Our Story

Let me take a moment to introduce us.  We are Jeff and Allison Esguerra, the current owners of The Olde English Tea Room and Gift Shoppe since April 1, 2012. Jeff and I have moved to North Carolina from California in 2000.  Jeff has worked in the high tech industry for the past 35 years in RTP and other locations.  Our three dear sons Jeff, Noah, and Joey are now grown men living within driving distance of our home in Raleigh.  Our family and many other people have helped to renovate The Tea Room since 2012 and we are extremely grateful for all of the labor and sacrifice during this season of building. This Tea Room has a special place in our hearts as we see this restaurant as a haven from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  This is a place to come for celebrations as well as a quiet respite to catch up with old acquaintances.  We often say, “We are the 2nd happiest place on earth!”  It is our desire to provide a place where our guests feel the difference of this respite.  Great food, kind service, and a pleasant environment is our goal.
The Tea Room was originally opened in 1996 by the previous owners, Tom and Judy Wishart. This building, built in 1926, has seen many from the community that are considered friends.   Customers have celebrated birthdays, wedding showers, baby showers, anniversaries, graduation celebrations and special tea parties over the years.  Our customers are the sweetest customers in North Carolina and it has been our privilege to celebrate and host them at The Olde English Tea Room.
Since moving to North Carolina, I have spent time volunteering with churches, homeschooling my kids and working as an Administrative Assistant at a large local church.  After our children moved out of our home and Jeff had a job change, the question of how to see dreams fulfilled in our later years came into focus.  The purchase of the Tea Room fell into place and we started the process of renovating the building and business. It has been an amazing journey on which the Lord has had us!  We have learned so much through construction on the street (including the street closure for over 3 months), construction and closure of the downstairs Gift Shoppe for over 9 months, and the construction process upstairs to renovate the space into two apartment units. Our staff has been wonderful throughout the entire process of change and construction!  Our new website, party packages, catering menu, and new menu items have been supported and often suggested by them (take the Greek or Bacon and Cheddar Scone or the amazing house-made New York style Cheesecake, for instance).  We now have new menu items and we can now offer many gluten free selections.  Our Chef, Joe, is a blessing to us beyond words

Our Wait Staff Manager: Brant Boldon

Brant is originally from Mississippi where he graduated from Delta State with a Bachelors in Interdisciplinary Studies. He moved to Wake Forest in 2014 to pursue a Masters of Divinity in North American Church Planting from South Eastern Theological Baptist Seminary. He has worked with us at the Tea Room since his arrival in Wake Forest. His future plans involve returning to Mississippi to pursue a Masters of Business and then to pursue work in a church. You may have had Brant as a server? You would remember him as the one who asked you how he could be praying for you? He has a great big heart and enjoys reading, playing various instruments and singing.

Our Baker: Sue Harris

Sue was born and raised in Los Angeles, California.  She and her husband, Paul, their cat, Birdie (Ha-ha ?) and their dog, Emma drove in June of 2016 across county with their camper trailer relishing a slow journey to North Carolina.  Sue enjoys baking, gardening and camping.  Her next big adventure involves traveling in Europe.  Sue puts a “bit in love” in all of our tasty baking products!

Our Chef: Leslie Weslaski

Leslie was born in Wisconsin but has spent most of her life in Arizona. She has lived in Wake Forest for 4 years. Leslie came to the Olde English Tea Room with more than 30 years experience in the food service industry. She enjoys spending her free time riding her horse Lazaro through the beautiful trails of North Carolina. Leslie puts a lot of love and care into the delicious food we serve our guests each day.

Donna, John, and Ted are all co-owners of Vintage Attic, the antique store that occupies the Gift Shoppe in our basement.  These three represent more than 60 combined years of antique dealing at various locations on the East Coast.  The selections of items they carry are varied and wonderful.  You will find Donna, the head salesperson, to be very resourceful and educated in this arena. Be sure to stroll on downstairs to view the variety of items on display.