Around 1840, Anna, the Duchess of Bedford, began the elaborate social ritual of afternoon tea which has left the world with this delightful aspect of culinary heritage.
Indulging in a cup of fragrant tea is a wonderful ritual which should be enjoyed every day and is a hallmark of a cultured and sophisticated life.
In our 4 hour course, you’ll discover the beauty of afternoon tea and:
- Good manners and elegant rituals at tea – table settings and essential accoutrement, how to use the correct cutlery and utensils, handbags and posture, napkin placement and use, scone and serving etiquette, holding the tea cup, the ritual of tea pouring, spoons and stirring.
- The history and traditions of tea and tea making, from the Duchess of Bedford to Emperor Shen Nung, how to identify the world’s best luxury tea, what makes for quality tea and how to brew the perfect pot of tea.
- The secret rules for a perfect afternoon tea – why remaining faithful to the classic combination of finger sandwiches, scones served warm and sweet pastries makes for the best tea; ‘milk-in-first’ or ‘tea-in-first’; the use of lemon slices and wedges or milk, to teabag or not to teabag; when to use curate stands or flat plates (many Executive Chefs don’t know this) and the difference in service using fine bone china and silver.
- The role of the hostess – greeting and seating guests, making your guests feel at ease, serving rituals, when to serve what food and to whom.
- The important differences between high, low and afternoon teas, the correct food to serve (cream, light & full), proper food placement on a curate (tiered) stand, when and how to serve coffee and champagne.
Afternoon tea is a symphony of rich traditions and which, when done with élan, is an utterly mouth-watering experience that sets the accomplished hostess apart.
In drawing rooms and salons across the world, women of style and taste gather before sumptuous delicacies of delicate finger sandwiches, warmed scones and delectable pastries, to share, laugh and learn.
Duration: Afternoons from 2 pm