It’s Afternoon Tea Week 2020! Running from 10 to 16 August, it is a celebration of scones, jam, cream, crustless sandwiches and, of course, tea.
Like most events in 2020, things are a little different this year. While some venues are open to enjoy treats, tea and tipples, others have opted for takeaway and delivery alternatives.
Here’s a selection of afternoon teas taking place around the country:
Gin & Jam Afternoon Tea, Blades at Hush
Forget jam and Jerusalem, this afternoon tea is a bit boozier. The Gin and Jam Afternoon Tea for Two, available as part of Virgin Experience Days for £90, takes place at Hush in London which is decorated to reflect the interior of a 1930s ocean liner.
The event is kicked off with a welcome cocktail made from Hush’s unique boutique gin as well as emperor’s tea and pear liqueur, hibiscus and cacao liqueur, or pineapple, ginger and rhubarb.
There are no cucumber sandwiches on the menu, instead there’s gin and tonic oak smoked salmon with cream cheese, Manchego and quince jelly and corn-fed chicken and tarragon mayonnaise. Sweet treats include scones with a choice of gooseberry, blackberry or rhubarb jam as well as raspberry ripple lollipops, milk chocolate & passion fruit jaffa cakes and passion fruit choux buns.
Afternoon Tea for Two, Cocorico Patisserie
Owner and head chef of Cocorico Patisserie Laurian Veaudour was recently crowned champion of Bake Off: The Professionals with teammate and pastry head Thibault Cortoisier.
For Afternoon Tea Week, the duo created an Afternoon Tea for Two, which is priced at £22 and available via click and collect. It features cheese, olive and red onion croissants, two small handmade pies (either chicken & asparagus or the vegetarian sweet potato and tomato) and sandwiches.
For a sweet treat, customers can indulge with two bite-sized Tarte au Chocolat, two bite-sized Lemon Meringue Pies, two bite-sized Paris-Brest, two handmade scones with clotted cream and jam, and two speciality macarons.
Sushi Afternoon Tea, Inamo
Pan-Asian restaurant Inamo is replacing cucumber sandwiches with sushi for its Sushi & Dim Sum Afternoon Tea with Fizz, which is available to book via buyagift.com. Savoury bites include duck or chicken gyoza, salmon and tuna sushi bites and the impressive looking dragon roll, which is designed to look like the mythical beast. As Inamo’s signature dish, the dragon roll features tempura shrimp, creamy avocado and mayo.
Pushing the afternoon tea concept even further, Inamo is serving up a chocolate fondue for pudding with strawberries, marshmallow and brownie pieces for dipping.
Authentic Afternoon Tea, Royal Crescent Hotel and Spa
It wouldn’t be afternoon tea in Bath, Somerset, without a Bath bun. Luckily, The Dower House in the Royal Crescent Hotel and Spa serves up the local treat as part of its Authentic Afternoon Tea menu. Don’t worry, warm scones still make an appearance alongside Devon clotted cream, cinnamon butter and strawberry preserve. Seasonal pastries, cakes and other sweets are also offered.
On the savoury side, there’s the Clarence Court egg, spring onion & mustard cress sandwich and a corn-fed chicken with basil & lemon hummus. A vegetarian menu is also available with cucumber, dill, black pepper & lime sandwiches on offer or avocado, guacamole & mustard leaf.
The afternoon tea is priced at £37.50 per person or £50 with a glass of Champagne. It is also included in the ‘Afternoon Tea on Us’ package whereby the hotel offers complimentary afternoon tea for two when first-time guests book a stay this summer.
Traditional Afternoon Tea, Laura Ashley Tea Room
The Laura Ashley Tea Rooms in Burnham Beeches, Solihull and Coventry are taking part in the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme, meaning diners can indulge for £10.
The Traditional Afternoon Tea celebrates the flavours of summer, notes the venue, with savoury delights including coronation chicken and smoked salmon sandwiches and Welsh rarebit tart, plus new vegan options including cucumber, apple and dill sandwiches and avocado and lime crostini.
Meanwhile, plain and raisin buttermilk scones are served with Devonshire clotted cream and a choice of strawberry, blackcurrant, or lemon curd preserves, accompanied by an assortment of cakes and pastries that changes daily.
Luxury Cream Tea Gift Hamper, Hampers.com
Hampers.com is offering afternoon tea enthusiasts the opportunity to indulge at home with its Luxury Cream Tea Gift Hamper.
Priced at £39, it includes a selection of sweet treats including handmade fruit scones, farmhouse lemon biscuits, a classic Gold Crown Whisky Dundee cake and an assortment if milk, white and dark chocolates to finish the meal. Clotted cream, Mackays blackcurrant and strawberry preserves and New English Teas afternoon teabags are also provided.
Afternoon Tea for Two, Gentlemen Barista
London-based coffee specialist Gentlemen Barista has created an Afternoon Tea for Two that can be delivered to customers across the capital. It includes British classics such as cucumber sandwiches, caramel slices, coffee & walnut cake and single-origin ground coffee. A cup of Joe may sound like an odd accompaniment for afternoon tea, but Gentlemen Baristas insists each variant has been selected to perfectly complement afternoon tea fare.
The firm makes its scones and cakes in-house while sandwich ingredients are locally sourced.