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The Johnston House Tea Room Review

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

Last weekend my mom came to Pittsburgh for her annual solo visit and naturally I wanted to do something fun and girly with her, just the two of us. And afternoon tea seemed like the perfect thing especially since there was a locale I had yet to try in the Pittsburgh area, the Johnston House Tea Room (it’s about 30 minutes north of Pittsburgh’s city center).

Last weekend my mom came to Pittsburgh for her annual solo visit and naturally I wanted to do something fun and girly with her, just the two of us. And afternoon tea seemed like the perfect thing especially since there was a locale I had yet to try in the Pittsburgh area, the Johnston House Tea Room

The area surrounding the tea room  is very much developed (er, over developed) today but a decade and more going back in time it was nothing but farmland, vast rolling acres of greenery. But don’t worry, this isn’t some “farmhouse” style afternoon tea. Upon stepping inside the building, you’re greeted by an absolutely stunning interior, one that  could belong on the cover of an interior design magazine (okay, first you’re greeted by a small gift shop but that is not of importance).

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

Before I go any further, I do want to mention I had one major critique of the tea. Although I’ve yet to fulfill my bucket list dreams of having afternoon tea at such famous and historic spots as the Peninsula Hotel in Hong Kong and the Ritz-Carlton in London, I have still done a few memorable ones;  my favorite hands down is the one offered at the Westin Moana Surfrider hotel on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Okay, my critique. The Johnston House served tea bag tea…at afternoon tea. If you don’t care a fig about tea, you’re probably thinking right now, “tea is tea, so what?” To me (and hopefully other tea purists), the whole point of afternoon tea is not just about the finger sandwiches or the scones or the petit fours, it’s about the tea selection, it’s about the presentation.

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

When we were first seated, I was a little taken aback to see Stash tea bags at the table. But then a waitress immediately came over and asked what we would like to drink. I (naively) thought, oh, this must just be the prelude for the actual tea portion since she also offered coffee and iced tea. Don’t get me wrong, Stash makes good tea but Stash tea bags were not what I expected or wanted to see at a setting as elegant as the one the Johnston House  presents. Not to mention, there were only about a half  dozen tea bag selections to choose from,  a fraction of what was offered at another Pittsburgh locale.

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

Okay, so even with the “tea bag travesty” I still very much enjoyed the actual afternoon tea experience. The tower of culinary goodies was decadent (as they always are). The bottom tier had the savory items including cucumber cream cheese sandwiches, chicken salad croissant sandwich, quiche, and a tiny tart my mom said had an olive tasting filling.

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

My favorite part about afternoon tea might very well be the scone tier. The thing I like most about scones is that they have a very subtle yet still delicious flavor to them. They came with crème fraîche and a jam you could spread.

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

And then there was the tier with the most calories. There were slices of lemon poppy seed cake, chocolates featuring a whipped chocolate mousse topping, and miniature tarts. With all the sweet and savory goodies we had, naturally we took some home with us.

The Johnston House Tea Room Review

Minus the tea portion, everything else was lovely. Service was sweet and attentive, the ambiance just everything you envision afternoon tea to look like and have, and the food  superb. Overall I liked the other two afternoon teas I’ve done in Pittsburgh more. However, it was awesome to partake in a completely new one and also one that wasn’t too far from home.

Mothers, daughters, girlfriends, afternoon tea is truly the perfect activity to do together.  If you’ve never been to one, you should make plans to go.

Essential info: The price is $28 per person but this includes tax and tip. There were many children there but I’m not sure if a children’s price is offered and if it is, what that costs since the website doesn’t list prices. 

The Johnston House

7041 Crider Road, Suite A| Mars, PA.| 16046

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The Johnston House Tea Room Review

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3 Comments

  • Reply
    Courtney A. Casto
    September 27, 2017 at 9:31 pm

    I’ve never heard of this place! It looks beautiful and delicious. This would be a fun outing with girlfriends for something different. Great suggestion!

    • Reply
      Julie
      September 28, 2017 at 9:22 pm

      Thanks for commenting Courtney! I only learned of it more recently as my commute takes me by there every day 🙂 The setting was absolutely stunning and yes the perfect unique outing for a fun girl’s time!

  • Reply
    What I missed: London - The Red Headed Traveler
    October 11, 2017 at 9:36 pm

    […] times that I’ve truly become a tea aficionada. I’ve had afternoon tea at two places here in Pittsburgh and an utterly unforgettable time in Hawaii, and when I travel I’ll often buy unique flavored […]

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