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Brewin’ Up Business!

Original Article:

Written By: Jack Jacobs

It’s tea time at a former consignment shop in Scott’s Addition.

T-Caf, Salon de Thé, a tea shop and café, opened last week at 2943 W. Marshall St.

Owner Theodore Akueson-Gannyi leased the 2,200-square-foot space last year and said the shop is inspired by similar establishments he visited in Paris — a cozy place for patrons to spend time in as they sip their tea.

“It’s not a take-away place. You come and sit down, order your tea and take your time to enjoy your tea,” he said.

T-Caf is a retirement project for Akueson-Gannyi, who spent his career working in finance and for oil companies such as Chevron and Shell before getting into humanitarian work at the United Nations. He moved to Richmond in 2015 and recently retired.

T-Caf offers 50 to 60 varieties of tea from countries such as India, Rwanda, Nepal and Japan. Teas range in price from $4 to $10. T-Caf also serves coffee and hot chocolate as well as snacks, cookies and crepes. The shop has five employees and seating for roughly 50 guests.

T-Caf’s location was once home to Leftover Luxuries, a consignment shop.

Akueson-Gannyi hopes to find customers among Scott’s Addition’s office workers, and the neighborhood has lured several new arrivals of late. Tahzoo, a digital customer relations firm, recently moved into the HandCraft building, one of the neighborhood’s largest commercial redevelopments. Mission Lane, a credit card startup, has lined up its new corporate headquarters in Scott’s Addition as well.

Looking toward the future, Akueson-Gannyi wants to incorporate sales of tea leaves that people can buy in the shop and brew at home. He’d also like to add an outdoor seating area to the shop and increase its tea options.

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