TNT Diner

Now open: Olive Branch Cafe and Tea Room in Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square

Terry Waller’s dream for a much larger space for her cafe and tea room came true Saturday when she opened her Olive Branch Cafe and Tea Room at Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square.

This is the second time in three years she’s moved the Olive Branch. It first opened in May 2012 at South 12th and Proctor streets before moving to downtown Tacoma in October 2013.

The Freighthouse Square space is better suited to what she ultimately wanted to create: a cafe serving lunch Monday through Saturday, a Sunday reservation-only high tea service, and, eventually, a wine bar with dinner service. She’ll accomplish all that with the new 1,000-square-foot kitchen and a space that will be ideal for private parties.

Her daily lunch menu will remain the same, with cafe sandwiches, soups and salads. Expect to see a few new Southern menu items, including gumbo and Southern desserts.

She plans to expand her tea service, too. She’ll offer light tea service for walk-in diners, but the real deal high tea service will happen Sundays and will require reservations. She’ll have tiered sandwich and dessert trays and a broader selection of teas.

She’s taken over the long-vacant space previously occupied by Boxcar Grill at the west end of Freighthouse Square. Find Olive Branch Cafe and Tea Room at 2501 E. D St., Tacoma; 253-330-6511 or

More tea: Read my recent guide to South Sound tea rooms, steep shops and loose leaf tea stores at