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A celebration of tea and garden

OLPH Teabags host annual event

Posted: May 20, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: May 20, 2012 1:55 a.m.

An elaborate high tea was served.

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The garden was in full bloom for the 12th annual Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church Teabags Tea and Garden Tour held at the Valencia home of Sally Coss.

The event attracted 165 guests who were seated at small tables throughout the Coss backyard and garden.

"The yard is really beautiful right now. It is really pretty for everyone to see," said Coss. "We have a great turnout and wonderful volunteers this year."

The event benefits the OLPH Building Fund, Castaic Mission Church, College of the Canyons Sweets Kitchen, St. Vincent de Paul and Bridge to Home.

"Sally has always been so generous with the use of her home," said Gloria Mercado-Fortine, a member of the OLPH congregation.

Mercado-Fortine was attending her second tea.

"The food is plentiful and good, and the view is fantastic," she said. "The whole setting is gorgeous."

The Teabags, 30 strong, handmade the large variety of savories and sweets offered at the tea.

"We have added some new sandwiches this year and desserts," Coss said.

Additions included a goat cheese and red pepper jelly sandwich and cranberry and walnut sandwich, said Coss.

Tea served from large silver urns was Palm Court by Harney and Sons.

‘It's the same tea they serve at the Ritz Hotel," said Coss. "This is the tea that Harney and Sons recommend."

One of the newest Teabags was Evie Leslie. A friend of Coss, Leslie has worked previous teas, but this was her first year working as an official Teabag.

"It's a great group," said Leslie. "Everyone already thought I was a Teabag, so I decided to join."

The food, all handmade by members of the Teabags, included Gloria's scones, Sally's lemon curd and olaleeberry jam, crab salad endive, sesame crusted chicken salad sandwiches, shrimp boats, strawberry and brie sandwiches, cranberry turkey sandwiches, cucumber lox sandwiches, french green bean shooters, stuffed tomatoes with bacon, lettuce and tomato, fresh veggie bars, pecan bars, lady locks cookies, peanut butter balls, chocolate chip shortbread, featherweight meringue cookies, rocky road fudge bars, lavender shortbread.

This year was the first time that OLPH member Diana Cusumano was able to attend the tea at the Coss home.

"This might be the last one, and I have been out of town on all the previous teas," Cusumano said.

Coss currently has her home, which overlooks the Vista Valencia Golf Course, up for sale.

"The food was incredible, the choices were unbelievable, and everything was tasty," said Cusumano. "Everything was perfectly done and beautifully presented."

To raise additional funds a 50-50 raffle was held and a selection of jams and jellies made by Coss was offered for sale.

Throughout the afternoon, guests wandered throughout the elaborate Coss Gardens, which spill down a hillside behind the custom home.

The gardens are home to several hundred rose bushes and hundreds of other perennials, and other plants and trees.

Golfers on the adjacent course could be seen putting on the nearby green.

Guests were given a small package of teas to take home as a souvenir of the event.





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