It’s Not Your Average Cup of Tea

Ryan ConklinRyan Conklin is a Chef Manager for Culinary & Nutritional Services at Rex. His mission is to bring healthy, gourmet cuisine to the Rex community & shed the label of “hospital food.”

If you’ve been reading this blog for any time now, you’ll most likely agree that it’s obvious that our team takes healthcare cuisine seriously. In addition, we are also always looking for ways that go beyond food quality to elevate the hospital dining experience.

Recently, we’ve instituted our Afternoon Tea, available to select patients on a daily basis throughout the hospital. The new system, developed by Ben Kesterson, the newest member of our leadership team, was designed to create yet another “wow” dining event for our patients and families. Ben, who had previously worked with a similar Tea Service while working at The Biltmore Hotel , has worked with the team at The Charleston Tea Plantation, located on historic Wadmalaw Island in the heart of low country of South Carolina. They have put together a menu including selections such as Chamomile Blossom, Organic Peppermint, Island Green, and Charleston Breakfast Tea.

Below, a picture straight from the grounds of The Charleston Tea Plantation in South Carolina, and a copy of our daily tea offerings.

Our room service attendants head up to see our patients usually between 2:30 and 3:00pm. After being presented with our menu, they are given the choice of some unique afternoon treats -today’s include a chocolate dipped strawberry and mini cheesecake. Fresh baked biscotti is also available daily as well.

After patients make a custom selection, our team portions out the selected tea, and prepares our French tea press with hot water. Patients are then educated to let the tea selection steep for about 2 minutes, before working the press. Cream, sugar, and lemon are also readily available.

Once again, the team has pushed the limit, and raised the bar on what the expectations are for food in the hospital setting.