Daytime Decadence High tea

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Tea at the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court hotel is just what you want it to be. The colonial-inspired Explorers Lounge, with its faux animal prints and Persian carpets, upholstered chairs and posh service, is just the right setting—especially if you are seated with views of the Inner Harbor. Tea arrives steeping in its china pot (none of this lukewarm water with bag on the side nonsense), accompanied by a tower of noshes, both sweet and savory. Start at the top of the three-tiered presentation with raisin scones crisp around the edges, slathered in soft butter and fruit jam. Next is the elegant selection of finger sandwiches: smoked salmon, cucumber with a dollop of blue cheese and bacon, ham with asparagus, a luscious deviled egg garnished with microgreens. The bottom rung is for sweets: chocolate-dipped strawberries, two-bite servings of tiramisu, shortbread cookies and fruit tarts. If Liberian-born Chef Zeus Harmon takes a liking to you, he might bring out a sampling of sweet coconut cake. The Royal Tea option begins with sparkling rosé and ends with a spiked fruit dessert (berries in Chambord or Grand Marnier). It’s the perfect post-shopping afternoon prandial. The Royal Sonesta Harbor Court, 550 Light Street, 410-234-0550 sonesta.com/baltimore

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