The Tailored Tea in Latham stands out against the stores and offices on Troy-Schenectady Road as a mecca for tea, fine food, and history enthusiasts alike.
Before visiting The Tailored Tea to take photos for their website, I had no idea that the 1785 farmhouse –a local landmark steeped in Capital Region history– even existed. But once I learned it was there, it wasn’t hard to find. After getting off exit 6 on the Northway, I headed east for about two miles. With the address number in hand, I searched for the tiny little tea room I had envisioned, imagining that it was probably hidden away in a strip mall beside the road. But then suddenly a sign reading “The Tailored Tea” came into view and behind it, situated regally on a hill at the tip of Albany Airport property, stood the place I was looking for. Approaching the large, white farmhouse, which is framed by green trim and flanked by a wide front porch, I took the peaceful patch of property in in its entirety. Hardly believing I was still in Latham, I marveled at the easy way my eyes grazed across the open field behind the house; I noted high grasses, beautiful mature trees on the edge of the landscape, and a small outhouse in the back.
Once inside, I was greeted by Taylor, a warm, welcoming waitress with an bright smile. She offered me an apple raspberry iced tea and I began to look around. Within moments, I was met by Anita, the proprietor’s daughter who was happy to give a thorough tour of the house. As she showed me the three first floor parlors and two additional spaces upstairs that are available for private gatherings, she explained a bit of the history of the house. Much of what Anita shared is iterated below in a blurb taken from The Tailored Tea website:
œThe house served as the home of Hills’ family where they settled in to reap the benefits of the potent farmland in Watervliet after they’d migrated from Connecticut. By the onset of the 1800s, Hills became the Supervisor of the Town of Watervliet and his home, the Town Hall. In the 1820s, Hills’ son turned the farmhouse into a tavern, inn and post office which subsequently became the site of a scandal and mystery that enthralled the town residents. Purchased by the Albany County Airport in 1982, the farmhouse spent many years unoccupied and uncared for. Saved from demolition by the National Register of Historic Places, the farmhouse was deemed historic. The airport hired a historic preservation consultant and received a grant to restore the farmhouse to its original condition.
As I wandered around, sipping my iced tea, soaking in the history and the charming ambiance of the house, and taking photos, little ones decked out in sweet sundresses and khakis and ties began to trickle in. Anita and Annie, the proprietor had arranged a children’s tea party for me to photograph!
I had such a wonderful time “working” for Annie Misir and her daughter Anita. The serenely comforting charm of this teahouse is magnetic. I am very excited to return in a few days as a patron, as I have chosen this as a the place to host a ladies’ afternoon tea for my future in-laws who are in from England to attend my wedding. I am sure they’ll like The Tailored Tea just as much as I do!