QUESTION OF THE DAY

Hi John Dickson:

Do you know of any restaurants in the Carp to Goleta area that serve TEA, as in high tea? I already know of Anderson’s Bakery, The Biltmore, and El Encanto. I know there are no proper tea rooms per se, but wonder if you know of any other places that “do a tea” or serve tea. As in scones, little sandwiches, actual tea pots of actual purposely brewed tea?
The last closest places have closed: Penelopes in Lompoc and The Tea Cozy in Cambria. Now I think the closest is a tea room in Sierra Madre. Thanks for any intel!

– Michele

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11 Responses to QUESTION OF THE DAY

  1. Ted says:

    The Simpson House on Arrellaga has exactly what you are looking for!! (Or at least they had high tea some years ago. I don’t see any info on their site…)

  2. Rex Of SB says:

    Now you see, THIS is exactly the type of thing that is needed locally. As Michele points out there are virtually no tea rooms at all anywhere in the area. This is Santa Barbara, not Barstow.

    There are a number of venues that would seem to be equipped to offer a first-class High Tea, such as that served at the Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia, or the Brown Palace Hotel in Denver. Locally, the Upham Hotel, Canary, Biltmore, DoubleTree, and the new Hotel Californian all spring immediately to mind.

    Santa Barbara is a world-class travel destination, and a delightful amenity as a place to get High Tea would show our visitors that we aren’t all total cretins.

  3. Gary says:

    If you’re going for the British thing, I think you mean “afternoon tea” rather than “high tea.” Two very different “teas.” I remember having afternoon tea in the place in Sierra Madre (name escapes me) about 30 years ago — hope it’s still going strong.

  4. Ray Goldenberg says:

    Rex, The Biltmore does serve the Tea every weekday afternoon. I am not sure about the weekends. It has been one of our favorites for decades.

  5. Posh says:

    Somebody asked about High Tea. (It is properly Afternoon Tea. High tea is served as a hearty evening meal, and then tea as a finish. It is not the finger sandwiches that the writer is asking about.)

    Andersen’s serves it. El Encanto does a middling to poor job of it. The Biltmore is okay. The Bacara used to do a very good Afternoon Tea. But as they are now a Ritz Carlton property, I do not know the quality of it, or if they even do it any more.

    That is my intelligence report. (I used to live in Bristol, and have spent over a year of my life in England…)

    Americans can’t brew a proper cup of tea. Sigh.

  6. Karen says:

    The women in my family have a tradition of having Afternoon Tea the day after Thanksgiving. I have researched this subject extensively. The Biltmore no longer serves afternoon tea (but when they did it was the best in town). The Simpson House does a lovely tea but only mid-week (I believe Tues. thru Thurs.). Anderson’s does an afternoon tea but not quite we are looking for. The San Ysidro Ranch didn’t even know what I meant by afternoon tea (“yes, we have tea” was their answer). Alas, El Encamto is the only local place that does afternoon tea any day of the week. After a couple of disappointing teas I wrote the manager before we went last November. I am happy to report that improvements were made and we had a lovely afternoon tea. I was hoping the new Hotel Californian would offer afternoon tea but they do not.

    • Michele says:

      Thanks Karen. Yours was the most useful reply. We are already planning to go to El Encanto. I’m glad to hear you had a good experience recently.

      • Karen says:

        Would love to hear how your experience was. Hopefully they have maintained the high standard which one expects with afternoon tea service!

        • Michele says:

          Hi Karen: Yes, indeed, our tea at El Encanto was wonderful! I hope you get to see this reply. There were six of us, our server was sweet and attentive, the tea was very good and the food was glorious in both presentation and deliciousness. Of course the view was spectacular, and we really felt pampered. I can’t wait to go again.

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