Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Chicago Road Trip

I picked my girlfriend up around 9:45 last Saturday morning [1/30], and we headed across state en route to 'The Windy City'.  We made 3:30 p.m. reservations for Afternoon Tea at Russian Tea Time while traveling, and felt very fortunate they had an opening. Chicago's Saturday traffic wasn't as unnerving as week days, but the price for parking was hair-raising - $33 for two hours, but cheaper than NYC. 

The restaurant/tea room opened in 1993, and is located at 77 E. Adams between S. Michigan Ave. and S. Wabash Ave.

The front dining room was filled when we arrived, so we were taken to the back dining room. By the time we left, the back dining room was full too [below], testament to the restaurant's popularity.

Grandparents were there with their two granddaughters having Afternoon Tea [donning hats and fascinators], and graciously allowed me to take their picture.

~ The Russian décor was lovely with several beautiful samovars and dolls. ~


Our tea, a delicious Darjeeling-Black Currant blend, was served in Russian tea glasses - "Podstakannik".  The wait staff continuously refilled our glasses, and I drank so much that it wasn't until the early hours of Sunday morning that I finally fell asleep!  

The menu had nine tea quotes printed on it, but Dorothea Johnson's was our favorite:  "The soul of politeness is not a question of rules but of tranquility, humanity, and simplicity.  And in the taking of tea it finds perhaps its most perfect expression." 

~ The three tier server.  ~

On the top were warm raisin scones with whipped cream and strawberry preserves.  The menu referred to them as "beginnings."  They were more cookie shape, and had a dense texture, but we enjoyed them.

The middle tier held the savories:  Salmon and Cream Cheese Tea Bites; Crunchy Spring Crepes infused with delicate Peanut Sauce; Ground Chicken Croquette mini-sandwich with Honey Mustard Sauce [Pozharski]; Eggplant Orientale mini-sandwich; Potato Piroshky Bite; and Quiche with Sun-dried Tomatoes.

Before we ate the Mini-Sweets on the bottom plate, we decided we couldn't dine in a Russian restaurant without having a bowl of Borscht [not included in Afternoon Tea]. It was thick and delicious, and we were glad we got it.

Needless to say, we were so full we couldn't eat everything on the dessert plate, but what we had was very good: Napoleon Torte; Rugalah; Lemon Cake; Cinnamon Cookie; Sugar Cookie; Chocolate Cookie; Mini-Apricot Plum Strudel, and White Egg Cookie "Bizze".   

The price of Afternoon Tea is $29.95 [excluding gratuity] and is served from 2:30-4:30 p.m. 7 days a week.  If you're ever in Chicago or a surrounding suburb, I highly recommend it.

From the Russian tea room, we headed to Glen Ellyn, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, where we had reservations to stay at Inn at Water's Edge on the campus of College of Du Page for the next two nights.  Our third floor room was lovely.

Sunday's activities tomorrow's post...

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Today I'm joining Rose Chintz Cottage for No Place Like Home
Antiques and Teacups for Tuesday Cuppa Tea
Bernideen's Tea Time Blog for Bernideen's Tea Time Cottage and Garden Blog Party
Martha's Favorites for Teacup Tuesday


  1. What fun! I'm enjoying reading about your road trip.

  2. What a wonderful tea room, Phyllis! I wish I lived closer so that I could tag along with you. I have a friend that lives in Chicago and she says that tea at the Drake is one that she loves.

  3. Another lovely tea outing for you, Phyllis! The food looks wonderful although I have never had Borscht. My son lived south of Chicago for three years while doing his post doc and was in Chicago many times. Unfortunately he never liked tea until just recently. I'm sure he would have given it a go now if he was still there. I'm so glad you shared your experience with us. I never get to enjoy outings like this here where I live so I get to enjoy them vicariously through postings like yours. Thank you for sharing.


  4. Every time I visited Chicago I told myself I'd get to the Russian Tea Room and I never did. Shucks! I can enjoy it through your eyes. Happy Tea Day!

  5. Well that is awesome! I love the kind of teacups they use.

  6. I wished that I had visited the Russian Tea Room when I was in Chicago. I'm glad that I can live vicariously through you. Thanks for sharing!


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