New Harlem tea shop heals the community, customers say

Serengeti Teas and Spices offers hundreds of leafy blends, many from Africa.

Caranda Martin is happy to help customers with his soothing African teas at his new shop, Serengeti Teas and Spices.

Caranda Martin is happy to help customers with his soothing African teas at his new shop, Serengeti Teas and Spices.

Harlemites wouldn’t give up their new favorite shop for all the tea in Africa.

Serengeti Teas and Spices, which opened two weeks ago on Frederick Douglass  Blvd. near W. 123rd St., has not only become instantly popular — it’s also being  credited with curing the sick.

“This shop is great,” said Henry Mattox, 51, who claims a bubbling mix of  hibiscus and rooibos, a South African red leaf, reduced his 4-year-old son’s  103-degree fever in hours.

“It broke his fever,” Mattox said. “I know it was because of the tea. I’m a  believer in it.”

Harlem resident Henry Mattox says the tea cured his sick 4-year-old son, Jamel.

Harlem resident Henry Mattox says the tea cured his sick 4-year-old son, Jamel.

Shop owner Caranda Martin, a Liberian native, opened Serengeti Teas to offer  hundreds of blends, many from Africa, just to name a few.

Martin, whose grandmother was a botanist, credited the antioxidents in the  tea he sold Mattox for his son’s quick recovery.

“Herbs are good for your body,” said Martin, who formerly worked for Red  Rooster owner Marcus Samuelsson. “The teas have a nutritious factor. That is our  objective here.”

The shop is cozy with chairs, comfy ottomans and a long wooden table for  laptop tappers, a common laborer in many Manhattan neighborhoods.

Harlem native Christopher Pearson stopped by Sunday to enjoy an iced blood  orange tea, which comes from Sri Lanka.

“It’s never been nothing like this in Harlem,” he said. “It adds to what’s  going on in Harlem now. I like it.”

Serengeti Teas and Spices, 2292 Frederick Douglass Blvd. near W. 123rd  St., (212) 866-7100. For info, visit http://www.serengetiteasandspices.com.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/uptown/tea-africa-article-1.1472129#ixzz2goMhKjgb

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