Having a tea shop so close to home is a tea lover’s dream, so you can imagine how happy I was to discover Burdett’s Tea Shop in downtown historic Springfield, Tennessee. Established in 2001, the combination of a quaint tea shop located in an equally quaint small town evokes images of the simple life and simple pleasures.
The Evolution of Burdett’s Tea Shop
Burdett’s Tea Shop and Trading Company is close to the courthouse square, situated in a building that was originally built in 1912. Initially used as a general store then a drug store over the following 88 years, it was bought by Sam and Sandy Ramsey in 2000, before an extensive renovation was conducted
Ensuring that certain architectural aspects were maintained, which included the original tin ceiling now used in the dining room of the tea shop, the Ramsey’s have established a well-preserved business enhanced with old-time décor in a place where visitors can enjoy delicious teas and scrumptious food in a whimsical atmosphere.
Open Monday through Saturday – 11:00 am – 2:30 pm, Burdett’s Tea Shop has dark paneled walls in a space filled with country-style furniture, bric-a-brac and items for sale – such as:
- Tea pots, cups and tea accessories
- Wall-hangings, ornaments and knick-knacks
- Gifts, jewelry and figurines
- Aprons, tea towels and linen
It’s amazing that they can fit so much in a small space without being overly-crowded. There are several tables of different sizes covered with lacey, crocheted tablecloths, along with teapot-shaped lamps, fresh flowers, antique sugar bowls and sugar spoons with handles that have a tea cup design at the end.
More Than a Tea Shop
Although tea is the main focus, their well-rounded menu includes homemade soups, sandwiches, quiches and delectable cakes, pies and cookies. You can also order handmade scones with a cup or pot of tea, that comes with jam and cream, making it much like an authentic Devonshire tea.
I would say that 99% of the patrons were female and I saw at a table close to mine, three women with their young daughters who looked very much like characters from an old English storybook. Each little girl had short bob hairstyles, decorated with large ribbons and wearing their Sunday best dresses.
The staff are so friendly and very attentive. My server was Lorie, who was wonderful with not only taking care of me, but everyone else in the tea room as she scrambled this way and that, reminiscent of the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland.
If you didn’t know any better – apart from the Southern accents – you’d think you were in an English tea shop. You can also book parties and events, such as meetings or weddings.
Who Provides the Tea?
All the tea available at Burdett’s Tea Shop is from Blue Roses Tea, which is gourmet loose tea in a wide variety of flavors and blends, such as Black, Green, Oolong and Herbal, sourced from tea gardens around the world and harvested in alliance with the Ethical Tea Partnership.
At the moment, the tea is only available at Burdett’s Tea Shop and Blue Roses Tea’s website is still under construction so keep checking back – the tea is worth the wait.
Blue Roses Tea
I had these three teas at the tea shop after a sumptuous meal of Quiche Lorraine with Vegetable Soup. I’d already tasted the delicious Tomato Basil soup and brought home two pieces of their warm Chocolate Chip Pie.
- Russian Caravan – apparently this is a customer favorite at Burdett’s Tea Shop and I can see why. So delicately fragrant with a gentle floral and perfumey flavor. It was lovely without milk but still retained the wonderful aroma and taste when I added it. It was so good, I bought a packet home with me.
- Oolong Ti Kuan Yin – this is an organic slimming tea which has a marine aroma and flavor. Gentle but quite like a light stock – almost fishy, which is why I wasn’t too enamored with it. But still, if you’re a fan of Oolong and don’t mind an almost salty aftertaste, this tea could be for you.
- High “Antiox” Ginger Green – This green tea was so delicate that I could hardly taste the green or the ginger, although the aftertaste was definitely there. It was clean and fresh, making it a perfect palate cleanser, but I assume it needs a longer steep with more tea.
Along with Russian Caravan, the other two teas I brought home with me were:
- Borengajuli Assam (2nd Flush) – oh, how I love this tea, which is robust and indeed – jammy! The malty aftertaste was addictive. I had to keep sniffing and sipping. Being a lover of strong black tea, this did not disappoint.
- Apple Viennese – this herbal blend was a little overpowering for me. Said to be reminiscent of Apple Pie, it probably needs to be made with a small amount or watered down a lot. Strong notes of citrus and hibiscus, it would make a great iced tea.
If ever you’re in the neighborhood or visiting Nashville, take the time to spend the day in Springfield and take your tea time at Burdett’s Tea Shop. There are many things to do in the area and if you’re a tea lover who loves quaint surroundings that hint at the English ritual of tea, this place is sure to delight you.