Callicrates (callicrates) wrote,

The ritual of Afternoon Tea

I took a long weekend last week and went to Boston to visit dawntreader42 and another old friend from college. It was one of the best trips I've taken in recent years despite the insane decision to take it two weeks before a major paper deadline. Maybe because of it.

Among other happy occurrences, we had some of the best food I can remember.

Most of my friends turn out to be fairly avid coffee or tea drinkers; often both. Somehow I managed to miss both of those tastes. I drank a fair amount of peppermint tea one very cold winter at work but stopped for some unknown reason once it got warm. However, this trip was meant to be an adventure, when dawntreader42 suggested we go to tea as an event unto itself I said sure, why not?

It was a good call. The Swan Cafe at the Park Plaza Hotel does a wonderful afternoon tea. It takes at least two hours to do properly. They have a long list of excellent teas, none of which I am even remotely qualified to judge, and a series of little things to nibble on. Cranberry orange scones, little half-sandwiches with egg salad, chicken salad, turkey, smoked salmon and something I forget, then the desserts... mmm, the desserts. Truffles, pumpkin (?) bread, petit-fours and so on. Between all the munchies and the never-ending tea I was very full and very happy when we left.

I begin to understand why people make such a big event out of afternoon tea. It's so rare to take a couple hours to sit back, relax, and unwind. It isn't something I'd enjoy nearly as much alone -- friendly company makes a big difference -- but it's absolutely something I'd like to do again.

Outside of that, dawntreader42 may just have gotten me back into the habit of drinking tea each morning. Peppermint tea goes a long way toward waking me up and now has some wonderful memories associated with it.

That was just one of the weekend's adventures. Many are fit for posting and will probably make it here sooner or later. Stay tuned.

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