It’s the time of year when we enjoy being outside. The trees and flowers are in full bloom, the birds are singing, there’s a warm breeze and the skies are blue with white puffy clouds. It’s a perfect day to host an outdoor afternoon tea.
Whether you are having a party for 10 or for two, a garden is a lovely place to host it. Think of what you’d like your theme to be. Is it a fairy garden? Is it a children’s party? Is it a special friend you just want to share some time with? From there begin with a lovely table setting. Examples here, are a fairy garden with pieces of moss on the table for soft texture and color, or pretty tablecloth to bring the outdoors that extra special touch.
You might be surrounded by flowers in the location you have selected or, if not, you might want to add some flowers to your table. If you have access to a flea market you might find some inexpensive mismatched China tea cups and saucers or just the cups. Place one at each place setting with a small plant like an African violet inside as a gift to your guests. This can serve as the floral pieces decorating the table and will go home with your guests at the end of the party. Always remember you will need plenty of space for the China place settings flatware, teapots and all the delicious food you will be serving.
Depending on where you live you may wish to serve iced tea rather than hot tea. Your weather will determine that. I prefer hot tea when I’m hosting simply because I love using the pretty china cups and saucers. If you are serving iced tea you might select a pretty glass perhaps with a pedestal.
Scones with fresh fruit of the season, refreshing cucumber sandwiches, chicken salad sandwiches and ham and cheese sandwiches. For dessert a Victoria Jam Cake or fresh fruit on a meringue nest.
It’s important to select teas that pair nicely with your food flavors. I like to serve one tea with the savory courses and another tea with the dessert course. In this case I would recommend Orange Blossom 0olong https://ladolce-aiken.com/product/tea-oolong-tea-orange-blossom-oolong/ with the savory courses. This is a medium oolong tea that leans towards a black tea. It has a slight citrus flavor due to Jasmine petals being tossed in while the tea leaves are being processed. For the dessert course I would recommend Belgian Chocolate Rooibos tisane https://ladolce-aiken.com/product/tea-south-african-rooibos-belgian-chocolate/ . The Rooibos herb is from Africa and is considered their tea. This particular rooibos has tiny pieces of Belgian chocolate blended in. It is an excellent dessert tea.
I always encourage my guests to wear a hat to my tea events. Especially if you are hosting an outdoor garden party, a hat is the perfect complement to their outfits and protects them from the sun.
I always feel, when I’m hosting afternoon tea for friends, that I’m sharing what is to me, a special ceremony to show how special they are to me. I know your guests will feel special as well.
Cheers to a Cuppa,