I have found that museums are enjoyable places to take tea. Virtually every one has a restaurant, tea house, or coffee shop. Usually, the food proves delicious. I can’t think of a better combination than a day admiring art and a delicious cup of tea with a bite to eat. If the gallery has a decorative arts wing, so much the better.
Did you know that there are entire museums dedicated to porcelain, silver, and china? One of the best I’ve seen is the Silver and Crockery Museum in the Hofburg Palace (Winter Palace) in Vienna. When I visited, the Hofburg tour — then available only in German — proved sparse (I’ve learned it has since improved). However, the Crockery museum, located below the palace, was amazing and well worth the price of entry. It turned out to be one of our favorite sites. Even my husband enjoyed the experience!
The British Museum has a magnificent array of teapots as well as some important cups and saucers, including early Jasperware. The place is enormous, so be sure to start your day early. We enjoyed lunch there and the unusual teabags (see photo below). No, that’s not a tissue protruding from my teapot! My companion chose a cappuccino as a pick-me-up. After all, perusing a large gallery can be exhausting.
You never know what you’ll come across when exploring a museum. At the National Portrait Gallery in London, we happened upon a special exhibit on the Brontë Sisters. We got lucky — just a right place, right time kind of thing. After hearing about them for my entire life, I got to see the actual tiny books and scraps of paper on which the girls wrote. It was a treat I hadn’t anticipated and one for which I am grateful. Read about some of what I saw here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/art-news/12057053/National-Portrait-Gallery-to-reveal-mysteries-of-shadowy-Bronte-brother.html
I’m lucky to live near many world class museums. I’ve never been disappointed with the exhibits or the tea! So, escape the summer’s heat, find a nearby museum, and lose yourself for the day!
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