This afternoon company founder Martin Ekechukwu was kind of enough to give me a sneak peek of the space in the Preston Forest Shopping Center, just behind Ziziki’s. With his toddler daughter in tow, he explained how she was the impetus behind wanting to launch a teahouse.
“My wife and I were living in LA and we could never find anything for [our daughter] to do, there’s not really a big family atmosphere there. We wanted to create a place for moms that was cool, and bringing kids was not faux paux.”
Ekechukwu—who settled on Dallas because it has the right family demographics and a tea culture that’s still developing—said he pictures this teahouse being a neighborhood hangout. There will be free WiFi, lounge areas, and a small stage for regular children’s activities like story times and puppet shows.
There will also be a service counter where customers can browse teas, because as Ekechukwu explained it, “smelling and seeing the color of tealeaves is such a big part of the experience.” A handful of tea sandwiches and salads will be served—and Preston Hollow neighbor Duni Borga is helping with the pastry menu, which will include tea cookies and crepes.
You can expect to see five other Village Tea Company teahouses in the Dallas area by the end of 2010, Ekechukwu said. There are grand opening celebrations and promotions in the works, so I’ll keep you posted.
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