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Sterling Tea Spot invites Rockwall to taste something new

With over 100 homemade flavors of loose leaf tea lining their walls, Sterling Tea Spot believes there’s a tea for everyone.

Tea Time

(ROCKWALL, TX — February 13, 2018) Even if the Starbucks drive thru knows your vehicle by sight, you own the latest high-end espresso maker, or you’ve secretly googled the phrase “coffee IV” before, Stuart and Brenda Meyers believe there’s a tea out there for you.

Their new business Sterling Tea Spot, located on North Goliad in the building that used to host The Life House, offers visitors the same cozy atmosphere as any good coffee shop (crackling fireplace, peaceful music, comfy couches for lounging or tables for focusing), with one key difference: the absence of coffee. But with over 100 different teas to try, you might just find you won’t even miss it.

Brenda’s passion for blending loose leaf teas began as a hobby in her own kitchen. After crafting a few samples for a Chandler’s Landing Christmas Bazaar in 2005 and receiving dozens of questions, she realized how little most people knew about tea. She purchased the house that now holds Sterling Tea Spot and opened her own business in July 2006, armed with knowledge of the tea industry and a zeal for flavor experimentation.

“I just kind of immersed myself in it,” Brenda said. “I started building my line of teas as people started coming, and I had them taste test every new tea that I made to get some feedback.”

Brenda designed every flavor in the Sterling Tea brand herself, using imported ingredients from India, China, Sri Lanka, and Europe along with fruits, herbs and flowers from all over the U.S. Today she designs specific tea flavors for some of her clients, like the Perot Museum in Dallas, and she shares favorite blends with some of her local clients, like Zanata, Book Club Café, Bin 303, and Charlie’s.

The teas that used to sit atop her kitchen counter are now produced in a warehouse. But Brenda is adamant that the flavors must be perfect every time: She has her employees taste every single batch of tea for quality and consistency before they put it out for sale.

“We want to stick to small batch blending, because we want to keep the consistency and the overall flavor,” Brenda said. “We want our hands on it: we don’t want it to get too mechanical.”

Over the years, while Brenda used only a small portion of her building for her own business, she leased out the other sections to tenants like The Life House. After the building suffered a fire several years ago, the Meyers had to rebuild so much of the interior that they decided it was time for the next chapter of their small business dream: a tea shop.

“When it was all done, I thought, ‘I just want to put my tea shop here. Let’s just see what happens,’” Brenda said. “We just hope the community will embrace it.”

Sterling Tea Spot opened for business on September 18, 2017. Coffee connoisseurs who aren’t familiar with their tea preferences yet don’t have to worry about feeling lost when they examine the entire wall of tea selections. Employees are happy to give a “tea tour” with helpful tips on what to try. Teas are arranged by type: black, green, white, and herbal, and they range from sweet sensations like the Chocolate Chai Latte to bold spices like Ginger Snap.

The Meyers said they aren’t looking to replace coffee, just to offer a fun alternative.

“I don’t want to take away from coffee: I think it’s delicious,” Brenda said. “I would rather tell you to bring tea into your life. There’s a place for both.”

Story and photo by Julie Anne Wells, Blue Ribbon News.

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