Tea For Three

Written by Mary Ann Fitzmorris April 01, 2023 21:28 in Dining Diary

Mother’s Day was way more fun with little children to adore you and make special pancakes for you, etc. Now it’s just Tom and me, and I have no idea how to spend this day of mine. I used to always cook back in those days because we never cooked at home, so that was special to me.

It seems sort of sad to do that now, so we were planning to go across the lake with Mary Leigh to a big buffet brunch. And then Patty scheduled Fleur de lis Tea Farm on the show to talk about a Mother’s Day brunch tea. Done.

This is not something to attempt when your GPS isn’t working well. I hadn’t properly set it up on my new phone, so Mary Leigh had to use her position a few miles ahead of us to direct us. This place is out there! We had no idea what to expect of this here in the middle of nowhere, on a farm that has been around only a few years. How would they put on a brunch? 

The one building on the property is lovely, fashioned of concrete, metal, and sinker cypress so old they are having it carbon dated soon at LSU.  One of the walls has the most beautiful mural and ancient Greek quote, I had to photograph it.

There were only a few tables and it was communal seating, so we didn’t know our dining companions, who were locals and very nice. The tables were beautifully decorated with bowls of roses and floral china, towers for tea sandwiches and treats, and chintz sashes on each chair. 

On the towers were cupcakes and baby bundt cakes topped with pecans. On the bottom tier were chicken salad sandwiches on baby croissants and deviled eggs dusted with paprika. Floral trays were stacked with little spinach mini quiches and mini Quiches Lorraine, and crab toasts they made in the tiny kitchen. A baked crab dish came to each guest in a small ramekin, and a delicious pasta salad filled with broccoli and olives, and lots of feta cheese was set beside each plate.

All of this was accompanied by their really great Big Easy black tea, hot in floral teapots and cold with crushed ice. This went down so easily I didn’t need my requisite lemon. The first signature tea blend from Fleur de lis Tea Farm is really pretty spectacular. It has won awards and is represented as a blend by Harney & Sons of New York.

Also on a drink buffet table was the signature Big Easy tea blended with grape juice and fruit to make a refreshing Sangria.

The most interesting food here was the crabmeat baked in the ramekin. It was loaded with crabmeat and a blend of cheeses and delicate spices. The cheese melted to throw off a little film of grease, but it wasn’t unpleasant. This was very good, and the star of this show.

Mary Leigh surprised me by wishing she had more pasta salad. That doesn’t seem like her thing, but it is proof of just how good the pasta salad was. There was a lot in this salad based on rotini pasta, and the plentiful feta created a sludge that coated everything nicely. I wish I had more as well.

The little mini quiches were the frozen kind that you eat like a snack, but they are very good and I am always happy to run into them. I find the crust flaky and so much better than it needs to be. Also on this tray were the housemade crab toasts, very likely the crabmeat mixture in the ramekins baked on a crostini with extra cheese. 

The little bundt cakes were buttery and a nice treat after a light meal like this. The cupcakes were a pleasant surprise. If I never bit into a cupcake again it would suit me just fine. But when Mary Leigh exclaimed at their excellence I had to taste it. The inside was very pale pink with a hint of lemon and strawberry, frosted with vanilla buttercream with bits of nuts on top. These cupcakes were light and good enough for me to eat one. That’s rare.

None of this was brilliant but it was quite tasty, beautifully presented, and a great deal at $45 per person.

After the brunch, I went shopping in their little shop, which was really a few shelves with interesting tea-themed items for sale. I bought a bag of the Big Easy tea and a tea set.

Then we went out to the tea plants to hear about “plucking” and tea growing and production. The spread of land is beautiful, these are very nice people, and I can’t wait to watch them grow into something big. In the meantime, I look forward to anything they come up with that will make me want to visit again. You should too.