Do you have an Anglophile in your brood? Your teen, can't get enough Jane Austen or Hogwarts? You may want to take a trip to the charming town of Tecumseh and have tea at the British Tea Garden and Rooftop Cafe, a wonderful cafe, perfect for lunch, dessert, and tea-or any combination thereof!
Tecumseh itself is located about 30 minutes southwest of Ann Arbor. Located at the edge of prime farm land, with the rail road cutting through town, Tecumseh was a prime stop for lumbering. It is now going through a resurgence as a dining and antiquing destination for metro Detroiters, including a prestigious rating of one of the best small towns to visit in Michigan by thecrazytourist.com
The British Tea Garden, located at 112 E. Chicago Blvd., is centrally located on the main street of town. We entered the restaurant from the lot in the rear with ample, free parking. The restaurant area is long and narrow, with high wooden booths lining a sidewall so that we felt oh so snug as we left the January chill behind.
Our booth was in the center of the dining area which provided a wonderful, cozy, comfort as we pored over the menu, astounded by the healthy food options and excited by the tea options.
I am not sure the best way to select the tea- is it better to select the tea based on the food choice, or the other way around? Or should one simply make the choices independently of the other?
Several of our family had the raspberry iced tea which was gently sweet, but not overpowering. Out daughter, the tea aficionado, had the caramel toffee rooibos, which was mellow and flavorful- yet again surprisingly not overpowering. The porcelain cups were thin and decorative and perfect for enjoying the tea in style. And yes, it did bring out our attempts at speaking in a British accent, with yours truly of course winning honors for the worst British accent ever!
The menu was pleasingly healthy and varied and included several vegetarian options. We ordered an assortment of soups, salads and of course the crumpets with butter and preserves. The crumpets were moist and nicely textured, without a hint of dryness or chewiness that occasionally can plague a crumpet, with delicious preserves to add that extra bit of welcome sweetness.
Jenny had the Veggie Wrap sandwich which features cucumbers, avocado (her favorite!), lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, and provolone cheese- topped with a delicious honey mustard.
I enjoyed a hearty vegetarian soup and a dish they call, “Our Famous Apple Slaw.” While I profess to being ignorant of this dish prior to my visit, despite its apparent accolades, I can wholeheartedly say it deserves its title!
It was delicious. The fresh cabbage, sliced perfectly mixed with tart apples, grapes, raisins, mandarin oranges, and peanuts in a dressing that was sweet but did not overpower the natural fruit flavors-a difficult balancing act, but one which the British Tea Garden pulled off with aplomb.
After paying our reasonably priced bill, we lingered a bit in the small gift shop area in the front of the store, enjoying the assortment of imported and domestic loose teas, cards, tea sets and British music as well.
With no question, we will return to the British Tea Garden and I would encourage all travelers to southeast Michigan (and residents too) to add this delightful cafe to your travel plans. You will walk away satisfied and nourished in that special way that only a delicious pot of tea can provide.
Enjoy and Travel Local!
Family Questions for Discussion
- How is tea harvested?
- Why did it become so popular in Britain?
- What is more popular in the U.S.-coffee or tea?
- What are the steps to brew the perfect pot of tea?
- How does the boiling water bring out the flavor of the tea leaves?
- How much tea is consumed in the U.S? Great Britain? Other parts of the world?
- What is your favorite tea flavor?
- What else did your time at the British Tea Garden inspire you to learn, dream and do?
Looking for more family friendly food suggestions? Check out our food page!