A new coffee concept opened this past June and serving Kettering in central Dayton, Eclipse Coffee & Tea is a small family owned coffee shop with a pretty simple charm. The midnight-themed little shop looks unassuming from the outside, but once you sit down to give it a try, you’ll find it’s a pleasant place to linger, to try a unique cup of coffee and enjoy the small business ambiance. There are an infinite number of chains and corporte-feeling places along Wilmington Pike. It’s sort of an intangible charm; the kind you can’t feel until you set foot inside.
Most of Argo Tea’s 23 locations are packed in downtown Chicago, and wandering through this city, it almost feels like there’s one on every corner. The chain, based in this city, tailors its fancy coffee and tree products to the person on the go, and it’s spotted pretty exclusively in major cities. Argo’s business is based on six tenants (CommuniTea, DiversiTea, ChariTea, QualiTea, SustainabiliTea, and CreativiTea, as they are called) and its mission is to bring a drink which is not only tasty, but holistic as well. I like the idea.
The digs at 19 South Court Street have not been kind to businesses. GG’s Bubble Tea lasted only a year, and before that, 19 South Bar and Grill didn’t fare much better. Owner Dylan Armstrong, however, seems intent to remember lessons learned from the previous concept, and when The Dragon’s Cup opened in March 2012, it featured not only all of the menu of its former tenant, but also some creative new additions to make the business more versatile. In addition to the bubble teas, The Dragon’s Cup offers herbal teas of many varieties as well as some simple Asian dishes and treats from other local bakeries.
Brand new to the Athens area, GG’s Bubble Tea opened this past fall, replacing a bar at the same address. Its signature product is actually a Taiwanese beverage which has been creeping into American via small shops such as this one opening up in larger cities. The store owner, John Ballard told a local paper he feels Athens is the “perfect spot” for a new bubble tea store. College kids like those found at Ohio University are particularly open-minded, and some international students may be reminded of home.
A tea house with a modern twist isn’t your everyday fare. You don’t see one very often in Ohio. Right in the middle of some of Cincinnati’s fanciest shopping locales, Essencha’s main offering is a wide variety of white, green, black, herbal, and oolong teas. It’s got a cult following of die-hard tea drinkers who keep coming back. Complimenting these teas is a light menu of soups and sandwiches.