Thursday, April 15, 2010

Afternoon Tea @ The Ritz, London

How was it?
Food: 8/10
Service: 10/10

Ambience: 9/10
Value: $$$$



One of the highlights of my trip to Europe earlier this year was afternoon tea at The Ritz Hotel in London. I was quite nervous about booking as they book up very quickly, and a weekend reservation can see a wait of 3 months or more! Luckily I managed to score a table for Smurf & myself on a Tuesday morning. I booked through their online reservation and had to pay a deposit. I then received an email confirmation and another email confirmation closer to the date.


I was in awe the moment I walked in and couldn't wipe that grin off my face! First stop was the cloakroom, second stop was the bathroom. Omg! It was so pretty! I couldn't stop admiring all of it's girly victorian charm. Lots of pink everywhere and with real hand towels (I love real towels) - I have posted some photos of the pretty bathroom at the end of this post :)


The service was immaculate and I think this is what made the experience. From the moment we reached Palm Court, we were treated like royalty. All the service people were men wearing formal tailcoats! Yes, tailcoats! They were all friendly and helpful, and even assisted in taking a photo for us :) There was also a piano player, and you could request a song by writing it on the card on your table!

We chose to have the traditional afternoon tea which was £38.00 per person. It comes with three tiers including sandwiches, scones and sweets with your choice of tea.

Sandwiches: Mature Cheddar Cheese, Chicken, Cucumber, Smoked Salmon, Ham

Egg Mayonnaise and Cress Bridge Roll

The sandwiches were all light and distinct in their own way. They were perfectly cut into neat little rectangles and were a great way to start the meal. I enjoyed the soft roll as well, with the sweet egg mayonaise. They also come around with a platter of sandwiches, so even boys could come and leave satisfied. Actually, I saw a lot of men in there, about 1 quarter of the room was male - I thought that was pretty cool.

Raisin & Apple Scones and Fruit Cake

I was a little bit disappointed that they didn't have plain scones, just because I would have liked to compare them to the ones from The Tea Room. But the freshly baked raisin & apple scones were still delicious. They were made more delicious by the clotted cream and strawberry preserve - mm.. so good!

Strawberry Preserve and Devonshire Clotted Cream


I would still say that the scones from The Tea Room are the best I've had at an afternoon tea. There was also a fruit slice on the same tier as the scones. It was packed with mixed dried fruits and lots of cinammon. I enjoyed it, but I was getting quite full from the sandwiches and the scones and I still had the sweets tier to get through! Luckily there was the beautiful Elderflower tea to assist with the digestion.

Fruit Tart

Onto the sweets! There were six very cute little sweets sitting around the top tier. Almost too pretty to stop photographing and eat! The first one I tried was the fruit tart. I am a huge fan of fruit tarts, have always loved the biscuity base, the custard and fruits covered in sweet fruit glaze. This one was simple and satisfying.

Friand

The friand was gone in two little bites! It was sweet with a distinct almond flavour. It was probably the safest option on the sweets tier, but still good.

Coconut Macaron

I wasn't sure whether this was a macaron or not, but on closer inspection it was! It was a coconut macaron with a chocolate disk cutting through the cream. The macaron was very sweet and I especially loved the flavour, but the texture was not comparable to the ones I tried at Ladurée.

French Vanilla Slice

I loved the flakey pastry and sweet custard of the vanilla slice. However, it's quite hard to eat this whilst trying to be completely lady-like and having crumbs fall on you at the same time!

Raspberry Marble Cake

The marble cake was so pretty and shiny! There were swirls of raspberry and cream inside. The cake itself was light, not too sweet and a little bit tangy.

Ritz Chocolate Cake

I left the Ritz Chocolate Cake til the end. I loved the little personalised 'R' on top of the cake! Unfortunately it was way too rich, and perhaps I was too full by this point, but I couldn't finish it!

Palm Court

Palm Court

Tailcoats!

Bathroom

Bathroom

(Reminds me of Notting Hill - the movie, everytime I see this!)

Overall:
It's pretty safe to say that I had an amazing time at afternoon tea at The Ritz. I wouldn't say that the food really blew me away, but the service was great and you are made to feel very special. I think it's more of a special occassion restaurant, as we saw a lot of people celebrating birthdays etc. But it's definitely worth it and now, I'm going to aspire to be a lady of leisure so that I can have high tea everyday with my girlfriends!

The Ritz Hotel London
150 Piccadilly,
London W1J 9BR
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7493 8181
Open 7 Days
http://www.theritzlondon.com/tea/

19 comments:

  1. oh wow. very spanky indeed. looks like a gorgeous place for afternoon high tea :-)

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  2. omg AMAZING! It's so beautiful and everything looks impeccable, and there are tailcoats!!! I am so incredibly jealous!!

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  3. Oh wow the raspberry marble cake is just so gorgeous. the Ritz is such a lovely atmosphere for high tea, I am so glad you scooped a reservation.

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  4. Oh - how decadent. And tailcoats to top it all off.
    I like how the guys get sandwiches to munch on - in a manly way, of course

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  5. What a stunning setting. I remember I really wanted to have high tea at the Ritz but I could never find a fellow backpacker who'd want to go! lol. The spread looks amazing and the tailcoats are a lovely touch :)

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  6. Wowwww, this looks stunning! I'd love to be able to go there.

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  7. Ooh this looks like my kind of afternoon tea ;) I love the decor and the silverware, especially that silver teapot! The scones look pretty nice as well

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  8. Lady of leisure, sounds great. I wish you well on your quest.

    This doesn't compare to the afternoon tea's of my childhood that consisted of an apple. So decadent and tasty.

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  9. How fabulous!! What a lovely experience to have....I'm so jealous!

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  10. Those scones look perfect!

    The Ritz was the first place I ever had high tea, years ago when I was living in London. Thanks for the flashback :)

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  11. Wow, what a way to spend an afternoon!

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  12. Wow, this is amazing! I want to go!

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  13. I love your closeup shots of the food - feels like you can reach out and grab a sandwich (unfortunately, I can't cos it's just my computer). The setting and everything is just too perfect, thanks for showing us!

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  14. Ahhh, such class and luxury! Love the interior of the place as much as the food presentation =)

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  15. That looks fantastic Betty! I am surprised that you had to pay a deposit though - I didn't realize restaurants still did that... but anyway, looks like it was all worth it!

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  16. *squeal!* Thanks for taking us along with you! I didn't have time to go here but I wanted to go so this is the next best thing :)

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  17. Urge to eat mass amounts of scones risinnnggg...

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  18. Beautiful! The friand and coconut macaron looks gorgeous - so jealous!

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  19. Hi Simon: It was absolutely gorgeous!

    Hi Steph: I know, I was so excited about the tailcoats!

    Hi Sara: It was such a wonderful experience!

    Hi Tina: Yes, of course. hehe

    Hi Helen: Haha... you should have been more persuasive! lol.

    Hi Kristy: It was amazing! :)

    Hi Jacq: The decor and silverware were just too pretty! Scones weren't bad either!

    Hi Mark: Haha thanks :)

    Hi Brenda: Yes, it was such a lovely experience!

    Hi BuBbles: You're welcome! How lucky of you to have lived in London!

    Hi Y: It was pretty perfect :)

    Hi Valen: You should definitely go!

    Hi OohLookBel: Thank you! You're welcome :)

    Hi Mademoiselle Delicieuse: It's such a beautiful place, I highly recommend it!

    Hi Trissa: It was definitely well worth it!

    Hi Lorraine: Hehe you're welcome! Aww that's so sweet :D

    Hi FFichiban: hehe cave in to that urge, I say.

    Hi Elaine: Everything was so pretty! Hehe

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