Afternoon teas hit the spot all year round, name an occasion and guaranteed there will be a handful of eager pastry chefs who’ve put their spin on things and adapted it to a theme. Now it is, of course, time for tea to turn festive – think mini slices of Christmas cake, spiced scones and exotic teas, and the occasional glass of Champagne. Read on to see our pick of the best Christmassy afternoon teas in the capital.
What: Rudolph on your macaroons
Why: If The Ampersand Hotel was personified for Christmas, it would be a naughty little elf. Immaculately dressed but with a playful side, this boutique townhouse hotel gives you the impression you are in your own home, albeit much cooler, brighter and tidier. They’ve wafted their playful magic wand to make afternoon tea a festive affair and the outcome? Rudolph on the macaroons, iced chocolate biscuits that look like mini wreaths and the cutest little slices of Christmas cake. Turkey and cranberry, stilton and pear and smoked salmon choux pastries and champagne complete the experience.
Where: The Ampersand Hotel, 10 Harrington Road, London, SW7 3ER
What: Cakes wrapped up
Why: Inside the vast building that is InterContinental Park Lane is Wellington Lounge and a much daintier afternoon tea. We’re big fans of their afternoon tea and even more so now it resembles the great Christmas dinner and named ‘Christmas Unwrapped’. If a champagne, orange and pear liquor cocktail can’t get you excited for the big day then hopefully turkey and stuffing open sandwiches and spiced scones with Cointreau and orange curd will. No? OK the pigs in blankets definitely will. The cakes arrive wrapped in a box; unwrap to find a slice of yule log, mini fruit cake and warm apple pie.
Where: One Hamilton Place, Park Lane, London, W1J 7QY
What: Christmas Pudding Parade
Why: We all know Christmas is a time for overindulgence and what better way to indulge than with a Christmas Pudding Parade? The Montagu at Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill will be serving up spiced ginger cake, snowmen cupcakes, Christmas bells mince pies and rich chocolate logs daily between 12:30pm and 9pm. Or if you need a little more sustenance then order the Festive Afternoon Tea – start with sandwiches and scones and finish with the likes of yule log, ginger cake and white chocolate and cranberry mousse – the perfect way to refuel after Christmas shopping.
Where: 30 Portman Square, London, W1H 7BH
What: Cheese Straws and Chocolate Fudge
Why: Escape the Christmas crowds and head to boutique-hotel The Arch for their festive afternoon tea. They’ve gone all out with roast turkey and cranberry; honey baked ham with piccalilli, Stilton cheese straws; pigs in blankets and smoked salmon and horseradish crème fraîche roulade to start. Followed by sticky ginger cake, cranberry and white chocolate fudge and chocolate yule logs.
Where: 50 Great Cumberland Place, Marble Arch, London, W1H 7FD
What: Festive Cake Trolley
Why: The Capital Hotel are serving up their Great British Afternoon Tea this Christmas which includes the likes of salmon crumpets, mackerel pate sandwiches, Victoria sponge and lemon drizzle, but because it’s Christmas and everyone needs an extra treat they will also be wheeling around their festive trolley which will be full of Christmas cakes and extras!
Where: 22-24 Basil Street, Knightsbridge, London, SW3 1AT
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