Monthly Archives: January 2015

Tea for Two at Charleston Place Hotel – Charleston- SC

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As I rode shotgun through Charleston in the day, I couldn’t help but notice the quaint houses and curious architecture. One of the most outstanding characteristics of all of these beautiful homes were undeniably the porches. Beautiful porches are admired here in the tri-state area and are quite a rarity on our suburban homes outside of NYC, unless of course your home is gigantic. PeanutPimpMama was particularly puzzled by all of the porches that had doors at the end while the porch itself remained wide open and vulnerable. What is the point of a full sized door at the end of your porch? Could this possibly deter passersby that would trespass in the first place?

271So, I decided to do a little research because I knew there had to be some logical and historical explanation. As it turns out these houses with porches that run the length of the home with a door at the end are known as “The Charleston Single House“. The door at the end of these porches merely serve as a privacy screen between the house and the sidewalk. That’s a whole lotta details for a little privacy.

269There really is something special about the style of these homes. Many a good times can be had basking in the warm Charleston sun. I was excited to see my friend’s porch after many a tantalizing facebook photo on my feed. I’ve always secretly wanted a porch swing. Le sigh*

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 This one had a particularly charming view.

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After a nice stroll through historical downtown we finally reached King St. and approached Charleston Place Hotel. It was time for some much anticipated afternoon tea. PeanutPimpMama has always had a bit of an obsession with the art of it all. I think this dates back to my studies abroad when my fascination with the old-world began. You can find many-a fancy tea salon in old hotels of London and Paris. I drank a lot of tea while living in Europe, although sadly not in salons. They were not very student budget friendly. I had one friend that joined me on the hunt for Paris’s most indulging chocolat chaud which led us to some fancy shmancy cafés however. Those were the days! To think this whole tradition started in England in the early 19th century by the 7th Duchess called Anna of Bedford (not BK) who used to complain of “that sinking feeling” in the afternoon. Anna darlin’, you are my idol. PeanutPimpMama tends to sink in the afternoon too!

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Afternoon Tea was held at The Thoroughbred Club located inside The Charleston Place Hotel. Here you can either perch on the bar and enjoy a fine cocktail or dine on one of their luxurious banquettes for assorted tapas and small plates.

316We were seated towards the back of the dining area where we had a nice and quiet corner in the section for “Ladies Who Lunch”.

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They passed us the tea list which had a nice array starting with a wintry seasonal variety, English classics along with a small selection from the Orient. Lastly, there were a couple of herbal and fruit teas listed for the jittery-fearing folk.

The First Course:

imageThe first course served were some open face tea sandwiches. I thought that was a unique spin on the typical tea sandwich which is often stingy with the filling however more convenient for handling. Clockwise: The locally favored pimento cheese in a wheel, tuna salad on white bread, lobster salad with bacon and “to-mah-toe”, smoked salmon with a cream cheese layer and capers on rye and last but not least they placed a chicken salad filled canapé in the center.

The Second Course:

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For the second course, we enjoyed the freshly baked blueberry scones and some traditional crumpets with fresh cut strawberries. Whipped cream, lemon curd and preserves for “schmearing” were served alongside our carbo-packed companions. (PPM left no savoury bite un-schmeared.) Whipped cream is just NOT the same as clotted cream but we’re a far cry from Devonshire, England.

The Final Course:

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Last but not least, the homemade cakes, tarts and tea cookies were served. Let’s face it, the whole tradition is more than a delicate “pick me up”. By the time the final course arrives one is “busting” with carbo-bloat and sausage fingers.

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Luckily we had some different textures going on to prevent that brick-laid stomach an overly-indulgent afternoon tea can leave. For $42.00 pp (including gratuity) it was on the more affordable side of the many teas I’ve had. Not too shabby!

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High Tea- An ideal excuse for me to hang out in fancy hotels and act “boojie“. Just remember folks, “You are the company you keep.” wink* For more details on tea-etiquette click (HERE).

But seriously, where was this when I was living in London? C’est la vie de PeanutPimpMama!

PPM <3

For More Information: www.belmond.com 

Questions, Comments, Concerns please email to: PeanutPimpMama@aol.com

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The Park Cafe – Charleston- SC

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It was the middle of winter and I was waking up in the sunny Charleston weather which felt fantastic. The first thing I heard were church bells across the street chiming Christmas tunes. How adorable is that?! It happens that my friend is lucky enough to wake up to that every morning, or “not so lucky all the time” she says. I suppose certain situations could be difficult ie. when you’re rocking the-hang and the last thing you want to do is wake up at 8:00am against your will, let alone wake up to bells. There’s no turning that off. I was excited for some breakfast and to start another day of Charleston adventures. Today’s foodie experiences started with brunch at The Park Cafe located at 730 Rutledge Avenue.

The Experience:

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It’s funny riding shotgun around a city that is so spread out. Most of my NY eats are found by moseying around on foot. There are so many nooks and crannies to Charleston which add to its old world flare. You can drive a couple of residential blocks and then suddenly run into an awesome restaurant. I swear there is one restaurant to a person here. You’ll never get bored but you might get fat.

273The interior of The Park Cafe is quite airy and light inside. That bright interior and a nice cup O’ Joe did a fine job of waking me up. The wrap around windows and earthy fixtures make you feel like you are sitting in a green house. This might have been the idea with their farm to table or “farm to fork” and locally grown menu. It is really refreshing to see so much camaraderie in a city and support of local businesses.

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For brunch I decided to have their simple Fried Egg Sandwich served with house bacon, cheddar, avocado, spicy mayo and a seasonal side. You can’t tell in the picture above, but PeanutPimpMama decided to rip off her delicious piece of bacon which she passed off to her friend that thoroughly enjoys pork-products. No worries… PPM enjoyed the bacon flavored residue that still remained on her perky lil huevo. The lightly toasted bun had avocado spread along one side. I’m a huge fan of avocados and totally love this new obsession with Mexican cuisine and all of its influences popping up everywhere. I feel like every time I get on instagram someone feels the need to post “avocado toast” as if it were a revolutionary invention. The Sh*te is solid yo… You can’t take that away. Those beets “tho”…

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I was particularly impressed with their side of Creamy Kale. I have had creamed kale before filled with stemmy bits the whole way through. They managed to make theirs as silky as spinach. It was topped with grated cheesy goodness that totally made me want to scoop it up with tortilla chips. I just needed some tortilla chips.

280Pictured Above: The hostess with the mostess enjoys a House Smoked Ham Melt served with Gruyere and carmelized onions. Seriously if I ate ham, that would be the first sandwich I’d pick up. Or should I say if I ate ham regularly… cough*

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On the way out I happened to notice they had etch-a-sketches available for play. You gotta love a place that has etch-a-sketch on demand. Whomever brought these in is good people to PeanutPimpMama!

289This city has beautiful dogs everywhere you go. Really, it’s another reason to move to Charleston.

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More Charleston Foodie Adventures to follow… But first let’s take a selfie!

For More Information: www.theparkcafechs.com

Questions, Comments, Concerns please email to: PeanutPimpMama@aol.com

Click Like* and Share* with your Friends! Also follow my foodie adventures on Twitter Instagram and Tumblr!