My love of afternoon tea has been well documented on this blog.
Because today I’m bringing you not one, not two, but FOUR types of afternoon tea for you to try.
In the name of science, I joined the Starwood Hotels team on a mega-massive Afternoon Tea-athon in London. (Geddit? Cos it’s like a marathon but of tea!)
We wandered from one lovely hotel to the next, exploring gorgeous interiors and stunning balconies. We ate aaall the sandwiches and scones and swan-shaped pastries. We drank aaaall the champagne and tea and cocktails.
It was tough. Like, suuuuuuch hard work guys. But I did it all for you.
I took one for the team.
The Fancy Afternoon Tea
Our first stop of the day was The Park Tower hotel in Knightsbridge.
Firstly, the interiors of this place are STUNNING. Embroidered wallpaper, mismatched glass vases, magnificent chandeliers… It definitely feels special. The staff are fantastic as well, really friendly and informative. Our drinks were constantly topped up and our lovely host was very helpful in explaining what was in each dish.
We started with savoury quiche tasters: perfectly crisp pastry, with a light-as-air salmon and King Crab filling. This was definitely one of the highlights of the day!
The menu is traditionally British and they change it up frequently to use seasonal ingredients. For example, I just checked the current menu and for autumn it looks like instead of the salmon and crab, they’re serving a wild mushroom and Porcini quiche with roasted hazelnuts – which sounds delicious!
This is a FANCY afternoon tea. One where you celebrate your birthday or take your mum to on Mother’s Day.
Where: 101 Knightsbridge, London, SW1X 7RN
Highlights: The swan pastry, the seasonal menu, and the beautiful interiors!
Price: From £39 per person.
The Quirky Afternoon Tea
Have you ever seen anything as adorable as the 101 Dalmations afternoon tea?!
Playing on the fact that the Sheraton Grand hotel is a stone’s throw away from Green Park, where the two dalmations first met and fell in love, the Dotty Afternoon Tea celebrates the film’s 55th anniversary.
Tea (and champagne!) is served in the stunning art deco Palm Court. The arched ceiling, gilded details and cut crystal glasses are so beautiful, and the live harpist playing classics in the background adds a lovely extra touch. She played the Beauty and the Beast theme at one point and I almost cried.
The food is as quirky as you can expect from a doggy themed afternoon tea. Among other things, you’ll find: “hot dogs” made from choux pastry and smoked trout; short rib and bone marrow hot pot; chocolate and plain scones with jam, lemon curd (my favourite!) and clotted cream; and a stunning red and black Cruella de Ville raspberry mousse cake, which got a big thumbs up from everyone on our table!
This would be perfect as a special tea for the kids, as well as for those who want a little luxury with a bit of a twist on the traditional tea.
Where: Piccadilly, London, W1J 7BX
Highlights: The fabulous lounge, the huge tea list and the smoked trout “hot dog”!
Price: From £37 per person.
The Classic Afternoon Tea
The Le Meridien Piccadilly is quickly becoming one of my favourite hotels in London. Their rooftop bar is beautiful both inside and out, and we took advantage of the fantastic weather to hole up in a corner of the outside terrace.
We quickly settled into comfy deckchairs, sipping vanilla gin and chilli cocktails, nibbling on the BEST sandwiches of the day (the fresh salmon and cream cheese were particular favourites) and soaking up the view and vibe of Piccadilly.
This tea is a classic. The perfect sandwiches are followed by equally perfect daisy-topped macarons, chocolate tea cakes filled with light marshmallow, and perfectly fresh scones, still warm from the oven.
It’s a lovely tea. That’s the word that keeps coming to mind: lovely.
Perfect for a girly celebration, maybe a baby shower or hen do!
Where: 21 Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BH
Highlights: The sandwiches, the cocktails and the view!
Price: From £34 per person.
The Cool Afternoon Tea
To celebrate 40 years of British punk, the W Hotel in Leicester Square has created a punking AWESOME afternoon tea that they’ve named: the Anarch’tea.
Served in the sun-drenched W Lounge, you’re presented with a tea stand made of vinyl records, stacked high with sandwiches, cakes and scones.
The sandwiches are actually pretty standard (and could really do with a bit more filling to be honest!), but the cakes are so spectacular that it kind of makes up for it. Named after punk songs from bands like The Sex Pistols and The Strangers, you’ll find red, blue and white Battenburg slices, zipped lips made from strawberry mousse, and even an ice cream cake with a blue mohawk.
And the scones. Guys. THE SCONES. They are officially the best scones I’ve ever had in my life. I ate two and took three of the leftover ones home with me. They’re warm, buttery, crumbly perfection and I want to eat them every day for the rest of my life.
I’m actually going back again this weekend to try the whole thing so WATCH THIS SPACE. The full review will be up soon!
Where: Wardour Street, Leicester Square, London, W1D 6QF
Highlights: The scones (oh God, the scones…), the ice cream cakes and the vinyl tea stands!
Price: From £30 per person.
AND NOW FOR THE EXCITING NEWS!
I have a 15% discount offer to give you guys!
Simply book yourself in for an afternoon tea at one of the four hotels mentioned above, and just make sure you reference “TEA-ATHON” when you’re making the booking.
The offer only lasts until the 30th of September, so make sure you don’t miss out!
Want to read more on Starwood Hotels’ afternoon tea offers? Click through to their website!
*I was a guest of Starwood Hotels for the Afternoon Tea-athon.
All opinions, words, photos and scone loving are my own!