There are plenty of coffee shops in downtown Phoenix. There are coffee shops for coffee nerds, a coffee shop for bikers, coffee shops for creative types, and even a coffee shop with a menu entirely en español. Basically, there's a coffee shop for pretty much every kind of coffee drinker, not to mention a coffee shop that's also known for serving high-quality loose-leaf teas.
So, when we heard of a new coffee shop in downtown Phoenix, we couldn't help but wonder what clientele this place could hope to capture that hadn't already found its caffeine-filled home. And with one visit to The Teapot, located at 818 North Fifth Avenue, the answer became clear.
Technically, The Teapot bills itself as a "family-friendly coffee shop." But with a business model that includes a $2 per-child fee for the upkeep of a giant backyard play set, it seems the real key to this spot's success isn't so much families, but kids.
Which isn't to say there's nothing for grown-ups to like. The Pinterest-worthy decor, including white subway tiles, potted succulents, and adorably-messy handwritten menus, is clearly meant to appeal to adults — as is the menu of coffee and espresso-based drinks including standard options such as drip coffee, Americanos, lattes (flavored or not), cappucinos, and the like. And while the food menu of sweet and savory scones, crumpets, and quiche might make you think this is an English-inspired adult destination for afternoon tea, the grownup-friendly food menu is also counterbalanced by a kid-friendly one that includes goldfish crackers, fruit cups, and chocolate milk.
During our visit, we tried a nicely-balanced bottle of freshly pressed juice ($7) along with a savory cheese and bacon scone ($4.75). Together they made for a nice, light breakfast, which we enjoyed while sitting inside The Teapot's busy main room along with at least a half dozen kids (and one particularly curious and shirtless toddler who darted in from the play area outside on several occasions).
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Though there were at least two other tables of child-free adults, the vast majority of The Teapot's clientele, understandably, consisted of adults with at least one — though most of the time, more than one — tyke in tow. The kids seemed perfectly happy to play in the shop's toy-filled "kids corner" or to head outside to the backyard, and the adults seemed happy the kids were occupied.
(It's only fair to mention that even for a adult, the play house at The Teapot is pretty temping. It's an giant, two-story playground complete with a slide surrounded by shaded picnic tables and grass for lounging.)
So, your opinion of The Teapot will most likely directly correlate to your fondness for children. It's the undeniably perfect coffee shop for kids or adults who have them — and a one-of-a-kind coffee experience for those without.