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Tea room offers unique experience |

Tea room offers unique experience

The First Lady Tea Room, 300 N. Cedar brings a culinary experience to its guests, as opposed to a restaurant where you order a meal and expect to leave with a full belly or take-out box.

Sara Talbert moved to Abilene in May from Colorado where she had followed her dream and owned several American-fare restaurants, having opened her first one about 35 years ago.

“The interest is just in the satisfaction you get when you present a really good product to people and you provide a service that they enjoy,” she said.

As time went on her idea of what she wanted to do shifted when she came across a tearoom in Broomfield, Colo., which was tucked away in an antique shop.

She fell in love with the idea of a tearoom, and began to visit a few others in the area.

“I thought, what a great concept. She was open only by reservations so she knew exactly who was coming in and who to cook for,” she said. “And I thought after having three full-blown restaurants and bars – this will literally be a tea party.”

She also looked at how changes in her life were progressing and realized it was time to put the restaurant/bar businesses behind her.

“When you’re a child you play with toys, when you are in your early 20s you have bars and restaurants. And when you’re in your 60s you do a nice quiet tearoom.” she said.  

She anticipated Abilene, with its charm and elegance, would be a perfect location.

“There are lots of tourists, lots of sorority groups, lots of Red Hat groups – women looking for special places to meet with a friend,” she said.

Since opening on June 1, she learned her instinct was right. Her guests, as evident by the number of five-star reviews on the First Lady Tea Room Facebook page, are enjoying the experience of a tearoom.

The four-course culinary experience starts with a fruit kabob, and a fresh scone with Devonshire cream. This is followed by a seasonal salad, and then a choice of three tea sandwiches served on a three-tiered platter with a brief explanation of each one.

Each course is served on an eclectic collection of fine dinnerware, which adds to the elegance of the room.

Following the tea sandwiches, a serving of sorbet will cleanse the palate before the tea deserts are brought to the table. Throughout the experience there is a selection of teas to choose from and it ends with a hand-dipped strawberry.

Talbert explained there is no menu, but if someone has dietary concerns to let her know when they call for reservations.

“Other than that, they come in and they are just willing to be surprised and thrilled. They are having a tea experience,” she said. “They’re really not just coming in and ordering off a menu and having a meal. It truly is just this – you sit down and you’re waited on. It’s a quiet environment, there’s no TVs blaring and you just get all these wonderful little sandwiches and deserts.”

First Lady

Tea Room

Location: 300 N. Cedar

Hours: By reservation only

Cost: $20 per person

Reservations: Reservations are required 24 hours for groups of 10 or fewer; 48 hours for more than 10

Occupancy: 32


Phone: (785) 307-5309.

Category: Dinnerware  Tags: ,  Comments off
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