Now open: Trailside Café and Tea Room

A tiny café with a big menu just opened up on the Frisco Trail. The Trailside Café and Tea Room caters to serious tea lovers, big and small appetites and our growing bike/pedestrian culture in Fayetteville. Located in the old practice spaces on Center Street (formerly Razors Salon), this café offers a full menu of teas, tisanes, elixirs, and frivolous concoctions such as root beer floats and Boston Coolers (rainbow sherbet and ginger ale).

The Trailside Café is open seven days a week and located at 546 W. Center Street. The hours are very convenient for Fayetteville heathens looking for a Sunday bite to eat (noon to 7pm Saturday AND Sunday), 10am-4pm Mon-Tues, and 10am-7pm Wed-Fri. There is limited parking, but drivers can also park in the municipal lot on Dickson and take the trail a mere block.

For anyone who has ever been in the hangar-like building that Fayetteville bands have practiced in since time immemorial, the Trailside is like the second-to-last scene in The Neverending Story where the world is new, bright and clean (minus luck dragon). Lots of plants, open windows, soft music and framed pictures of real and fictional people enjoying a cup of tea. A friend remarked on the experience that it was like going to a “hipster Country Club”.

While that’s a wry way of putting it, the surroundings hold none of the trappings of a stuffy dinner room, or even the pretension one might assume from the term “tea room”. You order at the counter and seat yourself. Side items such as boiled eggs, hummus, and toast run cheap and delicious. Vegetarians can go crazy with a menu full of choices, and even vegans will have luck with most of their made-daily, from-scratch soups. I had their special salad with Stilton blue cheese, egg and dill tea sandwiches, and a pot of white tea. My lunch companions finished off their Butternut Squash Curry soup and homemade bread before the tea cooled.

For those whose ethical concerns don’t obscure the menu, try the Pot Roast Bowl with French bread, tuna salad with apples, walnuts and raisins, or a cup of the daily soup with a Smoked Turkey & Mango tea sandwich (crusts trimmed off!) Expect a full meal with tea or coffee to cost under $10, at the most.

I’ve eaten at the Trailside Café twice since its opening last Monday and I’m delighted by the range of its menu and the whimsical atmosphere. Stay tuned for brunch hours!