A pot of tea, scones with jam and cream, dainty cakes and finger sandwiches. Nothing is more quintessentially British than afternoon tea in London. And there is an afternoon tea to suit all tastes and budgets.
AFTERNOON TEA CRUISE – CITY CRUISES
Can you think of a more civilised way of passing an afternoon than a float down the Thames while enjoying an afternoon tea? Me either. Of course afternoon tea wouldn’t be right without scones, jam and a generous dollop of cream, so fear not you’ll find those along with the selection of finger sandwiches and cakes. Plus of course tea! In fact an almost endless supply if that’s what takes your fancy. All aboard for a selection of delicious sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam, a selection of traditional cakes and unlimited tea or coffee.
FORTNUM & MASON
The tradition of taking tea and that little bit of something between lunch and dinner has long since been a feature at Fortnum & Mason. The tranquil Diamond Jubilee Tea Salon was opened by HM The Queen and has since become a stylish destination for the most traditional of afternoon teas. Bookings are essential for this one, since Fortnum & Mason have the edge on historical tea service and have been one of the most popular since afternoon tea became a tradition.
Enjoy a fine selection of sandwiches, freshly baked scones and French pastries alongside loose leaf and herbal teas in the light and airy surrounds of The Landmark London’s Winter Garden. If you want to splash out, indulge in a champagne afternoon tea; while chocoholics can tuck into a sumptuous chocolate-themed version.
Another institution in the history of taking tea, The Langham has been serving since 1865. In the luxurious surroundings of the hotel’s Palm Court, you can enjoy finger sandwiches, fresh scones with jam and cream, French pastries and specialist teas. The Langham’s afternoon tea is so good, it was named the Tea Guild’s Top London Afternoon Tea in 2010. Bookings in advance are essential.
Tea at The Ritz is nothing less than an institution. It has become so popular that there are now five sittings every day at 11.30am, 1.30pm, 3.30pm, 5.30pm and 7.30pm. This is a tea service that requires planning, booking at least four weeks in advance is essential. Afternoon tea is served in the elegant Palm Court with music by a pianist or a harpist.