Time for Tea

Tea Party

For the last 13 or so years, I have been looking at, dusting, moving and rearranging my great-grandmothers tea cups. No matching set here, just random pieces I imagine broken up over the years either literally or given to other people. Told to keep them because I had to (or I may as well be dead) by the family members that insist that these things stay in the family, although no one ever, ever uses them.

Heirloom dust collectors.

I’ve given up on a china cabinet since living in the cottage…I don’t need to store fine china, nor display it. Practicality, people. I don’t have room for you if you’re sitting around catching cobwebs.

So this weekend I was digging in the back of one of my kitchen cupboards and moving around these teacups for the 9,817th time, and decided I will now use them. So dainty and delicate, I have a rough history with fragile things. But they are not doing anyone any good hiding out with the salad tongs. I decided to bring them out and discover their beauty once again.

I like tea. I like pretty things. Let’s party.

Tea PartySo without a blink I threw my first “Afternoon Tea” party. With myself.  I picked the fanciest cup, brewed a pot and made finger sandwiches. I wondered what Sally and Gail on Coronation Street were doing.  I felt oh so regal on a plain Jane Sunday afternoon. I was thinking to myself, what an inexpensive, easy and cool way to get together and entertain. Next time I’m inviting people.

I’m totally going to do this more often. People or no people. No excuse needed to use beauty. Teacups were meant for using. I think.

Going Out for Tea

Have you been for tea in a tea room? It’s fancy fun.

I most enjoy it when there is Champagne involved, but just tea and food is great too. Something about those finger sandwiches with the crusts cut off are delectable! I have no idea why. Scones and Devonshire cream! Yes please. When the hell else do you eat these things? (If you eat crust-less sandwiches and Devonshire cream on the regular, we need to get closer).

It’s a super fun afternoon activity to catch up with girlfriends…or throw the dreaded *hack* bridal shower. (I can only stomach a bridal shower with Champagne and Devonshire cream. Darling.).

Here in the Toronto area, I think hands down the best place for tea is the Windsor Arms Hotel. Book early. They fill up. I’ve heard The Old Mill has a good one too, but haven’t been by to check it out. Although pricey it’s a nice treat.

So all this tea-ing around had me fascinated with how this afternoon tea custom started and all the proper etiquette. I found this:




And finally, if you are looking for a reason to get out, cluck like hens with your friends and maybe wear a fancy hat, I give you the health benefits of doing so:



What are your tea customs? Where are your favourite places to have afternoon tea?

Drinking tea from a fancy cup,

Brooke Simmons



2 thoughts on “Time for Tea

  1. You know, Brooke, I wasn’t going to comment…because…you know, guys don’t drink tea. But your post was great…funny and educational at the same time.

    Also, I do have experience with afternoon tea at one of the “fancy pants” tea rooms. I worked at the Four Seasons Hotel in Yorkville for about 6 years. For part of that time, I worked in the Lobby Bar (aka Tea Room on Sundays). Let me tell you, I saw my share of the afternoon tea crowd. It was great to see 3 generations of ladies sitting with their fancy hats enjoying tradition (and dropping a couple hundred dollars!).

    Lastly, with regards to the tea cups (aka dust collectors), we have a collection also. My wife inherited her grandmother’s mish mash of cups and saucers. All very nice in their own way. Also, we received an antique tea cart picked up at an auctino. We had it refurbished…it’s solid walnut…looks amazing.

    Anyhow…that’s it for me! Oh…my favourite is Darjeeling with a little milk.

  2. Thanks for the comment, Tim! The afternoon tea crowd at the Four Seasons must’ve been some decent entertainment!

    And glad you’re guy enough to admit your tea habit.

    Cheers…(in fancy cups).


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