By Ken Trainor
And speaking of Elizabeth Berg, in our recent interview she said there should be a venue somewhere in Oak Park offering high tea.
Turns out there is. Well, not "high tea," exactly, but "afternoon tea." Serenitea, a little storefront just down Pleasant Street from Poor Phil's has been somewhat overlooked. Proprietor Tracy Boone and her daughter Heather read the aforementioned article and immediately contacted us.
"We believe there should be a tea cafe in Oak Park because the atmosphere lends itself to the bygone era of the tea ritual," Boone writes. "The tea ritual can be a social gathering or a personal time of reflection and relaxation. We offer Afternoon Tea and not High Tea. As Americans, we use the term interchangeably which is incorrect. Afternoon Tea is finger sandwiches, scones, tea bread and dessert with your choice of a pot of tea whereas High Tea is more of a dinner with meat dishes, served to the lower class on high tables. We require reservations for Afternoon Tea.
"In addition, to enhance the Afternoon Tea experience and the [sense of a] bygone era, we work with Pleasant Home to offer Tea and Tour. We offer a Breakfast Around the World, featuring three countries a week, from 8:30 to 11 a.m. Also, we offer a light lunch. You are always welcome to join us for a cup or pot of tea with pastries. Our pastries are homemade scones, lavender tea cookies, lemon tarts, etc., which, of course, do not require a reservation.
"We are closed on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday, and Friday, we are open from 8:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Thursday is our late night, 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday we open at 9:30 and close at 6:30. Sunday we're open from 10 to 5.
"We are sad to say that 90% of our customers are not from Oak Park. Our customers are from the far west suburbs, Chicago, and tourists. We would love Oak Park support."
This is easily the most refined "correction" we've ever run. Serenitea is located at 1046 Pleasant St. (just east of Marion). It's easy to overlook. Call 708-660-9670 or visit sereniteaoakpark.com for more information.