Tuesday, 20 April 2010

ALICE IN EDINBURGH: Everything you need for a mad little tea party!

Create your own tea scene

Just two hours before penning this, I actually purchased my third charity shop tea set of 2010. Before I even knew Alice was back on the scene, I'd already succumbed to the tea cup obsession. Between having beer in tea cups at the Roxy Art House bar and pot-tails at Roseleaf Cafe, I'd decided that having a wide selection of pretty tea pots, cups and saucers would result in many creative uses. The last survivor of my wine glasses got broken last weekend, but I need not fear! As I write, I'm enjoying a lovely tea cup of wine. Last night, I served up homemade mushroom soup with basil and Granada Padana and it was of course doubly amazing in a darling cup and saucer. So I encourage all to scope out your local charity shops and be imaginative with what you find. And if you end up with a cupboard of totally mismatched bits of china, then all the better. Happy digging!

Loopy Lorna's and Tea Cosies

If Alice were to arrive in Edinburgh today, I can think of no place more appropriate to welcome her than a place called Loopy Lorna's. Situated on Morningside Road, Loopy Lorna's caters to every sort of tea connoisseur. The staff girls are all friendly and clad in sweet pink and frilly pinnies that complement the general pink incorporated decor. The menu boasts ice cream sundaes, cream teas, afternoon teas, 'scrummy breakfasts', 'moreish mains' and 'luscious light bites'. The tea menu includes pots of hot stuff called things like Sparkling Darjeeling, Loopy Lapsang, Oh my Masala Chai and, served in a glass tea pot, Jasmine Dragon Pearls. My very favourite thing about Loopy Lorna's? The tea cosies! Not just nice knitted tea cosies, we're talking fuzzy cosies - beaked and tailed cosies. Yes, every tea pot presented is wrapped with adorable knitted animals; and since you are bound to love and want to keep them, they also sell various sizes for under £20. Amazing, I tell thee. Have a looksie at 370 Morningside Road.

Roseleaf Pot-tails

You've probably heard us bang on about these in the past so I just have one reminder: Rosewater 'O' Leith pot-tails! Yes, cocktail plus tea pot equals pot-tail. Imagine vodka with rose syrup, lemonade and red chili flakes served on ice, with straws, and poured from an old tea pot, into old mismatched tea cups. Let them make you, or mix for yourself, this stellar drink. Between the fun, creative flavours and the hot pink colour, we reckon Alice would down it faster than you can say 'I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date'! Roseleaf is located off the Shore in Leith at 23/24 Sandport Place.

Vintage aprons

Alice is perfect proof that a girl can don an apron over a dress anytime and she still looks fab and makes many friends! Armstrong's Vintage (Grassmarket, Teviot Place, Clerk Street) has oodles of gorgeous vintage aprons that are too pretty to stay in an old box or a messy kitchen. They really are charming little works of art that look amazing as a unique addition to a less exciting skirt or dress and with handy little pockets in them as well, it's a great place to stash sugar coated sweets ala Alice post Caucus-Race! Grab one at any of their three locales or find one on their online shop at www.armstrongsvintage.co.uk

Go on, go mad!

Also published in the March 2010 issue of Bite Magazine in Edinburgh, UK