There’s something synonymous with the smell of autumn in the air, a light drizzle coming down, and a warm cuppa. A cup of tea that is, maybe accompanied by a crumbly, buttery scone lathered in lemon curd or perfectly shaped triangle tea sandwiches.
The Northshore area has two great tea rooms that can make you feel like you’ve been transported to the English countryside and a tea shop to make your favorite teas at home. All are located in or next to Bothell’s Country Village.
Elizabeth & Alexander’s
Elizabeth & Alexander’s English Tea Room is located just south of the Country Village entrance at 23808 Bothell Everett Highway.
Originally opened by Dean and Sue Hale about 15 years ago, it is now owned and operated by Dustin Weller who bought the restaurant four years ago.
The tea room, open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, serves breakfast until 11 a.m., lunch and afternoon tea. They offer a variety of 14 teas to choose from, including black, decaf and herbal teas.
Guests have several choices of dining experiences, from booking the Alexander Room for small, private parties, to enjoying tea and a scone while sitting in a wing-backed chair in the Churchill Room, or sitting at a small table near the woodstove with friends in the Parlor while enjoying high tea.
Families of young children looking for a kid-friendly dining experience where good manners can be practiced in a welcoming setting will enjoy ordering the children’s tea for lunch. The lunch comes with lemon curd and raspberry jam sandwiches, cookies and fruit, accompanied by a pot of hot cocoa.
Elizabeth & Alexander’s afternoon tea is a three-tiered sampling of many of the kitchen’s specialties, including scones, sandwiches, cookies, chocolate rum raspberry torte and tea of your choice. Reservations for the Alexander Room, larger parties, and for Saturdays are strongly recommended by calling (425) 489-9210.
Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available, including gluten-free scones, which need to be pre-ordered in advance. Their full menu can be previewed at elizabethandalexander.com.
Village Eatery & Tea Company
Tucked back into the left corner of Country Village is the quaint Village Eatery & Tea Company. Opened in July 2009 by Janice Zeller, a British expatriate, the restaurant offers lunch, several high tea options, teas and bakery items for sale.
It is open from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily except Tuesdays and select holidays, including – appropriately so – Boxing Day, the day after Christmas.
The restaurant is knownfor their wide selection of authentic British fare, including a beef or chicken Cornish pasty (pronounced PASS-tee), sausage rolls, Union Jack Salad, along with scones, and a selection of traditional British beverages such as Lemon Barley Water, a style of lemonade.
Just selecting what kind of tea you want can be an adventure, with over 60 kinds of black, Darjeeling, herbal, and caffeine-free options to choose from on the menu. The loose-leaf teas can also be bought in bulk by the ounce to take home.
Vegetarian options are available, but gluten-free menu options need to be pre-ordered in advance.
Zeller recommends parties of seven or more and those planning to dine on Saturdays call for reservations at (425) 483-2005.
To see Village Eatery’s full menu, visit villageeateryandteacompany.com.
An Afternoon to Remember
Fine Tea & Gifts
The newest addition to the tea business in the Northshore area is An Afternoon to Remember, which was opened this summer by owner Amy Lawrence. The shop features over 150 varieties of loose tea, many of which are Lawrence’s own blends. Located on the ground floor of the Suite C building on the south side of Country Village, visitors can also taste sample a few teas already brewed while shopping.
The store, besides tea, offers a selection of tea accessories such as teapots, tea books, cookbooks and gift items.
In addition to the store, Lawrence’s website, afternoontoremember.com, offers online ordering, recipes, menu suggestions, and links to upcoming classes, events, a blog and newsletter.
An Afternoon to Remember is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.