Victoria Tea Pleasures 2017

In a frantic and hurried world, Victoria offers a respite from the chaos of everyday life. The pages are dedicated to living beautifully when entertaining, cooking, and decorating and even in artistic pursuits - and now you can enjoy every single page on your tablet! With a distinct personality all its own, Victoria personifies feminity, passion, and an enterprising spirit. Each issue features decorating and entertaining ideas, recipes, travel stories, essays from inspiring women, and much more.

United States
Hoffman Media
7 Issues

in this issue

1 min
dear friends

Whether you are a teatime novice or have a long-standing tradition of hosting teas, I think you will find these pages filled with helpful suggestions and recipes for most every occasion. Known the world over for its restorative powers, tea is available in countless flavors and in almost three thousand varieties, ranging from white and green to black and oolong. An invitation for tea presents an opportunity for guests to enjoy companionable conversation while following the age-old practice of sipping a beverage steeped from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. I enjoy having one or two friends drop by midmorning for just-baked scones and a bracing cup of English Breakfast or Earl Grey. For a larger group and a more formal presentation, I bring out my mismatched English bone china…

4 min
planning a tea party

PLANNING AHEAD Making the decision to host a tea is the first step in what promises to be an enjoyable process. With a notebook at the ready, first consider these key questions: • How many guests are anticipated? • Will it be casual or formal? • Will the tea be themed, or is it an occasional function? Taking down details such as who will attend, the type of styling desired, and ideas for décor can help the party begin to take shape, and the notes could prove useful to have on hand for future events. When it comes to planning the menu, some essential considerations apply, regardless of the type of gathering. Food selections may, in part, be determined by the level of formality. A good starting point can be to consult favorite magazines and cookbooks,…

3 min
brewing the perfect pot of tea

A savvy hostess is keenly aware of the importance of serving teas that pair well with the various items on her menu. Offering a selection—perhaps a different choice with each course—allows guests to sample infusions that may be unfamiliar to them. It is always prudent to prepare and taste new varieties a few days in advance in order to refine steeping methods and to verify that the beverages will, indeed, complement the foods you plan to serve at your gathering. Here are some guidelines for making a perfect pot of tea: Start with good water. If tap water is suitable for drinking, then it is suitable for making tea. If this is not the case, using bottled spring water is an alternative. Heat the water to the desired temperature in a teakettle on…

3 min
tea traditions

The enjoyment of tea is one of modern civilization’s most sublime pleasures, while the ceremonies that surround the beloved brew are embedded in the very cornerstones of tradition. Opening one’s home to friends and strangers alike and welcoming them with food and beverage has long been an expression of hospitality in many cultures across the globe. Although it is commonly understood that the British elevated the taking of tea to its once and again place of prominence in polite society, history reveals that tea parties were a popular pastime in Europe and in the American colonies for almost a century before becoming the high fashion of England’s aristocracy. The Dutch were among the first Europeans not only to widely consume tea but also to serve it with dainty cakes and other delicious…

2 min
tea glossary: a healthful infusion

All true teas are derived from either the Camellia assamica or Camellia sinensis, variations of the evergreen shrub. Both yield four types of teas whose differences stem from the method of processing. Herbal teas, however, as well as infusions and tisanes, are made from the flowers, seeds, roots, leaves, or bark of another plant. Processing, specifically oxidation, determines the flavor and the strength of teas derived from the Camellia plant. When the leaves are rolled, their surfaces are cracked and exposed to oxygen, which initiates the transformation. WHITE TEA, made from baby tea leaves, is rich in antioxidants, which promote health by preventing disease and combating the effects of aging. It is also imbued with theanine, a rarely occurring amino acid. Theanine’s many benefits include anxiety reduction, mood improvement, an increase…

3 min
cotswold lavender farm

Snowshill, Worcestershire, England High over the idyllic Vale of Evesham in England’s enchanting Cotswold Hills, spuncotton clouds drift lazily across the pastel blue sky. Farmland stretches out in all directions, occasionally punctuated by a cottage constructed from the area’s indigenous gold-hued limestone. It is a setting that inspires paintings and poetry—and a yearning for the perfect cup of tea. Amid this postcard-worthy scene sits Cotswold Lavender, a third-generation operation growing the aromatic flower known for its calming and restorative properties. Though the enterprise began with just a few sprigs, the farm now boasts more than a half-million plants in forty-plus varieties. When summer arrives, the fields burst into bloom, covering the land in an amethyst blanket and bringing forth the ingredients included in a variety of botanical-infused products, from soap to sugar,…