When Gidgette Moshier started to look beyond her teaching career, she and husband, Ken, envisioned a dream to open an English tea room. Gidgette, from an entrepreneurial family, and Ken understood the commitment, drive and long hours required to launch and sustain a business. What they didn’t know, however, were all the ins and outs involved in getting a food and liquor business off the ground.

The Moshiers’ love traveling, enjoy all kinds of tea and are enthralled with tea rooms. They began investigating this idea almost two years ago. They contacted owners of other tea rooms and it was while Gidgette was reviewing information on the Small Business Association website (SBA.gov) a popup appeared asking if she wanted to contact SCORE. “SCORE,” she thought. “What’s that?” She clicked, filled out the request for a mentor and then began the journey to turn their dream into a reality.

My Successes: 

The English Garden Tea Room did a soft opening on July 13. They then worked all the kinks out of the operation and did not begin any advertising in the newspaper and on radio until mid-September. Ken Moshier is an engineer, so their combined skills, along with Dick’s expert mentoring, cover the gamut of running the business. When you visit you will also meet daughter, Kristen Yarema, so this is a true family venture.

Some of the special fare that the English Garden Tea Room offers is a traditional, hearty English breakfast. Lunch selections are a variety of salads and sandwiches and dinner provides such delightful dishes as Bangers and Mash and Shepard’s Pie, and, of course, there’s the high tea served at either 2 or 4 p.m. There are plans to expand the menu as well as their catering services as time goes on.

Through SCORE team mentoring, the English Garden Tea Room is working to provide appetizers for the Prescott Winery on Alarcon St. and the Winery supplies their local wines that are served at the tea room. Once the Moshier’s are comfortable with the function and flow of the restaurant they will begin looking for another Arizona city to open their next tea room. “We couldn’t have done it without Dick’s guidance,” said Gidgette, “and thanks to him, our grand opening is Oct. 9 and we are ready.”

How SCORE Helped: 

The Moshiers participated in SCORE’s Business Planning Workshop. This is a five week commitment held on Tuesday evenings at Yavapai College. This was, “Invaluable,” said Gidgette, absolutely invaluable. I keep my book and refer back to my notes when situations come up. That was a major part; I had to go through those classes and that helped develop the ideas. Working though the mission statement, working through the vision, helped us expand our concept to include everyone, not just ladies.”

What's Great About My Mentor?: 

Dick Milon, in addition to his volunteer work with SCORE, is still active as a hospitality consultant and conducts management skills workshops. Dick’s career has been in hotel management, restaurants and also with contract food service where he was employed in management by Aramark, an international company providing services in 21 different countries.

Through SCORE team mentoring, the English Garden Tea Room is working to provide appetizers for the Prescott Winery on Alarcon St. and the Winery supplies their local wines that are served at the tea room. Once the Moshier’s are comfortable with the function and flow of the restaurant they will begin looking for another Arizona city to open their next tea room. “We couldn’t have done it without Dick’s guidance,” said Gidgette, “and thanks to him, our grand opening is Oct. 9 and we are ready.”

Owner, Gidgette Moshier and Mentor, Dick Milon