High time for high tea: A new restaurant on Old Town’s waterfront serves up wedding inspiration

High time for high tea: A new restaurant on Old Town’s waterfront serves up wedding inspiration

By Leslie Golden | lgolden@alextimes.com

“My husband and I have a culinary background. We met at the Culinary Institute of America in New York. We love cooking and baking. We love to be able to share our creations,” Deborah Kim, the co-owner of Lady Camellia at the Waterfront, said in a recent interview.

Prior to coming to Alexandria, Kim and her husband Han founded Macaron Bee in Georgetown in 2012. For several years, they served macaroons and other pastries. They added tea to the mix a few years later. When they sought a new location for a new venture, they fell in love with Old Town. The location at 229 Strand Street serves afternoon tea, macaroons, sandwiches, champagne and more.

Kim described the new location as a perfect fit.

“It’s been really amazing. It’s been such an honor,” Kim said.

Lady Camellia is open Tuesday through Sunday with varying hours. Kim said they hope to be a space for connection and celebration in the community. The Old Town site can seat up to 40 individuals for private events.

“For a smaller event, we have a room that can be closed off into a private section. We can accommodate up to 18 in that space. And we’re currently working on an outdoor seating section that will have a slightly different concept,” Kim said.

Tea, scones and sweets have long been quintessential cuisine for a luncheon to toast a bride. The elegant ambiance of Lady Camellia serves as an ideal spot to celebrate with close family and friends ahead of the big day.

Lady Camellia will also be serving up selections for younger clientele.

“That’s a different feeling. We’ve hosted lots of younger guests for their birthdays.

We do have options and offerings more to the taste for younger guests. We create everything we serve on site, so it’s all custom,” Kim said.

Revelers who wanted to celebrate England’s newest monarch with traditional tea and fare flocked to Lady Camellia the night before the coronation. They loaded up on tea and cake ahead of the early morning livestream from London.

“It was really busy!” Kim exclaimed.

Following the craziness of King Charles III’s coronation, Lady Camellia’s owners look with anticipation to the spring and summer season. With weddings and the accompanying celebrations ahead of those ceremonies, Kim is thinking ahead for ways to personalize the dining experience for customers.

“We’ll be updating our menu to go with the seasons,” she added.