Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Spot of Tea

Afternoon tea is a tradition we associate with Great Britain. Traditionally, dinner was served at 8:30 or 9:00 pm – a long time after the morning meal which was served between 7:00 and 9:00 am.  To fill the gap, and stop the grumblings of many tummies,  tea was served.
High tea, an early evening meal, was served between 5:00 and 7:00. It included hot dishes followed by cakes and bread, butter and jam. Sometimes cold meats would also be served. For the most part, high tea was served at the dining table.
Afternoon tea, served in the late afternoon, was called low tea because it was usually served in the sitting room, salon, or library on low (coffee) tables. There are three types of Low Tea:
Cream Tea - Tea, scones, jam and cream

Light Tea - Tea, scones and sweets

Full Tea - Tea, savories, scones, sweets and dessert
The traditional time for tea in England was 4:00 or 5:00. Today tea is served in most tea rooms from 3:00 to 5:00. The menu has also changed to include three courses served in a specific order:
Savories Tiny sandwiches or appetizers

Scones - Served with jam and Devonshire or clotted cream

Pastries - Cakes, cookies, shortbread and sweets
On my first business trip overseas I spent the weekend in London. I had several places I want to see or experience, including the Tower of London, Warwick Castle, Hampton Court, and go to a tea room. A friend at the office surprised me and took me to tea at The Savoy Hotel. That’s where I discovered clotted cream. How delicious to bite into the warm scone slathered with cream.  
I found the perfect place in my story, Knight of Runes, to include The Savoy Hotel and afternoon tea.
To celebrate Monday’s release of Knight of Runes, I will be hosting a virtual tea from 4:00 to 6:00 pm EST. Please come back tomorrow and leave a comment for a chance to win a tea basket.


  1. How do they eat like that and not weigh hundreds of pounds? What's in their scones that make them virtually fat free compared to our version? Interesting. I'm all for "tea." See you tomorrow. I'd like "full tea" Ruth, with little sandwiches. That way, I don't have to fix dinner!

  2. @J. Coleman

    Virtual tea - maybe that's how they stayed thin or did they just get corseted up tighter - urghhh!

    I can just smell the scones and put on 5 pounds. Hmmm, maybe it's the clotted cream.

    See you tomorrow.

    ... Ruth

  3. I love tea. I host one every once in a while and we read leaves. Great fun. Thanks for sharing Ruth. Fun post. :)

  4. @Rose Anderson

    Tea is one of my favorite times. It's more than just gulping down something to drink. For me it's taking a break and breathing deeply.

    I haven't tried reading tea leaves. I'll have to look into that.


    ... Ruth

  5. Loved this Ruth:)...I guess you know, I'm going to have to have a cup now:)


  6. Congratulations on the release of your novel. I LOVE the title with the double word play and especially with runes. Don't know if I'm too late for your tea party, but i will tell you I love my tea. Half of my china cabinet surface is devoted to teas and I love decorative tea pots.

  7. @Julie Robinson

    It's never too late for tea. Thank you for stopping by.

    ... Ruth