Destination Tea: Vineyard Cafe

Where:  Historic Marietta Square, GA
Style:  Southern Cafe
Tea Selection:  35+ loose leaf teas
Teatimes:  Sunday-Thursday 11-3; Friday-Saturday 11-4
Reservations:  Walk-ins welcome; 24-hour notice for 6 or more guests; Advance reservation for private parties
Contact:  678-581-3771
Cost:  $17.95 Full Tea; $8.95 Dessert Tea – sample menu
Destination Tea Tips:  Look up! Enter via the (separately owned) Tiny Bubbles Tea Bar and Gift Shop and walk to the back of the gift shop to find the stairs to Vineyard Cafe. Request a window seat when you reserve to get the full effect of tea on the square. If parking on the square is full, head to the free public lot on Mill Street between the tracks and North Marietta Parkway, and it’s a short jaunt to Vineyard Cafe. Join their VIP Text Club at 51660 for 10% off purchase.

Vineyard Cafe exterior

Destination Tea Notes:  Having recently come under the ownership of hostess Penny Brand, Vineyard Cafe offers homemade lunch fare with healthy leanings. Though truly, while you are perched in their second floor dining rooms overlooking historic Marietta Square, how can you not complete the picture by enjoying the tradition of afternoon tea? Because they bake onsite, if you are with two or three friends strolling through the square, you can pop in on a whim for your afternoon tea without reservations, or if you are tempted (and voracious), choose to augment your tea with items from their lunch menu. You may also reserve Vineyard Cafe dining rooms during and after business hours for private parties or catch a local production at their new dinner theater.

Request a window seat when you reserve to sip your tea overlooking the square.
A beautiful day for tea on the square

Tea Service

Your server lets you know how long to let your tea steep before you press, and will replenish your hot water for a second serving. If your French press lets some leaves into the cups, wait a moment for them to fall to the bottom, then enjoy!
Your server lets you know how long to let your tea steep before you press, and will replenish your hot water for a second serving. If your French press lets some leaves into your cup, wait a moment for them to fall to the bottom, then enjoy!
Each guest may choose one tea from the list of loose leaf teas. The fitting Southern Pecan was a delight.
Each guest may choose one tea from the list of loose leaf teas. The fitting Southern Pecan black tea is naturally-flavored and fabulous all at once.

Scones & Spreads, Savories and Sweets

A generous sampling of fresh fruit is accompanied by an optional add-on of homemade soup, which changes seasonally. The flavorful broccoli cheese soup was neither overly salty nor too heavy.
An assortment of fresh fruit is accompanied by an optional add-on of homemade soup, which changes seasonally. The flavorful broccoli cheese soup was neither overly salty nor too heavy.
Each guest receives a half Classic Harvest sandwich -- a delicious turkey club served on walnut raisin bread -- as well as a standout chicken salad croissant.
Each guest receives a half Classic Harvest sandwich — a delicious turkey club served on walnut raisin bread — as well as Vineyard Cafe’s standout chicken salad croissant.
House baked scones and sweets share a plate. Vineyard Cafe's secret recipe honey cream spread perfectly complemented their just-right scones in cranberry-orange, blueberry and cinnamon (our favorite) . Dessert included a cream puff and two homemade cookies that were a nice blend of soft, chewy and sweet. We agreed the cherry almond cupcake earned our top dessert vote.
House baked scones and sweets share a plate. Vineyard Cafe’s secret recipe honey cream spread perfectly complemented their just-right scones in cranberry-orange, blueberry and cinnamon (our favorite) . Dessert included a cream puff and two homemade cookies that were a nice blend of soft, chewy and sweet. We agreed the cherry almond cupcake earned our vote for the afternoon’s top dessert.
Mother-daughter teas are often held in this lovely secret space apart from the two main dining rooms, where dress-up accoutrements await
Mother-daughter teas are often held in this lovely secret space opposite the two main dining rooms, where dress-up accoutrements await.

Destination Tea: ZenTea Tea Room

Where:  Chamblee, GA
Style:  Asian/Modern
Tea Selection:  150+ loose leaf teas
Teatimes:  High Tea – Daily 11:30-2:30; Mediterranean or Cream Tea Mon-Sat 11-5, Sun 11-4
Reservations:  24-hour notice for High Tea; Walk-ins welcome for Cream or Mediterranean Teas
Contact:  678-547-0877
Cost:  $29 Gluten-Free High Tea; $24 High Tea; $19 Mediterranean Tea; $15 Cream Tea
Destination Tea Tip:  ZenTea has limited seating in the front of the store, but plenty of tables in the back room. After perusing their uber-long tea menu, you may want to come in for a tea tasting to better acquaint yourself with your choices.

ZenTea ExteriorDestination Tea Notes:  Hostess Connie Miller began sourcing and bagging her own line of teas more than ten years ago and her dedication to offering quality, naturally-flavored and organic teas shines at her tea room. ZenTea’s extensive tea selection is the true star of afternoon tea here, and your hosts are gracious and so well versed in the tea choices that finding a tea you’ll love is a snap. Happily, we were each treated to two pots of tea, sampling each other’s choice and receiving our second pots right before dessert was served. Outside of afternoon tea, there are many ways to explore the wonders of ZenTea’s tea menu, including tea spritzers, sample teas of the day, taking your tea hot or iced, matcha lattes (yum) or sidling up to the bar for a reserved tea tasting. While the front cafe with its free Wi-Fi becomes the “remote office” for some regulars and a bright spot for friends to gather, the peaceful loveliness of the meditation room at back provides a soothing backdrop for your afternoon tea conversation or private party.

Our high tea table in the back meditation room
Our high tea table in the back meditation room
Meditation Room ZenTea
Pretty window seat

Tea Service

Cups are contemporary and pots range from traditional to Japanese cast iron
Cups are contemporary and pots range from traditional to Japanese cast iron

Scones & Spreads, Savories and Sweets

Scones of blueberry and cranberry are served with clotted cream, lemon curd and preserves
Scones of blueberry and cranberry are served with clotted cream, lemon curd and preserves
Sandwiches are pimiento cheese on wheat and chicken salad croissant
Sandwiches are pimiento cheese on wheat and chicken salad croissant
Made just down the street by Maison Robert, the spinach quiche was buttery and perfectly portioned
Made just down the street by Maison Robert, the spinach quiche was buttery and perfectly portioned
Though we were full, the dessert plate was too tempting: our favorite was the homemade coconut cake, nestled amongst a homemade lemon cookie, caramel cake, raspberry sorbet with florentine and chocolate petit four.
Though we were full, the dessert plate was too tempting: our favorite was the homemade coconut cake, nestled amongst a homemade lemon cookie, caramel cake, raspberry sorbet with florentine and chocolate petit four.
A tea wonderland, including all varieties, organic choices, loose leaf and bagged
A tea wonderland, including all varieties, organic choices, loose leaf and bagged, as well as pots, cups and steeping tools for your next tea at home

Destination Tea: Mittie’s Cafe on Main

Where:  Alpharetta, GA
Style:  Southern
Tea Selection:  2 dozen bagged teas
Teatimes:  Monday-Sunday 8-3; After hours for large private parties
Reservations:  48-hour notice; 7-day notice for large parties
Contact:  770-772-0850
Cost:  $23 – $20 High Tea; $16 Light Tea; $15 Breakfast Tea; $10 Children’s High Tea – peruse menus here
Destination Tea Tip:  Follow Destination Tea on Facebook to learn about Mittie’s upcoming special discounts.

Mittie's on Main Cafe Exterior

Destination Tea Notes:  Mittie’s is a local café that serves a variety of tea menus alongside its breakfast and lunch menus. In the Southern style, their homemade foods are rich and generously portioned. High Tea here differs slightly from a traditional afternoon tea in that the meal service follows the tempo of a luncheon and that the boxed tea selection is served DIY-style with a hot pot of water. While we were at tea, Mittie’s relaxed atmosphere set the stage for many groups of friends, co-workers and new moms with infants in tow to chat over lunch.

Our high tea table awaits us
Our high tea table awaits us

Tea Service

A selection of bagged teas is brought to the table with a pot of hot water.
A selection of bagged teas is brought to the table with a pot of hot water

Scones & Spreads, Savories and Sweets

For $3, you may add a soup to your High Tea. The lobster bisque is popular with guests.
For $3, you may add a soup to your High Tea. The lobster bisque is popular with guests.
2016-03 MittiesIMG_6867
The afternoon tea menu is served in courses. After the soup follows the fresh fruit cup nestled into a generous helping of savories, including: Quiche du Jour, Cherry Bleu Chicken Phyllo, Cucumber Canapé, Carrot Tea Muffin (we enjoyed that it wasn’t overly sweet), Dave’s Pinwheel Slice and Ms. Emily’s Chicken Salad Croissant.
In keeping with the definition of "high tea," Mittie's offers an ample menu so filling you may have to save some for later!
In keeping with the definition of “high tea,” Mittie’s offers an ample menu so filling you may have to save some for later!
The scone is served with a sweet whipped cream, as well as your choice of two desserts from a platter of assorted macarons, mini cheesecakes and brownies.
The scone is served with a sweet whipped cream, as well as your choice of two desserts from a platter of assorted macarons, mini cheesecakes and brownies.
Scones, cookies and donuts for sale
Homemade scones, cookies and donuts for sale
A back patio offers a breezy atmosphere for tea
A back patio offers a breezy atmosphere for tea