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- You know Starbucks is watching. It has been six years since Remedy Teas opened its cafe on 15th Ave E. As its sometimes sleepy street undergoes a sea change — an overhaul of Coastal Kitchen (here) an injection of new energy and new investment from Rione XIII (here), The Wandering Goose (here) and, coming soon, Ada’s Technical Books (here) — we visited with Remedy to learn more about its contribution to Capitol Hill’s cafe culture. And, of course, to say happy birthday.
“Tea has been going through this renaissance in the last 10, 12 years,” Anthony Arnold tells CHS. “It has completely mirrored what has happened in coffee.”
Arnold is part of the family-backed ownership of Remedy spanning its 15th at E Harrison cafe and online and wholesale businesses. Six years ago, CHS was, um, a little excited about Remedy’s arrival. “Every crumb was a delight. The chocolate was heartbreakingly good.” CHS was a little different back then. So was Remedy.
“We built Remedy on the idea that the first one on Harrison was a prototype,” Arnold said. While the expansion plans haven’t yet fully brewed, Arnold said Remedy has grown into a successful, family-run independent business.
“We’ve been resisting the idea of working with other parties, investors,” he said. “We want to keep it in the family and focus on becoming a profitable business. Our goal is never to build multiple chains.”
Anthony Arnold along with his wife AJ Arnold and his brother Chris Arnold employ around a dozen employees. In addition to sales at the cafe, Remedy also supplies teas to restaurants across Seattle. But the heart and soul of things remains the numbered brews of dozens of teas served from the wall at 15th and Harrison.
“We are always reminded how lucky it is to be able to be directly involved in the customer’s satisfaction,” Arnold says of owning and operating a showcase for their product. “A lot of companies can just put their stuff on the shelf and not have a real relationship with their customer.”
With six years under its belt, Remedy has hung in there long enough to be come part of a new 15th Ave E. While it’s busier, more commercial and the parking can suck even more, the change also means more smart people practicing their food+drink arts.
“Look where 15th is going,” Arnold said. “There are great specialists. It’s finally shaping up to where people are really good at specific things.”
That connoisseurship and the practice of doing “specific things” might be part of a defining characteristic of the Hill’s cafe culture. The trends in tea, Arnold says, fit right in with a growing focus on both creative and functional blends and finding “the best” of classic varieties of black and green teas.
Tuesday, November 6th, Remedy will share Election Day and celebrate cafe connoisseurship and its sixth birthday. The cafe is handing out “Free TNT For All” — the “spicy chili-turmeric-ginger detox tonic that many folks fiend for,” Arnold says. Customers who buy loose leaf will get goodies and online customers who order will have “treats stuffed in their packages” (Arnold’s words, not ours!).
“But mostly we want to express a heartfelt and sincere ‘thank you,’ Arnold said. “We can’t help but get a little misty over all that we have shared over six years with our friends and neighbors. It’s a great thing.”
You can learn more at remedyteas.com.
- Congratulations to transplanted Restaurant Zoe for joining Altura in Seattle Met’s best restaurants of 2012 list. Too bad the Met forgot to include Zoe. We visited the Quinn’s sibling when it debuted at 14th and Union last February.
- Finally a list from people qualified to make such a list. PETA dubs the Highline’s sandwich one of the best vegan BLTs in the country.
- “Capitol Hill Restaurant Space Seeking Experienced Restaurant Operator” — want to be part of the Vox Apartments building?
- Bethany Jean Clement le gusta “another” Hill Mexican restaurant: “Pretty much everything at Fogón is extra good.” Everything? Yum.
- Plum still needs to raise $15k in three days to create Seattle’s “first vegan food truck.”
- Cafe Presse’s Jim Drohman has the best Seattle restaurant owner blog ever.
Want breakfast? Capitol Hill has quite a few new choices — including JuiceBox popping up inside La Bete . Smart, no?
- Reader note from John:
A food press release:
The North Hill Bakery ( 518 15th Ave. E.) has a guest baker making sourdough english muffins and sourdough baguettes.
There you have it.
- Masala Mondays have returned at Poppy. Meanwhile, Monday means paella and sangria at Terra Plata.
- Also, happy first birthday Terra Plata. CHS chronicled its sometimes difficult birth here.
- What do you think of the new Cafe Pettirosso ?
- Oola filling another cask is good news/bad news. Good news? Another cask. Bad news? You have to wait for Waitsburg Whiskey. UPDATE: Oola clarifies that its whiskey is in stock. They’re just making morrrrre!
This week’s CHS food+drink advertiser directory