Afternoon tea is one of my all-time favourite treats, but it's definitely something I tend to treat other people to, rather than self-indulge in. When the AB's mum was recently in London we took her to The Wolseley for afternoon tea. It was the first time, I was meeting her so I had to pull out all the stops to impress, but I didn't really have to because she was so lovely, and also because I don't think I know anyone who wouldn't be seduced by the grandeur of the restaurant's decor.
Afternoon tea is served daily between 3.30pm - 6.30pm, and Saturdays 3.30pm - 5.30pm. There are two options:
- "Cream Afternoon Tea" priced at £9.75: includes fruit scones with home made jam and clotted cream and a choice of tea
- "Afternoon Tea" priced at £19.75: includes everything in the Cream Afternoon Tea menu plus an assortment of finger sandwiches and selection of pastries
We went with the Afternoon Tea, which was beautifully presented on a metal three tiered stand. The scones were hot, crumbly and moist. The dainty cake selection were too pretty to eat included mini lemon tarts, macaroons and chocolate ganache. The finger sandwiches were equally moreish - who would have thought cucumber and butter on white bread could taste so good.
In keeping with the grandeur of the decor, tea is served in a silver tea pot accompanied by a silver tea strainer and china cups and saucers. The selection included a choice of The Wolseley Afternoon Blend, English Breakfast, Earl Grey, Darjeeling, Ceylon, Assam, Jasmine and Green, which was topped up regularly by the ever attentive staff.
The Wolsely is very popular with celebrities, who love its understated and discreet ambiance. It has a strict no photography policy, so I wasn't able to take any picture of the afternoon tea we enjoyed, apart from the embarrassingly blurred number, but trust me it was delicious at £19.75 a relatively affordable indulgence.
Verdict: With its low level lighting and dark interior, The Wolseley's beautifully restored Art Deco interior harks back to a bygone era of elegance, tradition and romance. I've been here for breakfast, afternoon tea and lunch, and I can safely say the food isn't bad either. Boys, if you haven't decided where to take your beau on St Valentine's, this should definitely be on your shortlist of places to call.