Monday, April 19, 2010

Tea with Friends - Tea for One

Recently I attended an afternoon tea with a couple of friends at a well known club in Toronto.  Having attended many such occasions before, I knew what to expect but was not prepared for what we experienced.
Let's start from when we sat down at our table.  It was set with all the plates and cutlery for a formal dinner, including a soup spoon.  Hmm, that was odd.  As we looked things over, we saw a bread and butter plate to one side with several packaged tea bags and also a carafe with hot water. 
I became a little distressed at the thoughts of the old tea bag in the teacup, whereas I am used to the finer art of tea made in a tea pot.  Chamomile seemed like a wise choice under the circumstances but low and behold, other table guests chose a black tea and desired milk and sugar.  No such luck!
Should I mention that the sandwiches were on the top tier where the sweets should have been?  Well, not to be totally negative about the tea, the food was good and the tiers promptly filled when they ran low.
Which brings me to the point that surely this club could have rented some teapots for the event, even if they were tea for one.  I received the charming pot and cup set below as a hostess gift from a dear friend and call it my grandma's travelling tea set for visiting family. 

Now the tea pot and cup set below came from a good friend who will be 90 years young this summer.  She knows how much I adore tea things and she thought she'd play a little joke on me with this gift.

Isn't this wild?  My friend thought I'd throw it out but as you can see, it is sitting on a beautiful silver tray right on my tea cart as my way of having the last laugh.

Afternoon tea was invented by the Duchess of Bedford in the mid 1800s.  To tide herself over for a very late dinner; she asked her maid to serve small sandwiches and cakes with her afternoon tea, and a new fashion was born. 

I'm joing for tea today:
Lady Katherine at Lady Katherine Tea Parlor
Wanda Lee at The Plumed Pen


  1. Hello Judith,
    What a wonderful post! Tea is indeed an art form and those of us who take it seriously are so disappointed when it is not served properly. I am certain I have seen that second tea pot before somewhere but I don't remember where. It is pretty wild, and oh so wonderful because it was gifted to you by your friend who has a delightful sense of humor. I am so happy to have you join me for Tea Time and I have added your link to my post. Thank you for sharing and I wish you a lovely week.


  2. Love the teapots! I love teapots! And I do like properly served tea.

  3. Judith, I enjoyed your post. Cute story about the funny lady teapot. I like the tea for one pot as well! Have a great week, Judith!

  4. I love those teapots, so much whimsy!...Christine

  5. Hi Judith, A travelling teapot, what a neat idea. So nice to have a teapot from such a wonderful friend, it will be a treasure forever. Take care:)

  6. Hi Judith
    What a wonderful post..and wow..what a whimsical tea pot..your friend is so amzing and has a fun heart! Yay!! Great spirited post! Happy tea..thanks for hopping over to mine too! Yay! Have a gorgeous week full of sparkles!

  7. Judith, your teapots are delightful...I'm sorry the tea party was NOT. Perhaps you should call the club in Toronto & educate them about the positioning of items on a tiered serving tray. I bet they haven't a clue & at the same time, you could suggest the use of proper teapots, too.

    I have long held that tea drinkers are a discriminated against minority. We are seldom offered our drink of choice first...its always "coffee,?". We rarely get boiling hot water & even more rarely get all the free refills that coffee drinkers are privileged to receive.

    I have several of the individual combination teapot + cup sets, which come in very handy. None are as fun looking as your gift from your very thoughtful friend, though!

  8. Judith, I so enjoyed reading your post. I know how disappointing it is to sit down to what one thinks is going to be a delightful afternoon tea, only to be disappointed. I don't have one of the combination teapots w/ cup, but have always thought them to be most clever. I'd chuckle every time I looked at your funny lady. I love a sense of humor and whimsy. I'd keep it out too!
    Thanks for sharing. I've added myself as a follower. Glad to find your blog.

  9. Loved seeing the delightful "Tea for One" pots and cups. I have one the my hubby bought for me that I will have to remember to post.

  10. I find more and more often you get a variety of teabags rathen than a pot of tea unless you are in a Japanese restaurant or a tea house. I'm not sure why, but my guess is that they are trying to hard to please everyone. No excuse for the tiered tray, however. Am I crazy or do you still eat from the bottom? Those tea for one pots are perfect for guestrooms, especially if they have access to an electric water pot. Thanks for your post and those great tea for one combinations.

  11. I was not surprised by your comments. Until recently most of the tea rooms here put the term "high tea" on their menus when they really should have had "afternoon tea". Some have changed that as they have gotten more educated. It seems a common mistake. It sounds like those folks need to read a few books and there are so many great books to profit from!

  12. Hello,
    I enjoyed your tea post today! Tea for one would be perfect for me. I enjoyed also hearing about how the afternoon tea first started. I hope you have a lovely rest of the week! Vicki

  13. Hi: I love that tea pot. It is so cute. Thank you for sharing it today! Blessings, Martha

  14. What a delightful post...that indeed was and odd tea I'd say too, but glad the food was good. I also didn't know how afternoon tea started but loved to read about it. Love your Funky tea pot and I have a few Tea for one pots that I enjoy at times!

    Happy Tea

  15. I loved hearing about your Tea experience! Yes, I agree the sweets should be on top! But some say they should be on the middle. I do my tiers by the size of my food for I do not want it to look off. lol I most always use the top for sweets. I love your teapots! Adore the whimsical teapot your 90 year old friend gave you! I can see a cute Tea done with this pot! Thank You So Much For Joining me for Tea Time Tuesday! I want to see a Tea with your Whimsical Pot, I just know it would be so fun to do a Tea with it!

  16. The teapot looks like if you rub it wishes will come true! I wanna chance...Joan


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