Soup cups were considered to be the height of sophistication before cream got such a bad rap. They had a mild reprieve as consommés and other clear, low-calorie offerings were bravely served up in the place of the delectable, tiny portions of rich bisques and cream soups with which many a lovely dinner party had its beginnings.

I still love soup cups, and I use them a lot. Not only for soups, but for ice-cream, sorbet, ceviche, pudding and chopped salads – anything you’d serve in small portions. Soup cups are meant to hold just a few mouthfuls, and we can all find room in our budgets, both caloric and monetary, for small indulgences.

Antique stores practically give them away – they take up too much storage, and besides, nobody wants all the trouble any more. Bring it on, I say.  Their delightful shape is very appealing, and besides, they can easily be stored in containers designed for cups and saucers.

Or consider a set in gold & white (or platinum and white), which can be used with almost any colour group. I discovered this secret when dining at Blantyre, where they frequently use antique tableware, augmented with modern Lenox side plates, soup bowls and cream soups & saucers.

Soup cups and saucers. Relic of a bygone era? Maybe.But they sure are pretty to look at and fun to use.