Tea at the Getty Villa

I’m more of a tea person than a coffee person. I especially love high tea.

Now before you start imagining me as some “Downton Abby” snob, let me explain.

I have made some of my best friends over an invitation for high tea. Nothing is a better antidote to a disproportionately testosterone laden job (most of us work in tech) than tiny sandwiches, delicate pastries, all served on pretty porcelain plates.

After living years in San Francisco, I had gathered a nice little list of places for all moods. It’s been more difficult to find similar places in L.A., simply because everything is more spread out here.

But one recent discovery is the Getty Villa, which has high tea on Thursdays and Saturdays. It’s served upstairs from the cafe, in a room that is frankly, a little sterile (the downstairs patio for the cafe is much more idyllic). But the food is wonderful, and the kitchen very accommodating in that L.A. way that I find both comical and endearing. Gluten free? No problem! Pescatarian? Of course!

Even if you have no interest in tea, the Getty Villa is worth a visit. The locale is amazing, and it’s a fun contrast to its sister museum, the Getty Center. The Center is like a futuristic fortress for a vaguely European millionaire/supervillian; all clean modern lines and epic vistas. It was used as the setting for the Federation in the last “Star Trek” movie!

But the Villa is like an Alma Tadema or Maxfield Parrish painting; a “cosy” roman villa, complete with gardens and fountains. All that’s needed are flowers for your hair. As for its bit of Hollywood history, it was used for scenes in Elizabeth Taylor’s “Cleopatra”.

If you go, be sure to call and make reservations, even if you’re just visiting the museum. There’s no entrance fee, but it’s fifteen dollars for the parking and spaces are limited.

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1 Comment

Filed under art, food

One response to “Tea at the Getty Villa

  1. Dave F.

    We–videogame-industry boys–used to do the afternoon tea thing at the hotel in Tokyo where we’d stay. It was very dainty, indeed, but we were very dainty boys.

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