I really wish being a lady who lunches was a paid gig because its a job I would totally take. Sadly it's not so I'm left with limiting my LWL type activities to Saturdays - Saturdays where I don't have a communitity service project or football game to attend mind you.
One of the ways I like to be a fake LWL is by going to afternoon tea. A pet peeve of mine is when it's referred to as high tea yet even the fanciest of restaurants do this, grr. High tea was back in the days evening meal eaten by the working class where low tea was the afternoon lady like production on mini sandwiches, scones and bite sized desserts we know today. So anyway, I'm kind of on a mission to visit every afternoon tea location within my driving distance. Back in August when Shaun and I had our Memphis Day we did tea at the Peabody and it was marvelous. I have since gone back with my family and they seemed to enjoy the experience but did not like all of the items, smh!
In September I went with a group of friends to Wisteria tea room in lakeland, tn. Wisteria set up a table with a pretty lace tablecloth and brought us each our own pot of tea. They had a very large selection of tea with delicious flavor combinations. For the first course we had a cup of soup, served in a tea cup, and scone. The scone was not my favorite flavor and was not as moist as the Peabody but still good. Sadly I seem to have deleted my picture of this course.
The second course was a tiered tray of sandwiches, fruit, and pasta salad. These trays are meant to be eaten from the bottom up. The only thing I did not enjoy during this course was the tuna salad, but I do not eat tuna salad so this is not a reflection on the restaurant.
For dessert, we were each brought our own plate of mini desserts, they were all yummy.
After tea Shaun took a group photo of the ladies present, several of which are Gamma Phis. Naturally, I wore a hat. I'm not really smiling in this pic because of a negative side effect to Botox I've discovered, but that's another post.
Tea was $24 per person with tax but not gratuity included. While I enjoyed this experience the Peabody at $27 including valet parking is the better value.
A few weeks after the group tea Shaun and I had a weekend getaway in Little Rock. Our gorgeous Victoria B&;B, The Empress, offered an afternoon tea so of course I couldn't resist.
We had our tea the Sunday afternoon before we returned home and had the mansion dining room to ourselves but were set up at an intimate table.
This tea was served by candlelight in two courses. The tea was a fruity house blend and delicious, we were sad they did not have any for sale.
The first course was different from other teas that I've had in that the sandwiches were warm. They were all very good but the Brie grilled cheese was our mutual favorite. I enjoyed the presentation with the flowers but opted not to eat mine.
We tried having our photo made together but the sunlight made this not possible. This is the most casual I have ever dressed for tea.
Dessert was also delicious and house made. I'm typically not a fan of merengue but it was good.
Since we had already stayed on the house for two nights we did not need a turn but I do believe it is included if one was to go for tea as a non guest . This tea was the priciest I've ever had at $45 per person. I understand this reflects the special effort the staff had to go through to prepare for us but The Peabody continues to be the best value.
On my tea bucket list is The Geapevine in Arlington , tn The Rosebriar in Eads, tn and Savanah tea house in Nashville. If you know of others within a few hours of Memphis please let me know. I'm also hoping to squeeze tea at the Ritz into a New Orleans trip in March.