Thursday, 15 March 2012

High Time For High Tea

(Image: Afternoon Tea Parties by Susannah Blake)

Afternoon Tea is seeing something of a revival and here at Butterfly Lane we have unashamedly tried and tested quite a few.  We’ve gone down the traditional British route with our recommendations, nothing screams High Tea like a grand hotel and a man with a crisp white apron, but we have also thrown in a quirky option for good measure!  So here are our favourite tea haunts in London town…
The Ritz

The Ritz afternoon tea is a quintessentially British institution in the most elegant of surroundings.  With a pianist playing, immaculately dressed waiters waiting and cakes baked to be eaten, it has everything you can expect.  Freshly cut finger sandwiches, cakes served on an opulent three tier cake stand and scones with lashings of clotted cream, divine!  Make sure you arrive with an appetite because the food just keeps coming and coming.   The Ritz is very traditional so remember, no jeans and men must wear a jacket, but a bit of British stuffiness won’t do you any harm!  The Ritz is a must.


A world away from The ‘appropriate’ Ritz, The Parlour at Sketch is a buzz of coolness.  With quirky and eccentric décor, mis-matched antique armchairs, porcelain stag heads and standard lamps galore, it is shabbily chic!  Using the traditional afternoon tea formula of ribbons of finger sandwiches, egg, ham and of course traditional cucumber, accompanied by a sweet layer of amazing cakes and pots of tea to be served in mix-and-match vintage cups and saucers.  It is laid back and fun, we highly recommend!

The Dorchester

The old school decadence of The Promenade at The Dorchester is the perfect setting for an afternoon of grazing and sipping from an elegant cup and saucer.  With imposing fresh flowers everywhere, it is a luxurious treat.  The highlight of this tea is the scones, which are made from a recipe that has been unchanged at The Dorchester for over half a century, and I can see why, they are delicious!   

*Maybe slip in to The Bar afterwards for an incredible bellini and mouth-wateringly good canapes.  That's if you're not too full from afternoon tea! 

The Bar at The Dorchester | The Dorchester

The Wolseley

A champagne afternoon tea at The Wolseley is a real treat.  It has impressive surroundings in the style of the grand cafés of Paris and Vienna, with high ceilings and a bustling atmosphere.  The afternoon tea itself is excellent and as you would expect, but the main pull of this restaurant is the grand Venetian and Florentine-style interiors, large pillars and stunning stairways.

Why not bring the afternoon tea spirit in to your own home with Butterfly Lane’s Afternoon Tea collection. From cake stands, tea pots to tea strainers here are a few of our favourites things to bring some afternoon tea charm in to your very own dining room.  All will be available to buy at Butterfly Lane very soon! 

If in doubt Afternoon Tea Parties by Susannah Blake is full of great ideas and recipes for your individual take on this classic British tradition.  

We think it’s high time you had High Tea, enjoy...X

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