Afternoon tea, a British tradition that is still going strong. Yet, I was only introduced to this a mere five or so years ago by a friend. Since then, we have been going for afternoon teas as often as possible, as well as hosting our own at home.
In February, this year, we decided that we had to pay a visit to ‘The Ritz Hotel’, booking via lastminute.com our visit was easily arranged, due to its popularity that was the earliest date we could find with a time that suited us. The booking confirmation arrived in a fancy card box, very classy and a very nice touch.
After a very short walk from Green Park station we arrived at the world famous Ritz Hotel. As you walk past the friendly doorman into the hotel you can see why Royalty and celebrities have been attracted to the hotel for so many years. Tea is served in the magnificent Palm Court, and you only need to glance at the room to see why. The room is breathtaking and just being there makes you feel special.
There wasn’t an empty seat in the room and the atmosphere was very relaxed but all very sophisticated.
The waiting staff were very friendly and they went around to each table offering to take photographs for anyone that wanted some. There was a large range of teas to suit all tastes and the staff offered assistance in selecting where required. I decided to try something new to me so I selected the Silver Needle which I do have to say was very nice. On arrival the the selection of pastries and sandwiches were well presented and looked beautiful. Unfortunately, I hadn’t had a chance to eat all day and so I wasn’t sure if there would be enough food but what I wasn’t expecting was for the sandwiches to be replenished which was fantastic as not all places that serve afternoon teas will do this.
I couldn’t wait to tuck into the delicate finger sandwiches on the bottom plate. Reminiscing as I write, I am actually salivating at the thought. They provided a good selection of fillings and we enjoyed them all very much.
- Ham Sandwich with Grain Mustard Mayonnaise on White Bread
- Cheddar Cheese Sandwich with Chutney on Onion Bread
- Cucumber Sandwich with Cream Cheese, Dill, and Chives on Caraway Seed Bread
- Chicken Breast Sandwich with Horseradish Cream on White Bread
- Scottish Smoked Salmon with Lemon Butter on Rye Bread
- Egg Mayonnaise Sandwich with Chopped Shallots and Watercress on White Bread
The scones arrived whilst were eating the sandwiches, they were freshly baked and we tucked into those next so we could fully appreciate them while they were still warm. Whilst eating them, I could honestly say I really didn’t care about the number of calories I was consuming, it was well worth it as I do not often get to enjoy freshly baked scones with Strawberry Preserve and clotted cream.
We then turned our attention to the pretty pastries arranged on the top plate. These tasted as lovely as they looked and went down a treat.
Just to make sure that we didn’t leave hungry (these people must have mediterranean blood as we are totally obsessed with food and stuffing all guests until they are close to popping) they also came around with a Carrot and also Strawberry Cake. The Carrot Cake was moist and not overly sweet, and as a carrot cake rather good.
I was a little confused when eating the Strawberry Cake. If you split the cake into parts, it was topped with buttery cream with strawberries on either side, then, there was a pistachio paste sort of like a marzipan, this was absolutely divine, wow, I would love the recipe for that, then, below was a strawberry preserve followed by a pastry. As a whole, I found the combination unusual, not really what I would have named a strawberry cake. The parts work individually but as a cake I wasn’t quite so sure.
As the session drew to a close we left very satisfied with our afternoon tea. It was on the whole to an exceedingly high quality and for those that enjoy afternoon teas one that you should put on your must try list.