Monday, August 22, 2011

Rose Arbour Tea Room - Chester, VT

We stopped in here for a classic Afternoon Tea.  We sat on the porch on a gorgeous, sunny day.  Before sitting down we met a charming, three-legged, calico cat.  No picture, though, he was too quick.

This was a proper Afternoon Tea, slowly paced, with correctly prepared tea.  Too often, we go to more expensive teas and find that they leave the tea in the pot so the brew gets bitter.  We checked that the tea was removed (discreetly) and you could tell because the tea was perfect.  Kari had the house blend and I had the 1886, a blend of two teas that I didn't write down (I planned on using the pictures as a memory aid - no pictures of tea names, dangit!)

The tea came in perfectly sized pots with beautiful tea cozies to keep them warm.  We gave the tea a 4.0.

The sandwiches came on a three tiered tray and were extremely well thought out.  Each tray had four finger sandwiches of the same type, so you got three types of sandwiches.  Each type had a different shape, color and filling.  The half circle shaped Deviled Egg Sandwiches were the best, tasted just like they sound.  The square Cucumber Sandwiches on dark bread had a sour, pickled flavor that was a nice change from the usual bland cucumber sandwiches you get.  The triangle Chicken Sandwiches were a little bland, but still good.  We rated the sandwiches a 4.0.

The dessert tray was also three tiered.  The top tier was hand dipped Chocolate Strawberries and Orange Slices.  There was a garnish of Purple Grapes and flowering Mint Leaves that was quite striking.  The second layer were the Black Currant Scones with Whipped Cream and Strawberry Jam.  No clotted cream, but the whipped cream went well with the jam.  The scones were some of the best we've had.  We could have eaten a lot more than two.  We gave the desserts a 4.0

I really enjoyed this tea, where as I usually tolerate them.  Every aspect got a 4.0 on our scale, but I give the overall experience a 4.5, based on the fact that this tea competes very favorably with a lot of VERY expensive teas we've been to.  Given the choice between this tea, and the top tea in London at Brown's hotel, I'd do this one 9 times out of ten based on price alone.  If they were the same price, it would still be a tough choice, based on the differing styles.

If you like Afternoon Teas, you'll love this one.  If you've never been to one, do this one first.  You will not be disappointed!

Rose Arbour on Urbanspoon

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