A mobile tea party catering company
Like many notable ideas, it all started in a Manhattan apartment. After attending undergrad at NYU, Patricia Bradby, owner of Miss Priss Tea Co., worked in the city and gathered her friends for tea parties to trade the chaos of New York for community with one another.
Her curiosity led her on a vacation to Charleston, SC where she visited the only working tea plantation in North America, The Charleston Tea Plantation. She dreamed of opening a tea house there, but sadly, the timing was off.
Committed to an adventurous life, she moved to Malaysia – where her Mom is from – and became a bartender at a resort while she processed what her next step would be. While traveling around the globe, she noticed that afternoon tea was an important part of life and culture all over the world. This social tradition captivated her with its ability to slow people down, so they could experience stillness and face-to-face connection with others.
Spend less than an hour with Patricia and you’ll likely hear her share an anecdote about her family. She says their close ties have been built over spending intentional time together. When she was growing up, it was usually around the dinner table at her Grandma’s house every Sunday after church.
Charmed by wanderlust, but saddened by the separation from home, she moved back to her hometown of New Kent, Virginia, and eventually landed in Richmond. Keeping with her NYC traditions, she started throwing tea parties for fun again and began market research to see if it would be wise to open a tea room here. Instead of diving head first into brick and mortar, she decided to start small and launch a tea party catering company.
While living in New Kent, she worked part-time at the Berkeley Plantation in Charles City and after mentioning her idea to the manager, she was asked to cater their tea parties for Historic Garden Week. In order to do that, she would need to formally create Miss Priss Tea Co. The name, Miss Priss, is a tribute to her Mom, Priscilla, and its purpose is to bring afternoon tea back to modernity.
As irony would have it, around the same time, she became friends with a new restaurant owner in New Kent who liked her concept, believed in its potential, and let her use his commercial kitchen to get her business up and running.
Fast forward a few years, and you’ll find Patricia partnering with other local business owners to host pop-up tea parties all over Richmond. Most recently, a global tea tasting at Richmond’s first coworking space for women, The Broad, and a Mother’s Day Tea at Whisk bakery. At her events, you’ll see Patricia’s family members pitching in and likely sit next to someone you don’t know. And that’s part of the plan, to bring different generations together to foster conversations that begin around a common interest – tea.
What’s next for Miss Priss? She’s working on packaging a tea blend of her very own and hopes to create a line of tea-related products so people can easily create these life-giving, relationship building experiences on their own.
More about Patricia…
Favorite Richmond restaurant: Sabai
Food is important because: It’s more than just sustenance. It’s a medium of creativity and expression. It can provide joy and comfort. It brings people together.
Favorite meal: Endless plates of nigiri. Living in Tokyo spoiled me. I’m still on the hunt for where to find high quality sushi in Richmond.
Follow Miss Priss Tea Co. here…
- Instagram: @missprissteaco
- Facebook: Miss Priss Tea Co.
- Website: https://www.missprisstea.com/