What: Not quite a Mad Hatters tea party but there are certainly hats.
New: The Sheraton Grand has teamed up with the world’s oldest hat shop, (Locke & Co) to create a one of a kind afternoon tea. New to the menu, it was our privilege to go and check it out.
Where: The Sheraton Grand Park lane. Piccadilly, Mayfair, W1J 7BX, www.sheratonparklane.com
On the menu: An afternoon tea inspired by hats. A fabulous selection of sandwiches catering for meat eaters as well as those of the vegetarian persuasion. A choice of plain, and warm chocolate and orange scones. Then came the fabulous hats in all their glory. Pastries made to look like one of the famous Lock & Co’s hat designs.
The Look: Sat in the hotel’s iconic Art Deco lounge, with its tall ceilings and green palms, it felt nothing like a snowy day in London. The afternoon tea itself arrived in one of Lock & Co’s very own hat boxes, the hats perched elegantly in the lid, while the sandwiches were stacked abreast in the bottom of the hat box. Bubbles fizzed happily in our flutes, and the steam from our tea rose into the air, the smell of fresh leaves lingering long after it had been poured.
What we ate: The sandwiches; usually a tricky part to conquer in an afternoon tea. Not because the flavours are difficult to get right, ham and cucumber is always going to go down well. Making sure they are not dry or crusty by the time they arrive at a table is of paramount importance, and I’m pleased to say the sandwiches were soft and squidgy with no crusts in sight. I particularly have to praise the vegetarian options, they were yummy, featuring roasted peppers, humous, spinach.
I ate the hats second, not sure if that was the order I was supposed to stick with, but I couldn’t help myself, they just looked amazing. Cutting into them seemed such a shame but shoving it in in one didn’t seem appropriate. The Top Hat was my favourite as it just looked so real, and was expertly made with delicious carrot cake in the middle and surrounded by creamy mascarpone.
The scones shortly followed as soon as we were ready, a soft drawstring hat bag appeared, warm from holding its selection of scones. There of course were plain ones but as an extra twist, chocolate and orange were added into the mix. I particularly appreciated the wait on the scones, so often they come out at the beginning but by the time you get round to eating them they are cold. The extra thought and care behind this tea was evident and very much appreciated.
What we drank: Immediately we were greeted with a glass of Chapel Down, which is made in Kent. To start off the teas we went with the suggested Art Deco blend which was just as great as we were told it would be, after that the choice was not our own. We were presented with a surprise. When chocolate tea was mentioned I wrinkled my nose not quite managing to get my head round it. This is why I love recommendations though, they force you to try things you would normally miss out on. This tea was incredible it somehow smelt and tasted like hot chocolate yet it was tea…I mean magic.
Go with: Who ever you want to treat to this wonderful experience. It’s perfect for when mum comes to town or if you have a special friend visiting from Scotland (as I had).
Final Word: A wonderful setting to spend a glamorous afternoon enjoying someone’s company and a spectacular one of a kind tea. A really awesome collaboration.
Like this? Try These: 10 of the Best Afternoon Teas This Spring
The Sheraton Grand: Park lane Piccadilly, Mayfair, W1J 7BX