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Tea Time: Columbus-area eatery offers one of the most unique tea services you’ll ever see

Tea Time: Columbus-area eatery offers one of the most unique tea services you’ll ever see


Walking into Asterisk Supper Club in Uptown Westerville is a bit like wandering into a few different movie scenes that have all been jumbled together. The first thing you’ll see is the expansive wooden bar, which was built in the late 1800s and salvaged from an antique shop in Cincinnati. With a quick glance to the right, you’ll then notice the bookshelves that line the walls from floor to ceiling, filled with hundreds of books from every genre imaginable. 

When owner Megan Ada was creating her vision for a new restaurant concept, her bibliophile father, Jesse, inspired this unique addition. And her mother, Laurie, was the one to suggest that the eatery also function as a modern tea house. “There aren’t many concepts like this in Columbus,” said Ada. “We thought it would be perfect to embrace the cozy, historic ambiance of the space and offer an old school tea service.”

Venturing further into Asterisk, you’ll pass many intricate details, like vintage chandeliers and terrazzo floors, before arriving at a 30 foot long communal table, surrounded by several smaller seating areas. The entire location pays homage to times gone by, when people slowed down to gather with loved ones and enjoy leisurely meals. And the tea service, served Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 4:00 p.m., is a highlight of that nostalgic tribute. 


Guests may choose from a Petite Tea, the perfect size for one person, or a Full Tea, which is best shared between two people. Both options include your choice of tea, a soup or salad, a variety of tea sandwiches, plus scones and dessert. Ada, who also owns Ampersand Asian Supper Club in the Short North, shared, “We wanted to create an elevated dining experience with no distractions, where you can sit with friends or family and enjoy the atmosphere. We also encourage people to come by themselves, order some tea, and borrow a book to read.”

The tea service presentation is made up of many small, elegant components, from the delicate, mismatched porcelain tea cups and saucers to the classic white and brown sugar cubes served with tiny spoons. The restaurant obtains much of its teaware through donations, often from estates. “Instead of someone’s grandmother’s tea set sitting and collecting dust, a customer will donate to us to use instead,” said Ada. “They love seeing it repurposed, and then they are also able to come in and use those pieces when having tea here.”

In addition to afternoon tea, Asterisk also offers a full menu executed by Executive Chef Desmond Reid Jr., along with scrumptious desserts from pastry chef Christie Long, plus an extensive bar menu, including several cocktails that incorporate tea. Managing Partner Kathrine Dixon and Ada sampled countless teas and curated a specialized list of just over 20 for guests to choose from.

 “We were very intentional in selecting excellent, high quality teas that we knew people would love. When you come here, you’ll have an experience you’ll never forget,” Ada emphasized.

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