Etiquette for Traditional Tea Service. Tea party.
The traditional time for afternoon tea is four o’clock. Today, most hotels and tearooms in North America serve from three to five o’clock with the hours often stretched slightly in either direction. Along with a choice of teas, there are three distinct courses:
- savones (tiny sandwiches) first to blunt the appetite,
- then scones, and finally,
Afternoon tea has also been called “low tea” because it was taken at low tables placed beside armchairs. (It’s never properly referred to as “high tea”.)
Invitations may be extended and accepted by telephone, face-to-face, or by mailing them at least a week in advance. Depending on the geographic location, perhaps two weeks or longer in advance is not unreasonable. Invitations may be informal or engraved, handwritten in calligraphy, or by a calligraphy computer program.
Invite a close friend or two also as “pourers” and set…