London is awash with hotels, cafés and restaurants serving our treasured mini meal, though. In fact, the choices are so excessive we’re beginning to get a bit bored of it. We’ve had our fill of cucumber sandwiches. We know cakes taste better if they’re tiny, and we still love our tea...but we want more.
Well, as always, London has the answer. The home of the Great British afternoon tea has excelled itself of late, producing a host of ideas to impress even the most experienced of afternoon tea takers. We’ve got tea for fashionistas, tennis fanatics, even tea for mad hatters. So go forth, Londoners, and try afternoon tea with a twist.
Here’s the best of the bunch:
Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea
50 Berners Street , W1T 3NG
Tumble down the rabbit hole and try an interesting take on tea at the Sanderson. The Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea is less traditional; more gastronomic adventure, with treats including an ‘Eat Me’ Queen of Hearts strawberry and cream mousse, blueberry and ice cream lollipops and rainbow coloured sandwiches. They think you’ll be grinning like a Cheshire Cat. We’re inclined to agree.
£35 per person
Wimbledon Afternoon Tea
Wimbledon: It’s a very British occasion, deserving of the most British of celebrations. The Dorchester’s tennis themed afternoon tea is just the thing, offering tennis-inspired pastries, Champagne and strawberries and cream. How very civilised.
Available from Monday 18 June - Sunday 1 July 2012
From £49 per person
Soho’s Secret Tea Room at the Coach and Horses
29 Greek St, London, W1D 5DH
An intriguingly named tea room in bustling Soho sits above a rather famous pub. If you can find it they’ll serve you “London’s best cuppa,” as you enjoy the soothing sounds of original 40s jazz and gramophone records. It’s a hidden haven. Look out for it.
Prêt-à-Portea Afternoon Tea
The Berkley, Wilton Place SW1
The one for label lovers, Prêt-à-Portea is inspired by the themes and colours of the fashion world. So on trend is this afternoon tea, that the menu is transformed every six months to follow the changing seasons. The Spring / Summer 2012 afternoon tea collection sees designers such as Dolce & Gabbana, Jason Wu and Valentino on the tea stand. Très chic.
£35 per person
London Afternoon Tea
The Lanesborough, Hyde Park Corner, SW1X 7TA
The Lanesborough have taken the art of afternoon tea to the next level with the addition of England’s first tea sommelier. Karl Kessab will guide you with your personal tea selection and discuss varieties of tea that have been carefully selected and generally purchased at auction. Tea doesn’t get much better than that.
Well this one’s left us speechless. It’s the original burlesque afternoon tea party. You sit down to a full spread of afternoon tea and are interrupted by burlesque and cabaret performances. Some tea takers even dress up in their feathers and finery!
Tickets are £42
Hurrah! Afternoon tea shall never be dull again!
Tell us what you think…