Is it love or an obsession? I may be obsessed with my love for afternoon tea or I may be in love with my obsession. At this point in the game, I doubt it matters.
I love the whole experience, the formality and the deliciousness that comes with a proper tea service. There are many interpretations of afternoon tea from a casual cafe setting to the extreme opulence of a Palm Court. I enjoy it so much that I have done it solo while traveling, as well as sharing tea time with good friends. Afternoon tea has also become a special bonding moment with my adult daughter and I. We have been doing afternoon tea since she was an early teen and still enjoy the fanciful experience.
A list of eight Afternoon Tea experiences over the years, on both sides of the pond. This is PART ONE- My God there is more!
Ladurée at Harrod’s in London, England – 2009
One of the loveliest of afternoon teas and one of my first documented with food photos. This was back in 2009 so I pulled out my digital camera, handed it to my bestie and she took a couple quick shots! I think they turned out quite well with some modern day editing apps, thank you modern day technology!
My afternoon tea at Ladurée in London was divinely different from the traditional menu that is laid out for you. At Ladurée, you are able to choose your tea sandwiches and sweets as opposed to receiving what is plated for you. Plus you may choose from the different Ladurée croissants offered rather than traditional scones. It was a magnificent change of pace!
☕ Reservations are recommended for Afternoon Tea at Ladurée inside the luxurious Harrod’s Department Store in London, England → Ladurée London at Harrods
Palm Court at The Ritz in London, England – 2014
My daughter and I had a whirlwind month long trip through Europe after she graduated high school and afternoon tea at The Ritz in London was on our To Do list. Actually, it had been on my To Do list for a very long time and our trip to London together pulled it all together. No one I would rather have afternoon tea with at the Ritz than my daughter.
Everything was perfect and our delicious tea was always poured by our server. He was very attentive and would check our cups as he passed by. The delicacies served were truly marvelous. The sandwiches, which are my favorite part of any afternoon tea, were traditional and delectable. My daughter enjoyed the heavenly scones and we both loved the sumptuous pastries. Everything was shall I say- RITZY!
The attention to detail of afternoon tea at The Ritz in London was impeccable- from the China, the silver flatware and tea pot, the fresh flowers, tuxedo wearing servers and the pianist. They have been doing tea for a very long time and in my books they set the bar of tradition and taste.
For more information on dress code, location and reservations, please visit their website – Afternoon Tea at The Ritz in London
Hotel Le Meurice in Paris, France – 2015
So my bestie has been my bestie since high school and we have come a long way from driving into Los Angeles to eat at the now closed, French Market Café. Twenty Five years later, we were enjoying tea at Hotel Le Meurice in Paris and what a pleasurable and posh experience. Life is serendipitous like that, you never know what it has in store for you!
My friend and I decided on the blossoming tea which is always fun to watch and a great way to gauge when your tea has finished steeping. The afternoon tea service was traditional with scones, tea sandwiches and an assortment of luscious little pastries. We also ordered one of their special sweets which was ‘The Lime’. This magnificent work of art was made to look exactly like a lime on a hanging stem. When you cracked it open, inside was a tangy lime meringue-so delightful. I found it exciting to see what it looked like inside but it was more exciting to try it.
For more information, hours and reservation information, please visit their website: Restaurant Le Dali at Le Meurice
Palm Court inside The Balmoral in Edinburgh, Scotland – 2017
The Palm Court was just beautiful. The classic interior, the harpist on a little balcony over looking the restaurant, the service, the food, tea and the people partaking in tea were beautiful, old and young a like.
I started off with a classic Champagne cocktail with the fizzing sugar cube, it is one of my favorite ways to start off an afternoon tea service, with champagne! I ordered the Peony Rose Tea and watched my tea server do his long pour. It was very skilled and I have never seen anyone pour my tea like this before.
The scones to start were scrumptious with the added clotted cream and jam.
Both the sweet and savories were delicate and delicious. I even tried haggis for the first time here at Palm Court. The haggis was made into a bon-bon and fried, it was very good. I always wanted to taste haggis, just a little taste so I got my taste. The sandwiches were classic, simple and flavorful.
The sweets were just that, so very sweet. I actually had to pace myself and drink water or my tea in between each sweet because things were starting to taste the same. They were very beautiful though! When it came time for the bill I was presented a sorbet on a little cone to cleanse my palate along with a gift from The Balmoral. I received a little house made chocolate in a little white box as well as a tiny tin of loose leaf tea. This exquisite and delightful afternoon tea became my second favorite in the world!
For more information, hours and reservations please visit their website- The Balmoral Restaurant
The London Hotel in West Hollywood, California – 2015
Here is a sophisticated idea for a Baby Shower- an afternoon tea! My bestie and I hosted this lovely afternoon tea at The London for a mutual friend’s Baby Shower. Since our friend was having a little girl, we brought in pink balloons and little pink boxes filled with sweets. The feminine theme of afternoon tea wove quite well with the whole shower although this will work very well if the expectant mother is having a boy!
The London Hotel in West Hollywood was an impressive location for Afternoon Tea as they gave us a private room for our little Baby Shower.
Afternoon Tea is served on Sundays inside the Boxwood Sitting Room from 1:00 -4:00. For more information and to book a reservation, please visit their website – The London West Hollywood
Tres inside the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills – 2017
Have I mentioned that afternoon tea with my daughter has been one of our favorite things to do as Mom and Daughter Duo? We have been doing this special ritual for about a decade and this time around was at Tres by José Andrés. We decided on a weekend trip to Los Angeles and had afternoon tea inside the SLS in Beverly Hills, which was very special!
According to the afternoon tea Menu, the savories and sweets are a “Playful Twist on a Classic Tradition”. A few of our favorites were the Caviar Steamed Buns with Creme Friache and Cucumber with Goat Cheese and tomato caviar. Chef José Andrés has done it again.
For menu, hours and reservation information, please visit their website: Tres at SLS Hotel
B.E. A S.H.E.R.O. Foundation Benefit at Veranda inside the Four Seasons, Las Vegas – 2018
Veranda inside The Four Seasons in Las Vegas is an excellent location to have afternoon tea while visiting Sin City. I have done it twice, once at this benefit and another time with a friend. There are a couple of fine places in Las Vegas that serve a high end afternoon tea, The Veranda at Four Seasons and The Tea Lounge at Waldorf Astoria.
Mimosas to start and tea to complete plus a classic afternoon tea setup with scones, savories and sweets.
B.E. A S.H.E.R.O. Foundation provides information and support to empower girls and women under 25 years old who have been exploited, abused, abandoned and neglected. For more information, please visit their website- B.E. A S.H.E.R.O. Foundation
For Afternoon Tea reservations, please visit their website: Veranda at The Four Seasons
Tea Lounge at The Mandarin in Las Vegas- 2015
Prior to the Tea Lounge at Waldorf Astoria, there was the Tea Lounge at The Mandarin Oriental. In other words, Hilton purchased The Mandarin Oriental and it is now the Waldorf Astoria. I have been to afternoon tea at both the Mandarin and the Waldorf, both were outstanding but very different from each other.
This afternoon tea was the Holiday Themed Tea which both delicious and adorable! The sweets were very special, created into ornaments and snowmen with the favorite flavors of chocolate and gingerbread. It was also my 43rd birthday, so it was a marvelous way to celebrate in my favorite fashion!
For Afternoon Tea information and reservations at the current Tea Lounge, please visit their website: Tea Lounge at Waldorf Astoria
Under Certain Circumstances there are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea – Henry James
Wishing you inspiration and enjoyment at your next afternoon tea!- Trixie
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📸 All photos are taken by me and are my intellectual property – Trixie Navarre