Unfortunately, James is not into tea parties (“You call THESE sandwiches??? They’re like 2 inches big!”) so my exploration of the DC tea room scene has been sorely lacking. Luckily, I am blessed to work in a field that is
entirely mostly female. I share an office with all the other grad student TAs and it is basically girl time, all the time. Shopping might be the most popular conversation topic, and I have actually brought my straightener to the office to do hair tutorials during office hours. Next year we will be getting a guy in the office and it will be an adjustment for everyone, but he has promised not to make us stop talking about girly stuff. To celebrate the end of the semester, we all went to the Strathmore Mansion to have afternoon tea.
I am pretty sure that I could happily eat tea party food for the every meal and be just fine. Mini-sandwhiches with the crusts cut off! Tiny cucumber bites! Scones and clotted cream! Exclamation marks for tea party food! What it is: The Stratmore family donated a substantial portion of their land and money to the arts, and there is a big music hall up in Bethesda with the original family mansion nearby. The mansion has all sorts of beautiful rooms where modern textile art contrasts with antique furnishings. They serve afternoon tea with lovely table settings, delicious food, and live music.
Where it is: 10701 Rockville Pike North Bethesda, MD 20852 (Ok, so this isn’t technically in DC, but it is metro accessible, so I am counting it. It also isn’t somewhere I can go regularly, as our budget doesn’t allow endless tea parties… but I still had to share.)
Why you should be excited: When was the last time you attended an all-out tea party? If the answer doesn’t fall in the last five years, then there just might be a tea party void in your soul that must be filled. Come and fill it with spoonfuls of clotted cream and mini eclairs. Come and hold that pinkie aloft while you drink tea from a dainty cup instead of a stained mug. Come and revel in the delicate perfection of mini sandwiches and pink table clothes. Come and pretend to be way classier than you just might be. Because that is the power of a good tea party. I guess I should also say that I love DC because living here has let me get to know these women! I can’t imagine grad school any other way than surrounded by such a fun and supportive group of ladies.
I am also renewed in my tea room love and I’m eager to try some more in the area. Anyone know of any great places to have afternoon tea in the district?