BY SARA SHEIKH
As soon as you walk in, it’s obvious that Cup & Kettle Tea Co. is a hot-drink spot where tea plays the lead, not a supporting role. This is no coffee shop.
Cup & Kettle, 208 N. Walnut, carries everything for the tea aficionado, including kettles, sugar bowls and creamers, reusable cotton tea bags, travel mugs, tea pots with infusers, and timers that indicate steeping times for various teas.
The shop, which opened in March, offers tea lovers a place where they can have a bite, sip a cup of tea, and make tea-related purchases. And with more than 50 teas available, Cup & Kettle owners Kayla Maldonado, 27, and Jessica Messmer, 34, say their shop offers a tea for every taste.
“We want tea to be the featured product, not an afterthought,” says Messmer. “And we don’t want tea to be intimidating. We want to feel approachable by tea fans of any level.”
Prior to making a purchase, customers are encouraged to sample different teas. Messmer and Maldonado are also happy to make recommendations—from hard-to-find teas to one of the shop’s current best sellers, like Raspberry Green, The Big Chill, or Earl Grey. The shop also carries a rotating collection of 10 signature Cup & Kettle Tea Co. teas. All teas are free trade or direct trade purchased.
Cup & Kettle offers free Wi-Fi, sandwiches, and you can even get a cup of coffee, with beans from local roasters. There’s an emphasis on local products. A cookie with Earl Grey tea is made by Baked!, the honey is from Hoosier Honey, and baked goods come from Lucky Guy Bakery and Piccoli Dolci, among others.
The Cup & Kettle Tea Co. name may sound familiar. In November 2016, the woman-owned business operated a pop-up shop in College Mall for the holiday season. Prior to that, Cup & Kettle products were only available online or wholesale.
Tea shop hours are 8 a.m.–8 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. For more information, call 812-287-7978 or visit cupandkettletea.com.
Here is a slideshow with more scenes from Cup & Kettle Tea Co.’s grand opening celebration (Photos by Rodney Margison):