Pin It

Two for Tea? 

Side Dishes: Another Space for Sipping

The demilitarized zone that used to be Burlington's Army Navy store is in the midst of a dramatic transformation. The location used to be B-town's primary source for butterfly knives and mace, but its new incarnation - as Sapa's Coffee & Tea - offers customers "bubble tea," Birnn truffles and demitasse cups filled with strong coffee.

Owner Khanh Tran, who says that the café will be open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. beginning later this month, has never owned a food-related business before; her last two jobs were at a bank and a hospital. But she decided to try brewing when she realized there was nowhere in the area to get Vietnamese-style coffee. In addition, she plans to carry around 50 varieties of loose-leaf tea.

Asked about her business's proximity to the well-established Dobrá Tea, Tran says, "I think that the style is different, definitely," noting that Vietnam is "a country of tea."

How do the folks at Dobrá feel about the competition? Manager Andrew Snavely says that both the staffers and customers are curious about Sapa's. "I think that it's a little close by," he admits, "but mixing coffee and tea under the same roof is not the same experience; it's not a tea room. The smell of coffee really overpowers the aroma of the tea."

In any case, Snavely's not worried: "We're pretty full all day, every day. We're outgrowing our space." Plus, he's pretty sure that Dobrá's "extras" will keep 'em coming back, including the eclectic light fare, an ever-growing selection of chocolates and pastries, and events such as musical performances and "tea classes."

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Pin It

More by Suzanne Podhaizer

About The Author

Suzanne Podhaizer

Suzanne Podhaizer

Contributor Suzanne Podhaizer is an award-winning food writer (and the former Seven Days food editor) as well as a chef, farmer, and food-systems consultant. She has given talks at the Stone Barns Center for Agriculture's "Poultry School" and its flagship "Young Farmers' Conference." She can slaughter a goose,... more


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Seven Days moderates comments in order to ensure a civil environment. Please treat the comments section as you would a town meeting, dinner party or classroom discussion. In other words, keep commenting classy! Read our guidelines...

Note: Comments are limited to 300 words.

foodie poll

How do you feel about eating GMO foods?

  • I don't understand what the fuss is about. I eat them and I'm fine.
  • As long as they're FDA-approved, I don't mind consuming them.
  • GMOs are in most staple foods, so I'm resigned to eating them.
  • I wish they were labeled so I could make informed choices about when to eat them.
  • I'm concerned about potential long-term health effects of consuming GMOs, which haven't yet been studied.

View Results

Latest in Food News

Recent Comments

Social Club

Like Seven Days contests and events? Join the club!

See an example of this newsletter...

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2016 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So Champlain St Ste 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Website powered by Foundation