Originally published in The Weekly Packet, August 23, 2018
Water Street café expands with success of tea events
A recent Alice in Wonderland-themed children’s tea at the Harbor House Café in Blue Hill drew children dressed in character.
by Anne Berleant
“Terrific” is etched in a spider’s web over the entrance to the Harbor House Café on Water Street, a reminder of a Charlotte’s Web children’s tea event held in 7/that featured a live pig named Wilbur on the café grounds.
The Water Street café also held an Alice in Wonderland tea before beginning its grownup teas, held each Sunday afternoon in August. For the winter holidays, a children’s Norman Rockwell-themed Christmas tea is in the works.
While this isn’t the first year owner Kathy Eaton has held summer tea events since opening the café four years ago, she now has a proper tearoom, after expanding into unoccupied space in the Pendleton Building. The outside 12/has also grown this summer, allowing Eaton to serve more customers al fresco.
Eaton said her new tea room was always part of her plan for the café. “I thought I’d get my feet wet first, and see what happened.”
Her themed children’s teas, grownup afternoon teas, and private teas have been “so successful and welcomed,” she had no qualms about the expansion, she said, setting up in the main café, an adjacent room and the new tearoom Sunday, August 12, for an afternoon tea that afternoon.
Sunday teas are by reservation only—she can fit about 28 people, she said—but the new tearoom will not require them.
“The whole idea for the tearoom is that people can come in for tea and scones,” she said.
She serves private Harbor House label jams, clotted cream and home-baked scones, tartlets and other treats and, naturally, tea, while a harpist plays in the background.
When she told friends and customers about her plans to offer tea events, she was surprised by the response.
“All of my tea cups and teapots have been donated,” she said. “Once people found out I was doing them, they [brought them in].”
To reserve a seat at a Sunday afternoon tea in August, or to arrange a private tea, stop in the café or call Eaton at 374-7027.