Originally dreamed up in the 19th Century to avoid a slump in post-lunch energy levels, afternoon tea is now one of the ultimate culinary pastimes. Explore these afternoon tea restaurants found in The Michelin Guide 2020.
Ritz Restaurant, Piccadilly
A palatial setting on London’s Piccadilly, The Ritz requires no introduction and is known the world over for its afternoon tea offering. The famed ‘Tea at The Ritz’ is taken in the hotel’s pristine Palm Court, with its marble pillars, chandeliers and fresh flower arrangements. Staying true to tradition, The Ritz stand features sandwiches on flavoured breads, scones and classic British cakes and pastries.
Adam Handling Chelsea
A beautiful dining room filled with marble and foliage, Adam Handling Chelsea is found within historic hotel, The Cadogan. Artful twists and turns are brought to classic afternoon tea, with time-honoured recipes elevated with quirky accents – like colourful knitted tea cosies, gilded stands and sweet treats served in egg shells.
Buckland Manor, Buckland
Found within ten acres of lush Worcestershire countryside, Buckland Manor is a majestic setting dating back to the 13th Century. Plush armchairs and oil portraits adorn the low-ceilinged, wood-panelled space, while parasol-covered tables are dotted through the expansive grounds during warmer weather. The tea range is timeless, featuring finger sandwiches, warm scones and fancies.
The Art School, Liverpool
As the name suggests, The Art School brings an array of creative, modern British menus to Liverpool’s Georgian Quarter. Set within a restored Victorian building, the sky-lit dining room is flooded with natural light, and striking scarlet chairs are offset by crisply lain tables. Carefully sourced ingredients from a fleet of named, trusted suppliers make up The Art School’s afternoon tea.
The Goring, Victoria
The definitive British dining experience, The Goring presents a classic and luxurious afternoon tea befitting of its regal postcode – sitting just next door to Buckingham Palace. Having welcomed guests for tea since opening over a century ago, the hotel presents a classically refined stand of scones, sandwiches and pastries, while a regularly changing selection of desserts are influenced by in-season fruits.
OXO Tower, South Bank
In a landmark building bearing the famed beef stock logo, OXO Tower marks a move away from tradition with the branding of its offering: ‘Not Afternoon Tea’. An entirely sweet affair, OXO’s tea comprises desserts and paired cocktails, all of which are inspired by some of the capital’s most famous theatre productions.
No Fifty Cheyne, Chelsea
This contemporary Chelsea spot offsets its kitchen’s rustic open-grill concept with a calming, plush setting for afternoon tea. This restored pub feels worlds away from its SW3 buzzy postcode on account of a stately home-style drawing room, filled with leather-bound books, chandeliers and homely scatter cushions. Open sandwiches, scones, and mini versions of classic desserts make up their elegant tea stand.
Petersham, Covent Garden
Bedecked with a wonderful array of flora and fauna, Petersham is found within aptly named Floral Court in London’s Covent Garden. The menu is largely Italian, with produce sourced from the site’s original Richmond nursery and Devon-based farm. Petersham’s creative afternoon tea stand features European-inspired savouries, scones with house jam and creative desserts.
The Delaunay, Strand
Drawing inspiration from Europe’s grand cafés and filled with impressive Art Deco features, The Delaunay is a vibrant all-day spot with a menu drawing influence from classic Viennese recipes. Come afternoon, expect an afternoon tea stand showcasing a delightfully continental spin on the classic British tradition of afternoon tea.
Sharrow Bay Country House, Pooley Bridge
Steeped in the rolling hills of the Lake District, Sharrow Bay is an idyllic country house setting playing host to a timeless afternoon tea experience. This seasoned tradition has been a mainstay of the hotel for decades – originally served to returning hill walkers in need of a refuel. Enjoy views down onto neighbouring Ullswater from the elevated, Regency-style Drawing Room.
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