Afternoon Tea is one of my favourite things to do in London. Dainty sandwiches, luxurious little cakes, loose-leaf tea, and perhaps a champagne treat, is there a better combination?? Prêt-à-Portea at The Berkeley takes all these great things and adds a clever fashionista twist to make it irresistible. It’s always been fully booked when I’ve tried to book so when I got an email for ‘The Royal Collection’, a special Diamond Jubilee edition, it was booked in an instant.
As the official Diamond Jubilee weekend approached, last Wednesday me and Lynn (a fellow Afternoon Tea admirer) got dressed up and Royal-ready for a luxurious late afternoon treat. It was a lovely sunny day and an experience which definitely didn’t disappoint! As you’ll see from the pictures, fashion inspires every detail making it a treat to remember.
Led by Afternoon Tea tradition, it’s a savoury starter with a selection of sandwiches. If you don’t have much of a sweet tooth they do ask if you’d like extra so don’t be shy about ordering a second plate.
Then the centre of the show arrives on a beautiful Paul Smith cake stand, to match the lovely Paul Smith china.
At the bottom there are extra savouries of taster spoons and canapés. Then you move on to the sweet stuff, the best part in my opinion!
There’s a great attention to detail in these pieces. On this plate there was the Queen’s Launer London Handbag, the Queen’s pink hat worn to Canada and a Rachel Trevor-Morgan hat, and Princess Beatrice’s infamous Philip Treacy hat. You can find out what the delicious fillings were on the menu.
As you would expect you couldn’t have a Royal Afternoon Tea without reference to Kate Middleton and this was probably my favourite dessert. The Duchess’s Canada hat was a rich vanilla panna cotta and strawberry jelly topped with red macaroon. It looks very similar to the hat she wore at yesterday’s River Pageant (see it here).
They present only one of each in the first round but there’s no need to fight over your favourites as they’re happy to bring out extra plates. If your eyes are bigger than your belly (or you want to sneak a little treat to someone back home) they do allow you to take a few leftovers home in this stylish bag.
Afternoon Tea wouldn’t be complete without the tea, I try to sample something different and went for Pear Caramel tea. It was a refreshing change to my usual cuppa.
I think you’ll have guessed by now that this is definitely a luxurious sweet tooth satisfaction and you’ll need to part with at least £39 (£49 to add a glass of champagne). I do think it’s worth every pound as it’s a great experience. You get something a little different, with attentive service, fresh tea, a good amount of sweet and savouries, and a five-star London hotel setting.
Do you enjoy Afternoon Tea? Where has been your favourite Afternoon Tea experience?