Destination Tea: White Heron Tea & Gifts

Where:  New Port Richey, Florida
Style: Traditional tearoom
Tea Selection:  12+ loose leaf teas from Driftwood Tea Company
Teatimes:  Wednesday to Saturday, 12 or 2 pm
Reservations:  48-hour notice
Contact: 727-203-3504
Cost:  $18.95 Afternoon Tea; $14.95 Lunch Tea; $12.95 Young Lady’s and Gentleman’s Tea; $12.95 Princess/Prince Tea
Destination Tea Tips:  We recommend reserving your afternoon tea well in advance of their 48-hour requirement, as The White Heron books up regularly. Note the White Heron has a “no cell phone” policy in the tearoom (we love this). They also have their own extensive loose leaf tea selection with sniff jars, and gift shop with many treasures to explore – leave time!
Sponsor Disclaimer: At the time of this posting, White Heron Tea & Gifts and Driftwood Tea Company are Destination Tea advertisers. That said, we expect all our write-ups to be both gracious and honest (and every now and then, super-rad).

Prices and teatimes are subject to change. Please see our Florida afternoon tea directory for the latest details.

exterior of afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL

Destination Tea Notes: Walking through the “Tea Room” doorway at the White Heron Tea & Gifts, you instantly feel restful beachy vibes. Aqua and bright white flowing curtains soften the space, which is decorated with sparkling chandeliers, art featuring herons (of course) and cool blue tones. In fact, this tearoom is so popular that The White Heron recently doubled their dining space to accommodate reservations they were having to turn away. Sitting down to afternoon tea here, you’d never know that behind this relaxing vignette is a woman of prolific industriousness.

A Certified Tea Specialist and Tea Sommelier, Kelly Hackman runs the tearoom, writes for World Tea News and the newsletter she produces for The White Heron (The Tea Room Times), and stocks her gift shop with a variety of goods, including a t-shirt I snagged that she designed and dozens of teas from her own tea company (Driftwood Tea Company), whose teas she sometimes incorporates into brews by Cotee River Brewing Company, which her husband and she own. Whew! And still, Kelly is full of creative energy, with more plans in the works, like a new upcoming beer pairing and tea pairing event for the tearoom. (P.S. Kelly also created the tea pairings in our recently released Garden Tea Party Guide).

We notice and appreciate that this extremely affordable afternoon tea (available for takeout) begins with a nicely sized savory course, and tapers portions as you work your way up the tier, so that you don’t experience sugar overload. And we smile at the sweetness of White Heron’s servers, who bring an extra chair to the neighboring table, so that while a princess enjoys her tea, there is a place for her doll to sit.

exterior of afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Enter through this fabulous flower frame
tearoom entrance at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
We agree, cell phones away please, for proper enjoyment of afternoon tea.
tearoom at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Even after adding tea tables in this second room, the White Heron is still fully booked on a regular basis.
tearoom at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Loving the decorative mirrors and teapot centerpieces
our tea table afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
During our teatime, we enjoy peering at the various pretty teasets in a nearby china cabinet

Tea Service

teacup at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Light blue and ivory Noritake china pattern
teapot at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Each guest chooses a 3-cup pot, snuggled into one of a variety of tea cosies that keep the tea to temperature. Our gracious hostess Dawn pours our first cup. I have a light Paris in Bloom White Tea and my 11yo reviewer goes with a deliciously fragrant Blueberry Pie Green Tea.

Scones & Spreads, Savories and Sweets

3-tiered tray at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
We like that The White Heron makes as much in-house as their small kitchen in this historic building will allow.
tea sandwiches at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Our favorite tea sandwiches are the super yummy Scratchmade Chicken Salad on croissant and Traditional Cucumber. Also included are Cheddar Cheese and Ham on Wheat with the house Mustard-Relish Spread and Turkey and Provolone with house Lemon-Pepper Aioli Spread on Marble Rye.
scone course of afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
The White Heron uses a 3-ingredient recipe that bakes up more like a springy cake than a traditional scone. Flavors vary, and on this day ours are plain with a hint of vanilla, and blueberry lemon with Belgian white chocolate, served with strawberry preserves and housemade cream.
dessert course at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Dessert includes Mini Yellow Cakes with Vanilla Cream Frosting Topped with White Chocolate, Caramel and Vanilla French Macaron and Mini Lemon Cream Pies.
gift shop at afternoon tea at The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Driftwood Tea Company Teas and gifts galore
t-shirt from The White Heron Tea & Gifts in New Port Richey, FL
Kelly’s response to the question of whether her tearoom needed to stay open as an essential business during pandemic lockdown days, and my new favorite t-shirt!
DestinationTea
Tea Voyageuse, discovering the world of afternoon tea, based in Atlanta, Georgia.

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