I promised myself I would start 2018 as I meant to go on and if that meant Afternoon Tea at the Ritz, then so be it. (Spoiler, nothing has really come close to it in the two weeks since).
The Ritz is an institution of tea, brioche sandwiches and homemade cakes, its only competitor being the likes of Claridge’s. If you do plan to go, I would recommend booking it, and booking it early as, although they have four sittings a day, it is extremely popular.
We arrived a little early due to the Mayor’s New Year’s Parade and were seated in the lounge which allowed me some time to take some sneaky photos. Photography is allowed but you’re asked to take your shots discreetly.
The foyer and hallway still had their Christmas decorations up which were still as magical as they were before the holiday. When it was our time for tea, we were called up and seated in the infamous Palm Room, one of the most ornate dining rooms I’ve ever stepped foot into.
Our waiter, Sebastian, gave us a lowdown on all that was before us, made sure we were properly seated and happy. We got a beautiful table right beside the water fountain and gave us a good view of all the other diners.
We started with champagne (I feel snobby even saying this) and tea before they brought out the most delicious sandwiches you could imagine.
There was cheese on tomato bread, relish, egg mayonnaise (which I don’t even like and they managed to make it the most delicious thing ever made), salmon on brioche, I can’t quite remember all of it, it was wolfed down very quickly (we were really, really hungry!)
Included with that were orange macaroons, chocolate mousse, and the tiniest apple tarts you could imagine. Our plates were constantly replenished with more sandwiches and cakes until we didn’t think we could eat anymore – then the scones arrived. I wish I had taken photos of these but they were second only to my mother’s own. They were served warm with clotted cream and jam and just like the rest of the food, it just kept coming. Lastly, you were offered a slice of chocolate cake (!!) or warm apple tart. And yes, you were offered seconds.
But what really captured our imagination was the decor
Even the bathroom had aesthetic
It really was something else. The service was second to none, the decor was incredible and the food kept us going long past dinner (and we were stuck in the airport for the rest of the afternoon!). Two champagne afternoon teas and a traditional tea came to £212 – includes a souvenir menu – so if you do want to come here for a day out, definitely save your cash.