When we visited Walt Disney World in 1999, one of the experiences that I truly enjoyed was Afternoon Tea at the Garden View Tea Room in the Grand Floridian Hotel and Spa. My wife and I partook of the opportunity to relax and enjoy a bit of refinement. We were joined by a British family who was looking forward to enjoying a proper tea as much as we were. So when I found that I would be visiting Walt Disney World in 2017, this became one of the things I truly looked forward to enjoying again.
Sadly, every time I went online to book a reservation, there were none to be had. And after having enjoyed breakfast at the Grand Floridian Cafe on the morning of Friday, March 3rd, I even went so far as to stop by and ask in person if there might be space available at any time that afternoon. Sadly, there were no reservations available. A visit to the hotel concierge was suggested, and even that bore no joy. As a last resort, it was suggested that I check back later in the day, when perhaps a cancellation might allow a booking.
So… off I went for a day of riding monorails and watercraft, visiting various hotels along the way. Lunch at the Wilderness Lodge’s Geyser Point Bar and Grill was nice, but I still had sights set on that afternoon tea.
Eventually, I found my way back to the Grand Floridian and the concierge desk, where an inquiry was made and indeed they could seat me for tea.
Insert dancing on the inside, while presenting a calm appearance on the outside here.
Seated at table, it was time to begin the proprieties. Time to overlook the bill of fare.
I decided to enjoy the Bedfordshire Tea, with the Perfect Afternoon Tea blend as recommended.
Now, I enjoy a bit of tea now and then, especially during the Christmas holidays. For the last few years, I have been a member of the staff at Cuthbert’s Tea Shoppe at the Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco. While not as elegant or as refined as the tea served at the Grand Floridian, we do our best to provide an exemplary experience for our guests.
Cuthbert’s Tea Shop during High Tea Service in 2016.
But back to the matter at hand! Tea has arrived.
As the courses were described above, each was properly enjoyed, in order. Right down to the seasonal trifle, a Bananas Foster trifle.
As an ancestor once described a dining experience, this was indeed a “gentile sufficiency”. It was all well worth the wait of years and the anticipation of the day.
Heartily recommended for a proper afternoon restorative for even the most dedicated of theme park aficionados.