My grandfather often reminded me to do what I love, and so he must be smiling down on me today, because I am loving this work! After chatting with the hosts and hostesses of afternoon tea in North Carolina to build Destination Tea’s latest directory, I am learning…
Afternoon tea happens in all kinds of lovely places. In addition to North Carolina’s tearooms and hotels, tea-goers can reserve tea parties in an outdoor garden, book shop or bakery. Don’t be put off by venues that open purely for private parties, because in many cases parties of two or four are welcome.
The Northerners’ “luncheonette” or “mom-and-pop” is the Southerners’ “tea room”…sometimes. Having done my homework about the evolution of the American tea room, I knew I’d have to discover which sort of tearoom a venue was. It was worth the effort because my calls turned up several luncheonette-tearooms who also homemake a lovely afternoon tea for private parties.
Some venues only host afternoon tea as a special event. I am on the lookout for afternoon teas that only happen a couple times a year, usually around holidays or to celebrate a theme. You can find these in the state directories (details in the “Times” column), and receive notices about them by following Destination Tea on Facebook.
Inns and B&Bs want afternoon-tea-goers to understand that their afternoon tea service is exclusively for their overnight guests. (**Exception: for B&Bs/inns with restaurants that offer afternoon tea to the general public, prices and reservation details are listed in our directories**). Apparently when some of us afternoon tea lovers find out that a nearby B&B has an afternoon tea service, we want in, sometimes to the chagrin of the proprietor who has to turn us away. For our part, we hope Destination Tea’s directories may ease this issue by helping you plan ahead: either to stay at a B&B or inn that offers afternoon tea, or to find your destination tea at another venue in the vicinity. The end goal is to make sure that wherever you travel, you don’t miss out on a nearby afternoon teatime!