Goodbye from Brew City Tea House

    Editor’s note:
    Brew City Tea House, located in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward, will soon close its doors. Jean Vitrano, owner of the business, wrote the following blog to her loyal customers.

    The path on this journey has been more than a learning experience. In my case it has been very enlightening. I have never owned a business before, and with my passion for tea, two years ago decided to bring that passion to Milwaukee. I feel good about the decision to close the doors to the tea house, although very hard.

    The reasons are many, but the biggest reason is the inability to do everything in a small business alone. After having to let my daughter Katie go from Brew City Tea late last year I have been trying to do everything alone. One person cannot run a business alone and do it good. Along with the economy problems, it is time for me to move on. My lease expires at the end of the year, and I need to be out by December 15th.

    As all of you know I have a huge passion for tea. I have enjoyed chatting with you about tea, and have learned from you about new teas and different traditions. I have made many friends while on Jefferson Street. I do believe that with a bit more one hour lunch breaks with some of you we could have solved the world’s problems. You will always be my friends, that will never change.

    I am not leaving the tea business, but actually moving on within the field. I will be working on taking Brew City Tea to a different level. Possibly by bringing tea to your doorstep with a Tea of the Month club, possible tea gatherings and more online information. I am working on a new newsletter format and website to allow blogging. In doing so I will be able keep you informed as to what is happening in the ever changing world of tea. I am also working on a survey that I will send out to my list of dedicated tea drinkers to find out exactly what you are interested in. I will also do some consulting for more restaurants. These are just some of the things that I will be focusing on in the future. At present though I will need to concentrate on closing down the best tea house in Milwaukee.

    I would like to thank you all for your continued support and friendship. I would also like to thank my husband for his belief in me and support of yet another dream and my kids for listening to me talk about tea, especially Katie for her help and support. My granddaughter Caela, for giving up "grandma time," I promise now that we will have time for tea parties. Others to thank: Landlord Tim for patience and guidance, Milwaukee Magazine, Ann Christenson for her support and Howie Magner for informing Milwaukee that we did have the best iced tea. Dawn Luken for supporting the fact that Brew City Tea does have the best pot in town! I need to also thank Cane Tim for his timeless stories and support since day one. Day one cannot go unrecognized without remembering Vic and Chris and how patronage turned into friendship. Beth for wanting to learn more about tea by being with us for every single tea tasting, along with some interesting lunches. Susan and Libbey, your patronage is one thing, but I have to thank you for helping out when needed. Who else in Milwaukee has customers that will dig in when needed? Thanks also to the folks at Dream Dance and Potowatomi for reaching out to the small business owner and making a difference. Kyle and Lindsey for supporting Brew City Tea at most all of our events and beyond. There have been many customers, I’m sorry I can’t name you all, for that I apologize, I couldn’t have done it without all of your support. Your interest and love of tea has made me realize that bringing tea to Milwaukee was a good idea. I have seen excitement when people walk into the shop, interest in learning more and for me that was an added bonus.

    Brew City Tea will be hosting two very talented women for Gallery Night and Day coming up next weekend (Oct. 17-18). I am working on getting music for Friday night and a crepe maker for Saturday. Please check our website events page for updates and information on our artists.

    My lease expires at the end of the year, possibly the doors will stay open until the end of November. I will let you know. In the meantime, please stop in for a potta.

    Be happy, it is another turning point on the path.

    With all said, I end with this quote:
    "Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves – slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future."
    – Thich Nat Hahn

    Sipping milk oolong,


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