Seeing as how soon it won’t just be the two of us, we decided that we would treat ourselves to a fancy tea at Claridge’s. Now, we have been to a few others for tea, The Ritz and The Landmark and were not as impressed and so decided to come back here. Something about the Tiffany coloured cups maybe? No – of course not! (I’m not that shallow!!). The impressive 24-tea menu and a delicious selection of sandwiches, clotted cream and scones and pastries makes for a mouth-watering afternoon of indulgence – and indulge we certainly did! Here are some pictures I sneakily took while we were there.
- Daylesford organic chicken,lemon & tarragon on granary bread
- Dorrington ham, celeriac rémoulade & tomato chutney on onion bread
- Severn & Wye smoked salmon, brown shrimp butter & rock samphire on rye bread
- Burford brown egg mayonnaise & watercress on white bread
- Cucumber, crème fraîche & rocket on white bread
The three teas I tried were:
This rare Chinese variety, crafted by masters, produces produces an astonishingly sweet black tea. It is made from very young, tender spring leaves and golden buds that have been kept while during a painstaking harvesting process. Ir is remarkably smooth with flavours of rich toffee and chocolate. This was my second favourite tea – its a strong black tea with incredible smoothness and has a lovely after-taste.
White Silver Tip
The most prized of all white teas (and the personal favourite of the Claridge’s esteemed tea connoisseur) this is made entirely of tender, spring buds, picked for only twenty days of the year from the mountains of Fujian in far eastern China. These precious leaves contain the highest levels of antioxidants, the lowest caffeine and the most beautifully delicate flavour of any teas. remarkably soft, clean and sweet with an aroma of freshly cut grass. This was my least favourite and I don’t know if there were not enough leaves to fully bring the flavour of the tea out, or if it was meant to taste unremarkably tasteless – I remember saying to the better half ‘this tea tastes of hot water!’
Rather than being made form the leaves of the tea bush, the unspeakably rare tea is made only from the velvety stems of its finely plucked spring shoots. These ‘antlers’ wonderfully express the earth of Malawi. In the same way that a wine has its terroir, a combination of factors give this single estate tea its unique flavours. Only a few kilos of Malawi Antler can be produced each year. This tea is soft and sweet with right lychee and apricot flavours. The Malawi Antler is one of the world’s most sought after teas. Consequently, Claridge’s is one of just two places in the world where you will find this gorgeous tea served. My favourite tea of the evening, a sweet after taste engulfs you as you drink this tea and it is bursting with flavour – no need to add sugar!
Yummy scones and very naughty cakes!
- Chocolate gâteau, Mariages frères crème brûlée
- Raspberry macaroon on a delicate cream base
- Pear & walnut éclair, vanilla cream
- Apricot & caraway cake
Scones (two plain and two with raisins) – freshly baked everyday in Claridge’s kitchens, served with Cornish clotted cream and Marco Polo gelée.
Traditional Afternoon Tea costs £50 , if you add a glass of Laurent-Perrier Brut, NV it costs £61. With a glass of Laurent-Perrier Rosé it goes up to £74. Yes, I hear you. HOW MUCH FOR SANDWICHES AND CAKE? It was a treat – its not like we’re there every weekend (probably couldn’t get a table anyway – took 3 months to get this booking!!) It is a lovely experience though and one that comes highly recommended.
Click here if you would like to make a booking for afternoon tea too.
Toodles for now!