Afternoon Tea at St. Regis Hotel NYC

It was 3:45pm on Halloween Eve, the day before my birthday, the weather chill with a crisp cool breeze, one perfect for afternoon tea. The dress code elegant casual, the decor — very luxurious, with ancient paintings, pillars with gold plated trimmings, and glamorous chandeliers, one fit for royalty, a Queen on her “almost birthday.”

You walk in and you’re seated in the epicenter of the hotel, “Astor Court,” ceilings surrounded by paintings, the lighting subtle, table setting modern but quaint, with tasteful gold accents. The server provides you with the menu and you have two choices of an afternoon tea experience “Lady Astor Tea” or “Caroline’s Tea.”

Me and my guest chosed both tea experiences each very different. The small plates included belgium sugar and raisin scones, cucumber dill sandwiches, marinated shrimp, caviar, smoked salmon, and crab salad. There were so many little bites which were enough to keep us both full! My choice of tea was Darjeeling while my guest had a Tropical Oolong.

Darjeeling
Tropical Oolong

The Darjeeling had a bold fruity flavor and provided a burst of energy that I needed, while withthe Tropical Oolong tea you immediately taste the hint of passionfruit with a hint mango enough to give off a sense of relaxation and ease. Both teas loose leaf and served hot with there very own tea kettles.

In it all, it was the best Birthday gift ever! I had an AMAZING time. The staff were polite and the ambiance was perfect for afternoon tea. I didn’t want to spoil all the deets on the place, there are other surprises I would like you to witness on your on — that is if you are ever in The NYC area. 😉

Tea Anecdote: Fall Season’s Lemon Ginger Tea

Interesting Surprise..

As the weather starts to get cold, there’s nothing like a hot cup of tea to keep us warm. Not only do we want tea to heat us up during the fall season, we also want fall-like flavors. As we kicked off October, I was introduced to Dr. Robert’s Lemon Peppermint Ginger. Prior to this tea experience, I’ve had just lemon ginger tea and I was use to the spicy ginger and sour lemon taste. However, when my mother provided me with this new blend with added peppermint leaves, it was to die for!  Dr. Robert’s tea blended all three flavors (lemon, peppermint, and ginger) with sugar kane as an additive, nicely proportion so that you are able to taste every flavor. Each unique flavor compliments each other making it such a great cup of tea to start your morning.

Hmm… A possible trend…

Literally, two weeks later I head to the grocery and I casually walk down the tea aisle and I come across Celestial tea’s “Jamming Lemon Ginger.”  I immediately placed the box in my basket. I said to myself, “this is a sign! What’s with the lemon ginger!” Again, another lemon ginger tea became my first cup of tea in the morning, enough caffeine to kick start my morning.

Ok, Now this is weird…

Then as if it couldn’t be more coincidental, on my way to work I run into a cute cafe called Lucid Cafe in New York City selling their own “homemade honey lemon ginger tea.” I had to stop and try it. And it was AMAZING! Organically made with real ginger and lemon chunks with natural honey. This large cup of tea was big enough to awaken my senses and keep me rejuvenated.

Not a bad habit…

I would say these occurrences were purposeful. This is because Lemon Ginger tea has tremendous benefits.  For the season it’s not too bad of a drinking habit, it is good for cold and flu symptoms, reduces fever, aids digestion, regulate blood sugar, soothe pain, increase hair health, and has been seen as a calming and relaxing tea. Granted, you might not run into a my many happenings with lemon ginger tea but I say it’s worth a try.

Tea Review: Tea Sanctuary UK – Red Rooibos Tea “Carpe Diem”

Flavor: Today’s tea review is dedicated to Tea Sanctuary UK’s Red Rooibos tea called “Carpe Diem.” The red rooibos tea or red tea was married with pineapple and strawberry pieces and coconut flakes with flavors vanilla, hazelnut and almond.

As a first time red rooibos tea taster and drinker, I must say at first sip you fall in love with the vanilla and almond flavor. It’s burst of flavor is one that makes you feel all warm and cozy inside. The red rooibos is unselfish to the other flavors, it actually compliments the other flavors really well. As for red rooibos itself, it has a flavor similar to cinnamon, strong yet delightful like most rooibos tea.

Red Rooibos tea with rock sugar 

Temperature: 175 degrees Fahrenheit

After Effect: Red tea has a very relaxing after effect as well. It makes sense why it’s considered to bring down stress levels.

Benefits: Red Rooibos has many benefits like eczema, asthma, bone health, insomnia, cardiovascular health, skin care, and prevents kidney stones.

Overall: Great tea to start your morning. It’s smell and taste is definitely one that will awaken the senses.

Tea Party Games

Tea Party Games

After everyone was settled, we took to a few tea games. Our first game was “Don’t Spill the Tea.”

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We separated tea guests into two teams each with a full cup of water. Game rules required each team to pass the the tea cup to their team member and walk about 12 feet from where they were standing and back without spilling any of their tea (water).

Team members were to pass the tea cup to each team member until the last person on their team completed their walk. The team with the most tea (water) in their cup won!

Deliberation time was hard. Both teams did really a good job not to spill any tea. However, there could only be one winner and that was the orange tea cup team!

Our tea guests loved it!

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Next up was our tea hat contest. However, it wasn’t your simple tea hat contest. Contestants had to show off their hats down a “runaway.” You first you needed to come up with your show name, you have to be creative. Then you need to pick your song and strut down the runway.  All our tea guests were AMAZING!  They showed so much character and charisma.

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Although we could only have one winner, we gave each contestant a superlative and our grand prize went to “Lady Lilac.”  Isn’t she stunning?!

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Overall, we had a blast! Making it one of my most memorable moments with tea. Reliving this event through these photos does motivate me to have another one. I also hope it inspires you to have one with your friends as well.

 

 

 

 

 

The Tea Party

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It was a cool summer day in July, a Sunday, skies looked gloomy at first, with a nice breeze.  What seemed to be a gloomy morning turned out to be a glorious afternoon for some tea.  Tea guests arrived promptly at 2pm (invitation via paperless post) ready to try all that the tea party had to offer.  Below gives a gist of the vibes and the ambiance of the fabulous tea party. Hopefully it provides you with some ideas for your next tea party.

The Table Setting 

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Each table setting had it’s own color scheme. We wanted tea guests to embrace the colors of each cup, plate, charger, fork, and teaspoon. Each table was complimented by a bouquet of flowers which accentuated the tea ware placed on the table.  We also provided fans for tea guests for added decor.

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Additives on the table were Belgium rock sugar and honey sticks. The intent was to have tea guests taste the tea for its organic flavors and not be so distracted by their sweeteners.

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Tea / Savories / Dessert Menu

It was a summer day in July,  tea tasters needed refreshing teas that would hydrate and cool them down. So I started the day with Tazo’s Passion Tea mixed with fresh lemonade. Right next to it was Teavana’s Raspberry Limeade.

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For those that wanted hot tea, I made Teavana’s pineapple kona pop with flowering pineapple as well as a separate kettle with Teavana’s peach tranquility.

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In between the various tea tastings,  I first served a cajan shrimp cocktail to start, followed by turkey, ham, and roast beef croissant sandwiches, beef and veggie patties, and cheese straws.

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Thereafter, to top it off, for dessert I served fruits and Moore Flavors cheesecakes. We had the following flavors of cheesecakes: passionfruit, pineapple, apple crisp, peanut butter and jelly, guava, and caramel. Each mini cheesecake was to die for and married very well with the tea choices.

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At around 4pm I served the second batch of teas. I started off with Bluebird’s G & Tea mixed with a gin cocktail.  After that was rapidly depleted, I followed up with a Bluebird’s Raspberry Russian and Bramble Ramble both combined with gin. However, I must say G & Tea was the crowd’s favorite.

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This was just the first half of the day, stay tuned for next week’s post, where I will share with you all some of our tea party games!

 

 

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