Let’s face it, England just wouldn’t function without tea. We all love it, we all need it, we all crave it, because it is the oil that lubricates the Great British machine. Now there’s a metaphor! With the Diamond Jubilee just around the corner, what better way would there be to celebrate than by enjoying a nice cup of tea in one of London’s beloved tea rooms? I’ve given a few examples of where to have tea in London before but we really are spoilt for choice so it would be rude not to show you another handful worth checking out…
Voted as the best afternoon tea of 2012 by none other than the Tea Guild, the Athenaeum Hotel offers a wide selection of teas with friendly, clued-up staff to tell you all about them and recommend something special. In addition to excellent tea and service, there are also plenty of cakes, sandwiches and other treats to enjoy with your drink, and the venue is both comfortable and picturesque. This year you can do no better.
If you have tea in a 5-star hotel then it better be good. Fortunately the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington puts its tea where your money is and delivers. Booking is essential but can be done online and while this may be a little more expensive than the casual tea drinker is used to, you certainly get your money’s worth. As well as a huge selection of the finest teas, you also get a nice assortment of sandwiches, scones, cakes and pastries, and even a glass of champagne if you’re in the mood.
If the Royal Garden is little steep for you then you may prefer to try the afternoon tea at Dean Street Townhouse, a more affordable alternative that also lets you enjoy your tea in comfort. Along with their own Townhouse tea you also get a nice selection of sandwiches and appealingly old-fashioned cakes, as well as a high tea menu with a decent choice of savoury snacks.
The Modern Pantry is a place that seeks to live up to its name, with the aim of providing a more modern take on the traditional British teatime. Relaxed, laid back, friendly and up to date, the Modern Pantry provides a decent selection of tea but the real attraction is the eccentric food on offer, which is where the modern aspect really comes in. Sandwiches and cakes are all present and correct, only these ones contain more experimental ingredients such as roast tomatoes, marinated feta and polenta. Accessible to all and it can really offer you something new.
Of course, this is just a tiny handful of what London has to offer. In fact, when you consider how big London is and how many tea shops there are, it isn’t even a handful. More like a nailful. On your little finger. There are a lot of tea rooms out there just begging for your attention so get out there, look around and drink lots of tea!