Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

December 2, 2013

TIME for tea

Cindy Jex returns home with business in Old City Hall

BY BILL WOLCOTT bill.wolcott@lockportjournal.com
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Cindy Jex, who grew up in lowertown, used to have tea parties with her grandmother Lorraine Wilcox Jex. The little girl liked to bake treats.

Cindy, who now has a thriving candy business on Townline Road in Barker, has returned to the heart of Lockport, opening the Old City Hall Tea Parlor at 2 Pine St. The new business shares the historical building with the Flight of Five Winery.

“Chocolate and wine go together,” the owner the Barker Chocolate Box said. Her dream has always been to have a tea parlor and she is happy to bring the Victorian experience, her candies and baked goods to her hometown.

“Grandma always had Red Rose tea and she had something baked all the time,” Cindy said. “She would make cookies or always have sweet bread. We would just kind of sit and had a our chitchat.” 

Why did Jex pick the Old City Hall for her Lockport adventure? “Location, location, location,” she said. “You’re right here smack in the middle of everything ... in the middle of all the action. ... It’s central. It will be nice in the summer with all of the different things around.  The wine trail is right here.”

The Old City Hall Tea Parlor is Jex’ newest adventure.

Joe and Rose DeRose of Grand Island, who have followed Jex from Barker where she opened business five years ago, enjoyed a tea parlor visit Saturday. The retired couple are looking forward to the activities surrounding Old City Hall in the spring and summer.

Jex offers high tea, low tea, spot of tea and children’s tea. High tea is a meal, with salad, scones, creams and jams, chocolates, sandwiches, glass of wine and assorted desserts. 

Low tea includes scones, creams and jams, chocolates, tea sandwiches and assorted desserts. A spot of tea includes dessert with hot tea.

Old City Hall Tea Parlor, which had its grand opening Wednesday, is open every day from noon until 7 p.m. 

Somehow, Jex also manages to conduct candy business Monday through Friday at the Main Place Mall in Buffalo, make cookies for Delphi and BonTon and produce 150 products. 

“I run to Buffalo and make candies all night long,” she said. “Basically, I’ve been on a roll with the business. We’ve gone to a lot of places.” (That includes the Paula Dean show at the Washington D.C. Convention Center.) 

Cindy has a married daughter, Megan in South Carolina, a son, Michael Perkins in Utica; and two grandchildren. She is helped by a tea party specialist and her niece, Tricia Daningburg.

“It’s a crazy world, but it’s fun,” Cindy said. “I do keep busy. I’m moving all the time.”