Mike and I recently got back from vacation. We went somewhere warm and sunny. Actually, it was almost an exact replica of the family vacation we took two years ago, except this time the weather averaged in the high 70s and 80s.
One of my favorite parts of the whole trip was afternoon tea with my mom and niece at the Garden View Tea Room at the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. (Mike and my dad went golfing that day so they had an enjoyable time also, despite missing out on tea. And President Obama was at the Magic Kingdom on the same day, so I’m assuming he had a pretty good day too. :) ) What made it even more special was that earlier that day my niece had had a full princess spa day (can I say that I’m more than a little jealous? I want a princess spa day!) at Disney’s Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique and was dressed in the full ensemble (right down to her shoes!) as Princess Belle.
The Garden View Tea Room is off the grand main lobby of the hotel; it’s bright and airy, with a wall of windows that lets in the gorgeous Florida sunlight and overlooks the beautifully manicured gardens.
The ambiance is cozy with a casual elegance, but I have to say, the table settings were not nearly as pretty as the magnificent china settings pictured on Disney’s website (as well as on the review on The Disney Food Blog).
The menu was wonderful though – both the pretty exterior and the various choices it offered.
Here’s the menu; my mom and I decided on the Buckingham Tea, which came with 3 courses: tea sandwiches, scone and jam tart, and strawberries and cream or pastries. My niece had the Mrs. Potts tea, which came with tea sandwiches and pastries.
The selection of tea sandwiches included cucumber and watercress, egg salad, shrimp salad, curry salad, and pear and gorgonzola, and were served along with an onion marmalade tart. In general, the sandwiches were pretty good (I didn’t care for the curry salad but I did enjoy the others, in particular, the shrimp salad and pear and gorgonzola…and I loved the onion tart), but the bread was a bit stale and it was evident that they had sat out for a bit.
Next came the jam tart and scone with Devonshire cream and Dickinson’s Strawberry Preserves. This was without a doubt my favorite course. The scone was lovely…soft and flavorful and perfect topped with cream and preserves. I definitely could have enjoyed another.
I took a picture of my mom’s pastries, but I chose the exact same – berry mousse in pastry puff shaped like a swan and a white chocolate and almond cake. The berry mousse was good but unfortunately the pastry puff was a bit stale; however, the white chocolate and almond cake was divine – soft and tender with layers of cake and mousse and deep almond flavor.
Overall, we absolutely loved this experience. Not so much for the food (although the tea was wonderful, as was the scone and the white chocolate and almond cake), but for the ambiance, leisurely afternoon, and wonderful company. It’s not every day I get to have tea with a princess. ;)
Garden View Tea Room at the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
4401 Floridian Way
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Hours: 2PM to 5PM, 7 days a week
On vacation I thought of my wonderful readers and wanted to pick up a fun little treat for a giveaway. I decided on a package of Disney’s Wonderland Tea (which includes the following flavors: mango, mad tea party blend, blueberry, lemon honey chamomile, earl grey, and pomegranate) and Disney’s Wonderland Tea Honey Spoons.
You don’t need to have a blog to enter this giveaway! To participate, just leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite kind of tea.
This giveaway ends Thursday, March 1 at 9PM EST; after that the winner will be randomly chosen and notified by email. Good luck to all!