Saturday, October 26, 2013

"A Cup of Christmas Tea" Afternoon Tea

 Christmas Afternoon Tea is a long-standing Jennings Family and Friends tradition.
Readers of this blog remember in 2009 when we built an addition to our home
we added a room we call "the tea room."  
It is a special place where I invite friends and family to gather around the table
to sit amongst some of the many tea cups and tea pots in my collection,
and share a pot of tea, good food and good conversation.
The theme of this tea is "A Cup of Christmas Tea"
Guests in the above photo from left to right:
Mary, Lynn, me (Linda), Melissa, Patty and Alice.
For this special afternoon tea, I set-up a round table covered in a red holly tablecloth,
 using a mixture of Christmas china to set the table, including my
vintage Rosina Yuletide English Bone China cups, saucers, and plates,
with a matching small cream pitcher and open sugar bowl. 
I collected these pretty teacup trios a few pieces at a time.
I placed the plates on square green glass plates given to me years ago
by my Aunt Ida.  I wrote about those plates in a previous blog post.
Aunt Ida purchased the plates in Chicago in the 1940's when she, her young son, 
and husband traveled there by train.  She fondly told me how
she carried them in a box on her lap during the journey back to Kentucky.
I think of her every time I use them. 
For the charger, I used white Lenox dinner plates. 
I used my "Cup of Christmas Tea" teapots, and the matching
dinner plates on the three-tiered server. 
The pretty napkins are very special because they belonged to Lynn's mother, Martha.
The stemmed glasses were given to me by Mary several
years ago.  They were her mother's Christmas glasses,
probably collected at Arby's, but treasured because Mary's mother,
 Laura, enjoyed using them.
I want to mention, the vintage Campbellsville cherry dining room chairs
were my mother's.  She needlepointed the green chair bottoms.
She was so proud of them, and I know she is with me when I used them.
 I enjoy using the three-tier server  the three tea courses.
The top tier served the mini desserts, cookies and pastries.(the last course)
The middle tier traditionally serves scones. (the second course)
And, the bottom tier serves sandwiches and savories. (the first course)
Guests around the table begin eating from the bottom tier first and move upwards.  
Several three-tiered servers will be used at a table to serve one
of each item to every guest.  You can see the plate of sandwiches below will
serve one of each sandwich to two people.  
The second course, is Cranberry Scones, two each for three guests, with a garnish
of star fruit slices, were served with clotted cream and lemon curd.
If you look on the table at the 2nd and 4th photos above, you will see
clear glass vintage dishes of clotted cream and lemon curd. 
The third course, served last, is the dessert course, served
on the top tier of the three-tiered server.  Shown here
each guest has one of every pastry.

 The tea I brewed and served for this special event was
Organic Brown Crown Jewel
a special blend of Assam and Ceylon, exclusive to
The Brown Palace Hotel and Spa in Denver,
purchased when Glenn, Austin and I enjoyed afternoon tea there in July. 
Details of this special Christmas Afternoon Tea, including recipes,
will be posted over the next several blog posts. 
I hope you will come back to read more!
You may also read about my teas in the November issue of at this link


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