Tea Tree Crêperie now at The Summit
Kingston fave gets second wind
With new staff, a new location and a seemingly new lease on life, Carrie ‘Quizz’ Sigurdson, is happy to introduce the second wind of her business, Tea Tree Crêperie, at The Summit in New Kingston. For well over a decade, Tea Tree has been one of...
With new staff, a new location and a seemingly new lease on life, Carrie ‘Quizz’ Sigurdson, is happy to introduce the second wind of her business, Tea Tree Crêperie, at The Summit in New Kingston.
For well over a decade, Tea Tree has been one of Kingston’s most famous breakfast cafés. Though basking in the warm glow of their success, last year was a difficult one for Tea Tree, when video of an altercation between management and an employee went viral online.
While recalling the situation, Tea Tree’s usually effervescent boss says she had to take a step back to heal from the trauma caused by the incident and the backlash that came from it.
She told Food, after terminating the waiter’s employment at Tea Tree, their interaction devolved into a physical fight when she says he refused to leave the premises.
“It was a lot, my nose was broken and my face was black up and bloody. It was bad but that’s why we closed to get our heads together and just [regroup].”
She continued, “I had to put the social media down very quickly because really I can’t base my feeling and emotions on what people are saying online anyway. It was bad for my mental health and I’m usually not affected by anything. But that one did me bad; But I’m good now.”
While the incident played a factor in their relocation, Quizz says they were happy to step into a new space to address some of the challenges that they previously had to contend with.
“So at 80 Lady Musgrave Road, the parking was such an issue; pretty much, families and friends were coming out on Saturday and Sundays. With Summit now, it’s every day of the week. We open at 7 a.m. because we expect a lot of suits and ties and young doctors and lawyers and the future of Jamaica, not just the young people but everybody of course. But Summit is being built into a business lifestyle campus. So we’re there from the ground up with Summit House. Right above the bar is Tea Tree so it’s like a match made in heaven already,” she said, with a laugh. “It’s kind of a completely different vibe and we love it.”
Looking back at their many years in operation, Quizz told Food one of her shining memories will always be their opening day.
“Opening day at Hillcrest was December 10, 2011. Those days we were the only crêperie opened in Jamaica and as far as everyone was concerned, we selling [were] shoes ‘cause you know, ‘crep’,” she said, referring to the popular Patios phrase for sneakers. There was line up out the door and down the stairs the day that we opened. That was a big one.”
With Quizz’s mother Maree still leading the charge as executive chef of the operation, Quizz says she is happy to be partnering with Summit officials like Nadya Bryce and Dwayne Anderson to give long-time supporters a taste of the old Tea Tree Crêperie, while slowly introducing new innovations.
“We’re just getting started, we’re just getting into the rhythm. What’s so special about Tea Tree is that we’ve had pretty much the same menu for like a dozen years and it just works right. But we will be adding stuff to it, just let us get settled, find the rhythm and then we will expand just like Summit. Evolution, that’s it.”
She continued, “It’s really just that every new beginning comes from some other beginning and that’s just what I love to say, and this one is Tea Tree x Summit for life.”