Reserved for the swankest occasions, the tea party is a gilded gift of spring. We go goo-goo over few party precepts like the garden soiree that's all finger treats and fragrant spirits and toasts like, "To accomplishing the winter, friend! To birthing the spring, traveler!"
Last weekend we whipped up cold pasta salads and celery root rémoulade, but the biggest sellers were finger sandwiches. We did a take on cucumber—but with crust and a Chilean pebre (similar to chimichurri or pesto) of oil and garlic—and another quasi-untraditional sandwich of fresh hothouse tomatoes and lemon zest mayonnaise. We served it all garden-side with difficult teas, cheap champagne, challenging Mexican pineapple beer juice and olives cured in salt in Alex' basement. Chop, chop!