know it came over to Burma during a time of high migration (late 1920’s) from British India to Rangoon, when stalls known as “kaka hsaing” (tea shops) were beginning to appear everywhere. At that particular time in Rangoon’s history, the city was biggest migration port in the world and also housed one of the largest populations of Armenians and Jewish migrants in South East Asia.

During this time progressed, the “kaka hsaing” quickly transformed into “laphet yay hsaing” as they quickly got adopted into Burmese every day culture. The food seen in any particular teashop can range from predominantly Indian-inspired to Chinese, Burmese, Shan.

Tea shop culture in Myanmar is something that has binded the country together for the last hundred years. The tea, the food, the ambience; all of these different factors paint a picture of the history and complexity of all the people that have inhabited this country. Each tea shop is an institution that every Burmese person has a fond, nostalgic memory of. It was born during a time when Rangoon was considered one of the foremost cul- tural melting pots in the world, during the early 1900’s.

We opened Rangoon Tea House not only to pay homage to what existed, but also to continue the tradition of taking inspiration from all those who pass through our doors.