Afternoon tea, a quintessentially British past-time, first introduced in England by Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, in the year 1840.
As the evening meal in her household was served fashionably late at eight o’clock , leaving a long period of time between lunch and dinner, the Duchess would become hungry around four o’clock in the afternoon and asked that a tray of tea, bread and butter and cake be brought to her room during the late afternoon. This became a habit of hers and she began inviting friends to join her – and thus afternoon tea was born. Source
But enough of the history lesson, here’s the low down on whether the crème de la crème of afternoon tea is worth its £80 price tag. And as a self-proclaimed afternoon-tea connoisseur, having had afternoon tea at the Ritz twice, I feel this qualifies as an expert opinion.
While it’s easy to feel a little out of place in a room that’s dripping in red and gold, with ornate silverware and diners who eat caviar for breakfast, remember to #FuckTheHaters and be the princess (or prince) that you are.
Good. Now that’s out the way…
“Servings of delicate finger sandwiches, delicious pastries, mouth-watering cakes and freshly made scones with Cornish clotted cream and strawberry preserve whilst listening to the glorious sounds of The Ritz choir singing carols.”
When the sandwiches have been scoffed, they’ll replenish your plate. When your tea has been drunk, they’ll refill your cup. Even with the cakes untouched, more cake will be offered. While sadly you’re unable to take food away in a ‘doggy bag’, you can truly channel your inner Bruce Bogtrotter and eat and drink to your hearts content. So a word to the wise – pace yourself!
Tables are offered at 1:30pm, 3:30pm, 5:30pm and 7:30pm sittings, with each adult receiving a glass of Ritz Champagne and each child a Ritz teddy bear.
Entertained by the Ritz’s very own choir, it’s true you’ll have an unforgettable experience, ‘that you will reminisce for a lifetime’. In fact, the reason for this second visit is because my Mum has insisted on returning almost every day since we first dined three years ago!