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What is Afternoon Tea or Low Tea?
Afternoon tea was introduced in Britain in the early 1840s as a mini three course meal to stir up the appetite for an evening meal at 8pm. Afternoon tea involved finger foods such as 1) mini sandwiches, scones served with clotted cream and jam, 2) sweet pastries and desserts… 3) and of course an array of tea! Afternoon tea is considered more fancy and is served on low tables (hence it being referred to as Low Tea) with nice linens and of course manners!
What Time is Afternoon Tea Served?
Afternoon tea is typically served in mid afternoon at 4pm, a precursor to the evening dinner at 8pm.
What is the Difference Between High Tea and Afternoon Tea?
High tea is not a fancy tea, despite what many think. It was usually for the working-class and served on high tables, hence the name. High tea is usually at the end of the work day, around 5pm and a much heavier meal than afternoon tea. Afternoon tea, however, is fancy and served as a light pre meal with tea before the evening dinner.
The Pfister Hotel, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The Pfister Hotel is a long-standing historical hotel in Milwaukee that opened in 1893 featuring Romanesque Revival design. The Pfister was the most lavish of its time, costing nearly $1 million dollars. It featured fireproofing, electricity and individual thermostats in each room.
Afternoon Tea at The Pfister Hotel
My daughter and I enjoyed a girls-only weekend while the boys were away at winter Cub Scout camp, so we took full advantage of making it as girlie as possible!
We binge watched Gilmore Girls and crafted our little hearts away…and then went to Milwaukee for our Afternoon Tea reservation! I love getting to do fun things like this with my daughter and hope that she remembers all of the fun times she and I had when she’s older.
After you are seated, you are presented with an huge variety of teas to choose from. You get to smell each tea and then make your selection. You are also offered extra garnishes to infuse your tea with if you would like.
Once you’ve chosen your tea, each person is given a tea pot that stays warm your entire stay.
Then the mini sandwiches, scones, pastries and desserts are brought out!!
The afternoon teas are hosted on the 23rd floor (the top floor) of The Pfister Hotel in the Blu Room. The views of Lake Michigan and the old architecture are absolutely stunning
Once we had drank as many cups of tea and ate as many desserts as we possibly could, we went back down to the lobby and gawked at the beautiful painted ceilings. It reminded us so much of our recent trip to Germany, Austria, France and England!
Years ago, she and I took my mom to Afternoon Tea in Chicago for Christmas one year. She was just a little tike then and now she’s so grown up!!
I’m so thankful for this time with my girlie. Time is going by way too quickly and before I know it she’ll be off to college and I’ll be sitting at home in our 1886 Victorian sipping tea by myself, crying, thinking about my girl! Take the time to enjoy your kids…even if on most days they drive you bonkers!
Next time you are in the Milwaukee area, make sure you stop by and enjoy an Afternoon Tea yourself! It is best to make a reservation ahead of time!