The Mad Hatter may have been delightfully delirious, but he was also spot-on about the glory of a tea party. Afternoon tea requires you to stop everything midday to sip on hot aromatic drinks and snack on adorable miniature foods in a luxurious atmosphere. Sounds like a heavenly daydream that we should all try to make into a reality whenever we can.
With that in mind, we gathered our favorite spots for afternoon tea (below) and created the Tea Party in a Gift Box, which has everything you need to celebrate the joys of unplugging from the workday and putting those pinkies out in the comfort of your own home. Simply invite a few ladies or gents over and enjoy the warm and intoxicating spices of Bellocq Tea Afghan Chai, perfectly steeped through a beautiful brass strainer or a paper filter, as you nibble on Whimsy & Spice Brown Sugar Tea Cookies. We’ll even provide the DIY paper tassel banner, thanks to the playful minds at Flair Exchange. The Mad Hatter would be mighty envious.
7 Lovely Spots for Afternoon Tea
What could be finer than treating yourself to gourmet teas, impeccable pastries, and truly decadent settings while you’re traveling for the holidays? Not a thing, which is why we’ve gathered some of the world’s best places to experience Afternoon Tea just for you. All we ask is that you tell us all about it, and enjoy every minute.
- Claridge’s, London, England (pictured above): For more than 150 years, this London institution has been the place to go for a spot of tea … and maybe a sweet or two.
- The Grand Empress Hotel, Victoria, British Columbia: The hotel takes tea very seriously, and has its own blend of Empress tea created just for its service.
- The Rose Garden Tea Room at The Huntington, San Marino, California: Enjoy freshly baked scones and a hot cup of tea in a setting that overlooks three acres of rose gardens. You can thank us later.
- Boston Public Library Courtyard Restaurant, Boston, Massachusetts: You read it right. We invite you to enjoy a variety of finger sandwiches (smoked salmon, crème fraîche, lemon and brioche, perhaps?) and a cup of tea in a library.
- Queen Mary Tea Room and Restaurant, Seattle, Washington: Victorian elegance is combined with a tough of whimsy to create a unique spot for tea and unforgettable moments.
- The Drake Hotel, Chicago, Illinois: Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth sipped tea here, and what’s good enough for royalty …
- Lady Mendl’s Tea Salon, New York City, New York: This wonderful city has several lovely spots for tea, but this one holds a special place in our hearts, with its divine five-course tea service.
Photos taken and styled by Heidi Murphy/White Loft Studio and finediningindian
Eat Boutique discovers the best small batch foods by boutique food makers. We share recipes, maker stories and city guides to eating boutique. We host tasting events and markets for food makers, cookbook authors and food fans. We craft seasonal, regional gift and tasting boxes and sell individual items that you can order in the Eat Boutique Shop.
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