If you want to give a gorgeous book to someone for Valentine's Day (including yourself!), I highly recommend The Tea Experience by Hoffman Media. Yes, these are the same delightful people who publish such magazines as Tea Time and the new Victoria. If you click on the title, it will take you to a page that gives more information.
There are many things to love about this book, not the least is the beautiful pictures of "tea time". One can peruse the book and just look through the photos for great serving ideas for our own tea time... or just a desert party.
Each individual "chapter" gives a peek into a real tea room from various parts of the country. We read about the history of each place and often learn more about the people who either started each tea room or who are now managing each one... from small places opened by women who love tea time to well known tea rooms located in large cities... there is something for everyone. I loved "traveling" through reading about each tea room but it would make a great gift for someone who would enjoy the many destinations for a real life get-away.
The recipes are certainly worth the price of the book with each tea room sharing some of their patron's favorites. Here are just a few from many:
Lemon Basil Butter Cookies
Pesto Cream Cheese Tea Sandwiches
Chocolate Truffle Cakes
Ginger Lemon Scones
Mascarpone Ham Tea Sandwiches
Lemon Blueberry Scones
White Chocolate Raspberry Bars
Mammy's Country Ham and Tomato Tartlet
Miss Mable's Cookie Jar Tea Cakes
Chesapeake Bay Crab Tea Sandwiches
...just to name a few... yum!
This is one delicious book. :)