Tea has always been part of my family. My mother and grandmother served tea, and I’ve loved “taking tea” since I was little. I was 15 when I got my first tea pot and cups.
About 15 years ago, I hosted a bridal shower and served tea. Based on positive responses from the people who were there, I started serving six-course themed teas, using my parents dining room.
After five years of doing that, I had accumulated a mailing list of 300. At that point, I decided to get my own location and turn a hobby into a full-fledged business.
At Lady Elegant’s we serve over 80 varieties of loose tea, which come from all over the world. We also offer three types of homemade scones, as well as soups and assorted desserts. Guests can choose a cream tea, dessert tea, three-course tea sampler or four-course parlor tea.
We have special themed teas throughout the year. In February, it was a Proper English Valentine’s Day Tea. This month, on Mar. 13, we’ll do a Luck o’ the Irish Tea. We also do children’s parties and events, which include instructions on pouring, serving and manners. And our Gift Shoppe is a place to purchase tea, pots, cups, cozies and other accessories.
Lady Elegant’s Tea Room
2230 Carter Ave.
I think people are becoming more knowledgeable about tea and more aware of its benefits. Besides health benefits, tea forces you to stop and relax. Taking tea is a chance for contemplation and conversation.
When I started looking for my own location, I wanted someplace with a homey atmosphere. The Milton Square building was perfect for that, and the surrounding neighborhood appealed to me as well. It’s a close-knit community where people watch out for each other.
I started serving tea 15 years ago, and I opened Lady Elegant’s Tea Room in Milton Square on May 1, 2003.
This is a family affair. My mother, Suzanne, does our bookkeeping and helps with recipes. My father, George, washes dishes and is our general handyman. My husband, Don, also helps out, and we have several other employees.
Besides running Lady Elegant’s, I work part-time at a law office. I’m still learning about tea, so a lot of my leisure reading is on that subject. I also enjoy hiking, biking, baking and scrapbooking.