There is nothing more quintessential British than the centuries old ritual of Afternoon Tea. More than anywhere else in the world London is synonymous with Afternoon Tea. Today it has become a dining experience in its own right. If you love the idea of tea resting in a pot waiting to be poured into bone china tea cups, scones with jam and cream and some dainty little cakes you’ll love a British Afternoon Tea. Afternoon Tea will usually start with finger sized sandwiches filled with smoked salmon, cucumber, or egg and mustard cress. These are followed by scones with jam and clotted cream and a selection of cakes served on tiered cake stands. All Afternoon Tea menus throughout London will have slight variations, but one thing they all have in common is copious amounts of tea served from teapots. Please also note it may be required for you to book in advance, and smart dress codes may apply.
Afternoon Tea dates back as far as the early 1800s. Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford came from the era where only two meals were had each day, with many hours left between her breakfast and dinner she began to feel hunger pains and scheduled time to have a pot of tea and eat a light snack privately in her boudoir each afternoon. Over time her acquaintances began to join her and the idea of afternoon tea was perpetuated. Now this centauries old tradition is offered in hotels right across the United Kingdom.
The Goring Hotel was named the winner of the award for the “Top London Afternoon Tea 2013”. The Goring Afternoon tea is severed daily from 3.00pm - 4.30pm. In the summer months the Afternoon Tea is served in the sunny terrace where you will be overlooking the Goring’s beautiful private gardens, and it is actually one of few luxury hotels in London to serve Afternoon tea outdoors. In the colder winter months, you can enjoy afternoon tea indoors in the warm and cosy Lounge beside a roaring fire. Children and guide dogs are welcomed, just make sure to let them know in advance, high chairs are also available on request. Disabled access is also available. For £37.50 per person The Goring Afternoon Tea includes Eggs Savoury, A selection of finger sandwiches, including chicken with soured cream, tarragon & red pepper, smoked salmon and egg mayonnaise, Freshly baked, warm homemade scone with Devonshire clotted cream and jam, Spice cake with Brandy icing, Chocolate and mandarin dome, Chestnut roll, Mulled wine jelly with cinnamon cream, Chocolate and hazelnut slice and Tea, brewed to your liking (or coffee).
The Savoy serves Afternoon Tea in the heart of their hotel in The Thames Foyer. Enjoy a delightful afternoon tea in an informal setting with daylight flooding through the glass cupola as the resident pianist plays wonderful music. The Savoy is also a member of the Tea Guild and received a 2011 and 2012 Award of Excellence. In addition to the traditional afternoon tea, The Savoy also has a new, bijou tea store located in the Upper Thames Foyer, Savoy Tea. It offers a selection of beautifully packaged Savoy teas, handmade jams, biscuits and fresh patisserie, and bespoke tea accessories. Guests also have the opportunity to see the hotel's pastry chefs and chocolatiers at work as they put the finishing touches to the exquisite cakes and confectionery. Gift vouchers are also available to purchase for Afternoon Tea. For £42.50 per person you can select from a range of teas served with finger sandwiches, homemade scones with clotted cream & jam and a mouth-watering selection of cakes and pastries.
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Afternoon Tea at Brown’s Hotel was voted The Tea Guild’s ‘Top London Afternoon Tea 2009’. Afternoon Tea takes place in The English Tea Room, the interior is a sophisticated mix of traditional and contemporary style. With a Baby Grand Piano playing you’ll be able to relax and indulge yourself a choice of 17 teas, including Brown’s own blend, along with a selection of finger sandwiches, an assortment of delicate pastries, fruit and plain scones with clotted cream and strawberry preserve, as well as a choice of freshly baked cakes. Or if you’re celebrating something why not try out Brown’s Champagne Afternoon Tea. Brown’s Hotel also has the first ever ‘Prestige Seasonal Tea Library’, curated by tea traders, Lalani and Company, who selected seasonal lots from a selection of the world’s leading tea gardens. There are also two Sommeliers to answer all your tea related questions. Traditional Afternoon Tea is £39.50 per guest.
Afternoon Tea at One Aldwych in the Lobby Bar is for people with a real sweet tooth. The hotel is the official hotel of musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and celebrates the wit and wonder of the Roald Dahl classic this summer with its new Afternoon Tea. The Afternoon Tea inspired by Charlie and the Chocolate Factory uses the freshest seasonal ingredients for its sweet and savoury treats along with surprising elements that capture the imagination. Candy Floss – rhubarb & custard and pear, Chocolate Caramel Milk and Heritage Tomato Tart are just some of the tasty delights on offer. Executive chef Dominic Teague hopes to catch the story’s humour and fun in the Afternoon Tea. For £29.50 per person this unique twist on the classic Afternoon Tea is not to be missed.
The Lanesborough Hotel was winner of The UK Tea Council Award of Excellence 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. Afternoon Tea is served daily at the hotel's restaurant, Apsleys. Afternoon tea has all the beloved trimmings prepared by the hotel's award-winning pastry chef including freshly baked scones, thick clotted cream and home-made fruit preserves. The tea sommelier is more than happy to take you through all the varieties of tea that have been carefully selected and guide you on blends, The Lanesborough even has its own blend. Gluten and Dairy free Afternoon Tea is also available upon request.
Afternoon Tea at the Milestone Hotel centrally located in the centre of London is like stepping back in time to the 19th century. Afternoon Tea is served in the warm and cosy Park Lounge, where it feels like you’ve left the city and escaped to the countryside with an open fireplace and great comfort. The Afternoon Tea menu starts off with the Traditional Tea, complete with finger sandwiches, warm freshly baked scones served with Devonshire clotted cream and homemade preserve, as well as a selection of pastries including éclairs, tartlets, cupcakes and macaroons. Make sure to let the staff know which treat you liked best and they'll be happy to bring you another as well as free flowing top-ups of your selected tea or coffee. There are also additional options in case you fancy treating yourself to something a little extra special like a bottle of champagne. They’ve also started a very popular Chocolate Afternoon Tea for all the chocolate lovers out there that includes brownies, chocolate scones and fondue. And in celebration of the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty's coronation we are also offering a Royal Afternoon Tea complete with her favourite treats.
Afternoon Tea at the Dorchester is served five times daily at 1.15pm, 2.30pm, 3.15pm, 4.45pm and 5.15pm in The Promenade and in The Spatisserie. Guest staying at 45 Park Lane hotel can also avail of Afternoon Tea at The Promenade. The Dorchester Afternoon Tea includes savoury finger sandwiches, crusts are removed from fresh baked white and brown breads and the delicate slices are filled with smoked salmon, egg, chicken, cream cheese and cucumber. Warm scones arrive next, made from a recipe unchanged at The Dorchester for over half a century. They are served with glistening strawberry jam and Cornish clotted cream. The final course is the pièce de resistance, the platter of cakes and tartlets. The cost is £41.00 per person. They also do special Afternoon Tea’s such as Wimbledon Afternoon Tea, Vintage Afternoon Tea on The Balcony, Champagne Afternoon Tea and a selection or others.
The Stafford hotel has Afternoon Tea in the Lady Lyttelton daily from 3pm-6pm. The décor in the Lady Lyttelton has been designed to evoke the feeling of dining in a friend’s home, so you will be eating in the upmost comfort. The executive chef has created a menu that keeps the traditional and quintessentially British baking alive but with a touch of Kempinski patisserie flair. The Afternoon Tea includes a selection of teas and coffees, selection of five petite sandwiches, coronation chicken on brioche, crayfish, tarragon on soda bread, ham, English mustard on white bread, roast beef, horseradish, watercress on granary bread, cucumber, cream cheese on white bread, fruit and plain scones served with seasonal jams and clotted cream, ‘Tipsy’ cake, chocolate teacup filled with white chocolate and ginger tea mousse ‘Bosphorale’ the Kempinski dessert of 2013 which only costs £28.50 per person.