Indie Toledo: Elaine’s Tea Shoppe

Part of a series about independent restaurants and retailers in the Toledo area.

Toledo isn’t exactly the place you’d expect to find tea and scones, but you can in fact find a place that serves tea and scones on Monroe Street in West Toledo.

Elaine’s Tea Shoppe, which has been in the area for about 10 years at various locations, sells loose-leaf tea, tea accessories, and other paraphernalia as well as offering a tea service at all times of the day.

Elaine’s is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

Food & Beverage

Elaine’s offers a tea service to customers who stay in the shop which has a variety of offerings.  The main menu is a list of the varieties of tea available at the tea service.  I vastly prefer the green teas, but that’s more of a personal preference.

The shop has multiple varieties available, primarily black teas, oolong teas, green teas, and white teas.  Each type costs $3.50, which includes multiple re-steeps.

There are other things on the menu, as well, including Elaine’s recipe for scones with jam and cream.

Products

The greatest variety at Elaine’s includes the various tea-related accessories and other items that a casual browser might enjoy.

First off, there are a variety of teapots, tea strainers and infusers, and other items to help a tea enthusiast to brew tea.  Currently, since it’s summer, the shop is carrying iced tea makers as well as regular pots to make hot tea in.

Apart from single pots, the shop also carries sets – for my birthday, my friends bought me a set with a teapot and a cup, while other sets come with a pot and two cups.

Elaine’s also carries food products, particularly loose-leaf tea (nothing comes in bagged form) and flavored varieties of honey, which – incidentally – are created locally in Waterville, Ohio.  The honey comes in several varieties, such as Lemon, Cinnamon, or Lavender.  There are also other sweeteners available, such as the popular tea sweetener German rock salt.

In terms of tea, Elaine’s carries black teas, oolong teas, white teas, green teas, herbal tisanes, and blooming teas.  All of these line one long wall on the right side of the shop.  They come in small or large bags – you can purchase packs of 4 as well – and you can always buy a 2-oz or 3-oz tin and buy loose-leaf tea to be put in the tin if you don’t like to use up a lot of packaging.

Critic’s Conclusion

If you’re interested in learning more about tea – and maybe discovering a new brew – then Elaine’s is the place for you.  Elaine is one of a handful of Tea Masters in the country, and she can answer practically any question on the topic.

My best recommendation is to visit with the intent of having tea in the shop.  The service is very nice, there is a wide variety of teas to try for $3.50, and you can try something new each time.  My favorite thing to do?  Have tea with a friend.

*Please note that Elaine’s Tea Shoppe requests that you pay by check or in cash if possible.

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