Elchi Chai Shop is run by two sisters, Sayyeda and Sukaina Ebrahim, who want to share the authentic chai of their Gujarati heritage with Toronto. This cafe does traditional breakfasts and snacks from this culture with a modern twist.
They import their chai from Kenya. All teas are brewed in samovars behind the counter, consisting of the girls’ recipes of raw spices in boiling hot water.
Just as coffee terminology has been muddled with made-up words like Frappuccino or misleading terms like “venti” which actually means 20 in Italian and not “extra large Starbucks drink,” misconceptions surrounding chai have come up as it became more popular in the west.
Forget having to settle for those watered-down, sugary concoctions that chain cafés pass off as “chai tea". If you’re a fan of authentic chai, inspired by South-Asian flavours and steeping techniques, there’s a new place in Toronto that will cater to your cravings.
Elchi Chai shop is a family run business, co-owned by sisters Sayyeda and Sukaina Ebrahim. After years of research and hard work, the shop opened its doors to customers in May 2017.