We were traveling back from Lexington to Williamsburg and wanted to stop in Petersburg to try out the Blue Willow Tea Room. What a lovely place - a historic building, tea room full of interesting decor w/ a beautiful painted tin ceiling. It was Friday afternoon, around 2:15 PM - wanted to make sure we got there before the cut-off time for a full afternoon tea. Kirsti is the hostess, very engaging, w/ great wit, and extremely knowledgable about the various teas offered. We decided to share a full Grande Tea which was $40, a generous amount of goodies, with an additional pot of tea and two glasses of prosecco, just $10 more than the Full Afternoon Tea. This gave us a chance to try two different teas - one was the cinnamon spice - a popular choice and the other Kirsti picked out for us which was a very nice surprise, called Lemon Chiffon, a green tea w/ notes of coconut, vanilla, & lemon. We started w/ the scones w/ strawberry rhubarb jam & clotted cream - yum! Then we had the soup of the day which happened to be cream of mushroom & brie - absolutely delicious and not salty - we've had mushroom & brie soup @ Baker's Crust and I find Baker's Crust version to be too salty. I would love to have the recipe of the one made by the Blue Willow Tea Room. There were four tea sandwiches: egg salad on wheat, pimiento cheese on white, smoked salmon, cucumber, & cream cheese on a mini-bagel, roast beef & cheese on egg roll. All very good - maybe the smoked salmon on a mini-bagel & the roast beef would not be typical English tea sandwiches but still tasty. There were mini quiches, chicken salad in phyllo cups, & a mini-pinwheel sandwiches, nice savories - the sweets were a pound cake, mini cheesecake, & a mini-cherry tart. Not sure why some reviewers felt the offerings were commercial, came from a Sam's Club, or were stale. Everything we had was very fresh. Look this is not the Four Seasons, Jefferson Hotel, or the Biltmore where tea is at least $35 per person without alcohol - it's a little tea room located in the old section of Petersburg Virginia. Our hostess also refilled the pots of tea w/ additional hot water. The prosecco was very nice so I bought a bottle to take home as well as a tin of Lemon Chiffon Tea and a jar of Strawberry Rhubarb jam. I can see how much fun it would be to do a small bridal shower or tea for a bride to treat her attendants. We enjoy afternoon tea so I'm sure we will be back.
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