Thursday, September 3, 2009

Opening Day at Holly Cottage Tearoom!

Finally! The tearoom Newnan has long *needed* has opened its doors, and what lovely doors they are! My friend Maureen Rogers of the Tea and Talk blog came all the way from Hampton to be at the tearoom's opening with me, and we both had such a great time! We spent 2-1/2 hours there (I should mention that I am on vacation this week), and I can tell you I will definitely be a regular!

Maureen and I decided to meet for tea early, at 11, and she was wearing a stylish hat with her pretty blue suit. Because we got there so early, we were treated to a brief tour of the tearoom with Chef Linda Rivers herself and her lovely mother, daughter Michelle and Rachel, one of the servers. Having been in this building in many of its previous "restaurant" lives, I was quite impressed with the elegant transformation which has occurred. I was last there in the winter when it was still a meat-and-three place. My friends Martha Ann Parks and Christi Estes of Panoply Interior Design happened to be dining at the next table, which I thought was fitting since Panoply did the design work for Holly Cottage.

Our tea arrived promptly, and both Maureen and I admired the design of the tea cozies which surrounded our pots of tea.

I was happy to see some men arriving at the tearoom, including an old writer's group friend of mine, Mike Maloy, a talented sign painter who I learned is responsible for the Holly Cottage Tearoom sign. Isn't it beautiful! I love the touch of the "HTC" monogram on the lady's teacup. I asked Michelle if they would have a gift shop one day (yes!) and told her I'd love to see this design on a T-shirt or tote bag or mug. (Or all of the above.) Mike, by the way, was there having a panini sandwich and said he gives it "two thumbs up."

But let's get down to business. We tea lovers don't go to tearooms for the great signage or the elegant decor, we go to *take tea,* and I could not be more pleased with the teatime fare we enjoyed. The tea sandwiches included (from left in the photo) Chicken Salad with Tarragon, Traditional Cucumber Sandwich with Dill and Cream Cheese, Egg Salad with Tomato (Chef Rivers calls it "tuh-mah-toe," and it is worth the price of admission just to hear one's tea menu described in that lovely British accent), and a Cornish Pasty made with roast beef (delicious!). All the sandwiches looked and tasted fresh, as I fully expected them to be.

We had two types of scones, traditional Currant Scones and then Cranberry and Orange Scones. Again, these were just delicious and I loved the fact we were served lemon curd, cream and jam without even having to ask. There was a beautiful petit four with a soft jam-filled cake inside, and a teeny-tiny little Lemon Tart topped with a raspberry, blueberry and kiwi. Heavenly!

I was already quite full by this point, having sipped cup after cup of the very satisfying Earl Grey tea I'd ordered, yet I managed to make room for the homemade Cherry Truffle, Chocolate-covered Strawberry and fresh grapes. Everything was truly delicious, and the service was simply impeccable. (I *love* servers who manage to be both attentive and unobtrusive.) I intend to be a regular visitor at Holly Cottage, and I hope I'll see lots of you tea friends there. I feel rather like a proud parent, and so very pleased that my town now has a first-class tearoom which I hope will be serving tea for many happy years to come!


  1. oh angela, it sounds wonderful. Thank you for recounting your visit there!

  2. Angela, your review is wonderful! The photos are goregeous: makes me want to go right over there. I can't wait to lucky we are to get an authentic English Tea Room.

    By the way: did you hear about the "Tea / Table Top" settings at The Centre for Performing Arts? (It's part of the Newnan's Book Club celebration...I read about it in The Times Herald, seems like it is Thursday and Friday of this week? Not exactly sure 'when' but I thought of you when I read about it).

    Have a great vacation, Joanie

  3. Great review and fabulous photos. OK, now I'm ready to drive to Georgia for afternoon tea!!!

  4. Angela, that was such an enjoyable tearoom visit. Your photos are great. I hope this was the first of many visits to Holly Cottage Tearoom.

  5. lovely review angela! i am so excited for you and your town! how wonderful and i admit freely to beeing a bit green eyed! oooo and to hear that lovely british accent while being served tea... well that would be a dream come true! thank you so much for sharing and if i should ever pass that way, i will definetly drop in. the sign and ideas for the log are wonderful! and i do so like the looks of the tea tray! everything in very managable sizes and a nice array. i do despise oversized tea things. feel more like i am at some buffet then!lol big herbal and honey hugs to you and thanks again for sharing:)

  6. I can't wait, I can't wait, I can't wait.........but alas, am so busy I must.........oooooo, my mouth is watering.

  7. Wow, everything looks absolutely delectable! I'm so envious Angela, I wish I had a pretty tea room in my town...

    As always, thank you for sharing!

  8. How exciting! I love hearing of new tearooms. I wish them much success. Oh, and the food looked good enough to eat. Yummmm! Lucky you.

  9. I forgot to mention how cute you and Maureen looked!

  10. Sounds like a lovely tea room. Thanks for sharing your visit with us.

  11. ps Angela: I just left an email for you & Deberah...the "Tea Tables" and "Flower Display" at The Centre for Performing Arts is just great! It runs today from 1 to 5 p.m. and Friday is 'just up' your alley! Vintage clothes are also on display, so you have:
    flowers & vintage gowns:

    sounds like a 'trifecta' to me!


  12. Such good fortune to have a tea room in your own hometown. Yay!!!!!

  13. Goodness what a lovely looking tea and their sign as well! Thank you for sharing.

  14. Ooo, I will add a listing to Great Tearooms of America! Angela - my husband soooo misses his Ivor Dewdney pasties from Plymouth (UK). Do you think the chef would share her recipe with me? They look delicious!

  15. I'll have to take my mom as soon as she is up and about. Thanks for the tip. The magazine looks great, by the way!

  16. One thing I approve of with these tea delicacies is the small portions. In today's out-of-control serving size world, it's a welcome respite to have just a little taste instead of too much on your plate. --Spirituality of Tea

  17. Could some please email me and tell me the location of Holly Cottage Tearoom? I'm sorry but, I must of missed the location of the address somehow!
    My email address is
    Thanks, and I'm looking forward to surprising my friend!
    Rhonda Smith


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