What better way to spend Mother’s Day than with my dreamy husband and sweetest daughter at a First Ever service of High Tea at American Tea Room. Edie was on her best behavior for most of the time, and I got to enjoy my favorite people and favorite pastime all in one exceptional spot.
David and Randy, the owners of ATR, greeted us fondly and we were shown to our table. We were also introduced to one of my new favorite people, Valerie Gordon, the artisanal confectioner preparing all the sweets and treats to accompany the glorious selection of teas.
High Tea started off with a most beautiful Amuse of the most delicate and decadent chocolate filled with a lovely cream filling. It was accompanied by Bao Zhong Royale, an Oolong with just the lightest hints of jasmine and narcissus. Edie dove headfirst into both, and I couldn’t blame her. Delicious!
And now came the potentially difficult decision of tea. A hand-picked selection was offered on a tea menu, but David came to my rescue – knowing my love of black teas – suggesting a new arrival not listed on the High Tea menu: Ruby Black. The history of this lovely Assam is the stuff of novels, but let me pique your interest by saying that this tea has been in production for less than 3 year and can only be found in the U.S. at our own American Tea Room. David, you know me too well…
Next, we were served Creme Fraiche Scones with the largest pat of real butter I’ve ever seen, and a mouth-watering selection of strawberry-creme fraiche jam, strawberry rhubarb jam, and a marmalade. I loved how the scones were a little bigger than an Oreo, light, fluffy, warm, and manageable. There was no worrying about whether or not to cut off chunks – just the luxury of slathering the whole thing in butter and jam-of-choice and nibbling away.
The tea sandwiches were next – a selection of three per person. Curried Chicken with Muscat Grapes; Breakfast Radish, Butter and Lemon Confit; Crab Salad with mint and Lime. All open-faced, all designed to be consumed in two or three heavenly bites. The Curried Chicken came out the crowd favorite – I even heard one patron request additional Curried Chicken sandwiches because they simply couldn’t get enough!
And last, but definitely not least, the sweets. Oh, Valerie. You are a Master of your Craft. An Earl Grey Petit Four; a Lemon Curd and Creme Fraiche Tartlet; Matcha Shortbread Cookies; and the most divine chocolates I have ever tasted. Gene and I tried to name our favorite of the assortment, but we just couldn’t. The petit four had a simple sweetness with that gentle bergamot (and perhaps lavender) of the Earl Grey, but the tartlet had everything that is best about a lemon meringue pie without the meringue. And the chocolates… Well, they are just a category on their own that can’t be compared. Toffee squares coated in chocolate, topped with either an almond or what appeared to be some kind of rock salt. The toffee was not the kind that you will be excavating from your teeth for years to come, oh no. This is real, buttery, nearly melting in your mouth toffee like nothing I’ve ever had before. And caramels. I love caramels. I didn’t know how much I loved caramels until I tasted these. The liquid caramel is lovingly hidden in dark chocolate domes. I suddenly realized I had never really had caramels before.
Thank you to American Tea Room and to Valerie Confections for providing such a lovely opportunity for me and my family to enjoy tea together is such a setting. And thank you to my husband and daughter for making my Mother’s Day quite a special moment. While the High Tea was incredible, sharing it with my family was priceless.
Enjoy High Tea at American Tea Room
Saturdays and Sundays
401 N. Canon Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Reservations strongly recommended
310.271.7922 or firstname.lastname@example.org