Recently I’ve been on a “tea” kick in my columns. I had to let you in on this neat and unexpected story.

After my recent column, “Tea, mirrors and packing tape,” and hearing me describe other tea house visits, a gentleman expressed to me how he found the whole concept very interesting. He added that it was an experience he’d like to try. We decided on a date and time; he’d pick me up at 11:30 a.m. and we’d head to Carmel to Florrie Kaye’s Tea Room.

What am I thinking? I forgot to introduce you to my handsome companion: Meet my oldest son, George. When I mentioned that he might be the only male tea drinker in the tea room, he quipped, “What guy would be upset about being the only man in a room full of charming ladies? Not me!”

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When we were seated, our lovely and genial server, Jean, reviewed the menu selections and daily specials. When she returned with our individual pots of tea, she carefully demonstrated to George how to use the tea strainer/drip bowl and patiently explained why he needed to wait for the sand to pass through the two-minute hour glass in front of him: tea would be fully steeped and ready to pour into his cup and savor! Jean cheerfully answered his questions about different menu items. That being said, we ordered our mouth-watering selections.

While waiting for our afternoon repast, George wandered around the tea room looking at the collection of antique outfits hanging on the walls, paintings, mirrors, pictures dating back to the 1800s, a piano, jars upon jars of fragrant, loose tea and other charming additions that make Florrie Kaye’s cozy and welcoming. He thought the full-size pictures of Queen Mum, Princes William and Harry, and of course, the lovely Duchess Kate were outstanding. He even popped his head into the little gift shop.

“You can tell that lots of love, thought and planning went into decorating this tea room. I’m really impressed. Maybe someday I’ll sit at the piano and play some Scott Joplin,” he laughed.

The tea sandwiches and salads were scrumptious. As we were finishing our yummy desserts, Gina, the charming and delightful proprietor of Florrie Kaye’s, stopped by our table to say “hi.” We expressed our delight and enjoyment of a mom/son outing and how her tea room was the perfect spot for us.

I was pleasantly surprised that George enjoyed this experience. He is a very by-the-book guy. He has his own routine of working out—insanity workouts—eating healthy and he plays keyboard and bass at some local night spots. So, suggesting we visit Florrie Kaye’s was a bit out of the ordinary.

“Hey, Mom, I’m willing to try new stuff; this was really great; enjoyed the food, the tea room itself and certainly meeting Jean, Gina and the rest of her friendly and helpful staff.”

Then he threw in this parting thought: “I wonder what it would be like if all four of us guys came here together.”

Don’t even flirt with that thought, Son!

Ruthann can be reached at