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Faith Stewart-Gordon

January 1, 2019

1995 – New York City

Faith Stewart-Gordon owned and operated The Russian Tea Room for 29 years, until she sold it in 1996 to Warner LeRoy, flamboyant owner of Tavern On The Green in New York City (and, formerly Maxwell’s Plum). The Russian Tea Room will reopen in October 1999 after being rebuilt from the ground up. Faith, who is a consultant to the new RTR, has just finished a memoir, “The Russian Tea Room, a Love Story”, to be published by Scribner in October, just in time for the RTR reopening. Born in Spartanburg, SC, Faith Burwell attended the “Cherub” program at Northwestern University as a high school junior. She later won an acting scholarship there, studied acting with Alvina Krause, and won two acting awards. Faith toured in “New Faces of 1952” and has played roles both on and off Broadway. In 1955 she met Sidney Kaye, the same year he became sole owner of The Russian Tea Room. They married in 1957. After the Kayes’ daughter Ellen was born in 1959, Faith began to spend more time at the restaurant and found it increasingly fascinating. When Kaye died in 1967 Faith took on the challenge of The Tea Room and started writing and recording her own radio commercials, giving birth to the now-famous descriptive “Six minutes and twenty-three seconds from Lincoln Center and slightly to the left of Carnegie Hall.”