Yes yes I know, I am so behind on the blogging that I have so much to make up for! Although I did give you a tiny sneak peak in my Instagram, if there is anyone out there that actually reads my blogs, you will know how close a good afternoon tea is as close to my heart as window shopping in Harrods, there is a certain warmth it brings to the heart that not many other things in life do!
What I love about afternoon teas the most is that you have to book in advance, and the better the hotel in which the afternoon tea is, the longer you have to wait for a booking. Now some people find this annoying, but I think there is a certain level of excitement waiting and having something yummy to look forward to.
So about a month ago, my bestie and I booked to go to Claridges for afternoon tea. It wasn’t my first time there for afternoon tea, but it was my friend’s. I remember my first experience at Claridges was magical, it was for a birthday a few years ago, I took the day off work grabbed Mama TLH and headed on town to Claridges. We both loved it and I was looking forward to sharing the experience with my bestie.
As soon as I walked through those revolving doors, I knew I was home. The interior of Claridges is so grand, there is no other word for it. The checkered floors, the fireplace and the beautiful floral arrangement you notice as soon as you walk in is unforgettable.
We were sat to our table and the site of the green and white cutlery gave me butterflies in my stomach. We were told that we would be served a selection of halal meats, took away the champagne glasses and ensured us that there would be no pork in our foods. Not only did this put us at ease, it made us feel so much more at home. I had decided I was never going to leave and security would have to remove me if necessary!
The afternoon tea is based in the Foyer of the Claridges. Don’t be fooled by its name though, its no ordinary foyer. he room that leads through the foyer is a well-lit room with mirrors and glass pieces all over. the decadence and elegance shines through this room, and the duo playing the piano or harp, depending on the time you arrive or the “Teatime Melodies” as they like to call them, really do make the experience all the more special.
We went through the extensive list of teas, I realised I shouldn’t have bothered as I went with my standard favourite tea anyways, Jasmine. I have probably had Jasmine tea at every single afternoon tea I have been to, so needless to say I like it.. alot!
The food started coming out and it started off with the sandwiches as our lovely waitress explained Egg and Cress on Onion Bread, English Cucumber and Camomile on White Bread, Chicken with Truffled Mayonnaise on Rye Bread, Smoked Salmon and whipped brown butter on Malt Bread.
The chicken sandwich was so moist and the chicken so succulent and full of flavour, we had no choice but to request a few more of those before moving onto the next course – pastries and scones!
Scones…!! Ahh… life would be so so dull and lifeless without a scone or two and clotted cream! (Mouth is watering just thinking about it!)
So out came the scones – raisin scones and plain scones, freshly baked every single day in Claridge’s kitchen heaven where I would guess angels descended from the heavens with Cornish clotted creme and jam.
The scones were just right, not too salty and not too soft. The consistency of the scones was perfect, although the clotted cream seemed a bit too cold to spread on the scones which meant I made a mess, oops!
Alongside the scones, out came the pastries which not only were a delight to look at but were great for the tastebuds. The pastries included Dark Chocolate Ganache, Blood Orange and Grapefruit Marmalade Macaroon, Coffee and Sea Salt Caramel, and Rhubarb and Custard.
The coffee and salted caramel pastry was my favourite, it was a moussey texture with just the right consistency. It was so light I felt as though I could have eaten a few more of those, but that could have been me just being gluttonous at this point.
The amount of detail that has gone into every single one of these foods, whether it be the sandwiches or the pastries is obvious. The ingredients used are of top quality and you can tell that alot of thought and effort has gone into a food even as basic as an egg and cress sandwich.
Just when we thought it was a great gastronomical experience and about to leave as happy bunnies, they went and shot one out f the park and gave us a cute little box of fudge…free! Now TLH is no cheapskate, but when you get a freebie you smile and say thank you ma’am!
All in all, out of all the many afternoon teas I have in in London, Claridges has to be my favourite of them all. Not only is it halal, and they cater for the needs of those who do not drink or eat halal food, but the interior of Claridges is simply breathtaking and just makes you want to buy a harp and play it at home. I love everything about this place so I can’t go on about it enough! Though Claridges is not exactly a cheap afternoon tea option, I would happily pay for good service, good food in those surroundings with someone playing Adele on the harp!
Have you tried it? What are your thoughts? Would love to hear from you!!
Till next time my loves,