Hanna Cherrie’s Tearoom
The name Hanna Cherrie is such a happy, summery name for a Tea shop. This friendly, welcoming and very cultural little cafe in Stockbridge, Edinburgh has been devised and designed by Sheila Skelly.
The story behind the name is simply delightful.
Hanna Cherrie was the grandmother of a friend of hers, and when Hanna died three years ago, aged 98, Sheila was given a collection of granny’s tea cups which she had bought over the years from browsing second hand shops in Stockbridge.
These beautiful old vintage tea-sets began the inspiration for a traditional Tea Room. With half a dozen tables and comfortable, upholstered arm chairs, the decor is all about Cath Kidston-style, (but authentic) table cloths on which sit vases of fresh flowers; the walls are lined with book shelves as well as local art work for sale.
There’s a real literary mood in the air. Visitors are invited to take part in a paperback book swap, and a Book Club session takes place over coffee and cake on Tuesday mornings, 10 – 12 noon. Other novel ideas include English and Language classes with a private room available downstairs for a variety of meetings and events to bring people together.
The menu is extremely enticing, whether you call in for morning coffee, lunch or classic Afternoon tea. A giant cake stand holds various plates of home made cakes, (gluten and dairy free available) as well as fresh scones and jam. A great choice of herbal and speciality teas, such as a fragrant and refreshing Lemon balm, peppermint and fennel, Japanese Cherry tea, and Lady Jane Grey (earl grey with citrus). Tea of course is served in a pretty flowery cup and saucer from a mismatched teapot. Not a teabag in sight thank goodness.
I called in for lunch and sampled a very tasty Chickpea and Artichoke Salad: Sheila prepared the chunky, slightly spicy, hummus to order, (talk about fresh!), which was served with watercress, fat olives, cherry & sun dried tomatoes, a generous portion of artichoke and a thick slice of home made rye bread. This was a feast rather than a light lunch. Delicious!.
My salad was served on a lovely bright yellow plate, patterned with birds and blossom, sourced from the smart and sassy home design boutique, Anthropologie.
Other foody options being enjoyed at the next table were Roast Beef and blue cheese sandwich with red onion chutney, and a Turkey, avocado and Jarlsberg toasted panini – an ingenious combination. The menu also offers soup of the day, and platters of cheese and cured meats.
The ambience is all about relaxation – music on the sound track ranges from ethnic pan pipes to classic romantic American ballads.
Sheila is not only the innovative chef in the kitchen, she is also a professional Holistic Homeopath and Shamanic practitioner, working at Gorgeous Therapies next door.
The ethos of Hanna Cherrie’s reflects this joint venture of health and wellbeing, the therapies complemented by wholesome, natural organic food, home made cakes and herbal teas. What could be more relaxing than visiting Gorgeous Therapies for a haircut, a facial or relaxing massage, and then visit the tea room to chill out over a cup of tea and slice of cake or lunch while you read a good book from the tea room library.
On a shelf is a fine antique wooden clock which chimes the hour. It’s a charming sound which reminds one of traditional British Afternoon Tea.
“Stands the Church clock at ten to three, And is there honey still for tea”. Rupert Brooke: The Old Vicarage, Grantchester.
35 Hamilton Place, Edinburgh EH4 2DN tel. 0131 343 1152