Tuesday, 10 May 2022

Copthorne Tara Hotel Groupon afternoon tea - Kensington London


Saturday I took my mum for a bargain afternoon tea using a Groupon voucher. It was a Prosecco afternoon tea for 2 at the great bargain price £23.95. that is under £12 each which is amazing !!!!!!

The normal price is £19 each without the Prosecco

I was not expecting it to be like the posh London hotels but the menu and photos online looked good so decided to give it a go. 


We got a underground train to high street Kensington station and then it was just a 5 minutes walk from there. 

It was a very large modern style hotel that lacked the character of some older posher London hotels but looked ok. The reception area inside was huge and very busy. 

The afternoon tea is served in a lounge area along a corridor. Its small and decorated in floral and bird wallpaper with two small chandeliers handing from the ceiling and some wall lights. 

The tables were laid out with mismatched cups and saucers and plates in a shabby chic style. The napkins were paper and not cloth and we was not given a menu to look at. 

Our waitress asked if we had any allergies and and we said no but informed her that we do not like fish and that my mum no mayonnaise. She asked us what we wanted to drink and we both ordered a cappuccino. 

The coffee was in a large mug and tasted very nice and creamy.

Whilst waiting a few more people arrived for afternoon tea and I wondered if they too had a voucher deal. 

We waited about 25 minutes for the afternoon tea stand to arrive, it was nice shape with oblong plates on the stand. The waitress also brought out a glass of Prosecco each which was disappointing as it was served in a plastic glass !!!!!  It tasted OK but I could not understand the reasons for not serving it in a proper glass. Just did not make sense to me. 

The afternoon tea looked very different from the below photo online from the hotel 

We had to ask the waitress what was in the sandwiches and she said no mayonnaise or fish. I think that there may of been some mayonnaise in the cheese one as it was like the cheese and onion spread you buy in tubs from supermarkets. My mum said it was nice as she could not taste the mayonnaise . The chicken sandwiches were more like chicken pate but tasted nice. We did like all five of the sandwiches and they were fresh and in different types of bread. 

Next we had the fruit scone each was was large and still warm. To go with the scone we got a mini pot of Tiptree strawberry jam  and mini pot of clotted cream each. 

It was a nice scone but nothing special. 

Before tucking into the cakes I ordered an Americano coffee. We got  four different little cakes to share and a tiny glass filled with fresh cream and raspberry coulis each. 

The cakes consisted of  an almond tart, raspberry choux bun, apple cake and a cream fruit gateaux. 

We cut them in half so we could both try them 

They all tasted nice but once again nothing amazing and not sure if made in house or brought in ready made. 

Overall it was a good afternoon tea for £12 however not sure I would feel the same paying £19 each without the Prosecco !!!!!!!

Nearest Station :    High Street Kensington underground  - about 5 minute walk 
Best bits : The sandwiches with different types of bread  
Worst bits :  The Prosecco in a plastic glass,  felt cheap but tasted OK 
Value for money : Yes defiantly if you have the Groupon voucher   
would I go back? :  No I do not think so

Sunday, 24 April 2022

Rabot Hotel chocolate afternoon tea - Borough Market, London

Saturday 23rd April 2022 

Had a lovely afternoon tea today with my mum after a stroll around Borough market . This is my third visit to this restaurant and second afternoon tea here. I had a Buyagift gift voucher for this which cost £49 for two with a glass of Prosecco. The normal price is £35 each plus extra £5 for glass of Prosecco. So by buying the voucher at discount price I got a good deal. 

I like the setting of this restaurant with its outside terrace overlooking the market below.  It also gave  me an excuse to buy some chocolate almond croissants for Sunday morning and some meat pies for dinner. 

When you walk into Rabot there is small busy cafe downstairs and in the corner a display and shop selling the lovely chocolates. The cafe is where you can grab a quick drink including the delicious creamy hot chocolate flavored drinks and snacks. Upstairs is the restaurant and terrace where we were seated for our afternoon tea. 

We was handed the menu and the waiter acknowledge our allergies and dislikes I had mentioned on the booking.

 Egg Mayonnaise Brioche 
 Pea & Tarragon Mousse on Rye Sourdough 
 Gin Salmon, Cream Cheese & Dill Lightly smoked Scottish salmon, 
 Creole Chicken with Pumpkin Mayonnaise 
 Marinated Beef & White Chocolate Horseradish 
Strawberry & Vanilla Cheesecake 
 Chocolate & Cherry Gâteau Opéra 
 Fresh-Baked Sultana Scone & Cinnamon Scone Lavish your way. Strawberry jam, clotted cream or 70% chocolate ganache 
 Tasting Chocolates Ask your server for today’s selection. Accompanied by cacao beans. 

We waited about 20 minutes for the afternoon tea to arrive but did not mind as we chatted away and sipped our proseeco. 

It arrived  on a wooden stand and looked very nice. The sandwiches had been made fresh especially for us without mayonnaise and instead of salmon we got two beef ones each. They made us just plain egg sandwiches and plain chicken ones. I loved the chicken one best as it had little chocolate nibs in which gave it a slight crunch and nutty taste. 
I ordered a cappuccino and my mum tried the hazelnut praline hot chocolate. She said it was nice and made a change from coffee. 

Next we had the scones which were still warm

On the wooden plate were three white pots one with strawberry jam , one clotted cream and third one a chocolate ganache cream which was nice on the scones and not too sweet just very  chocolaty 

After the scones which were lovely I ordered a salted caramel hot chocolate and my mum had a coffee this time. 

With this afternoon tea you only get two very small cakes and two chocolates. However I think the sandwiches and scones are generous in size.  Also we got one chocolate each plus a large chocolate covered shortbread biscuit so could not complain as this was really nice and perfect with my hot chocolate drink which was lush  !!!!!
The two cakes we got each  just could of been a tiny bit bigger as they were really nice and very different from each other in flavor. The biscuit base of the creamy cheesecake had chocolate nibs in and the the cherry cake was a bit like a black forest cake. 

At the end of the tea and the cake stand empty i asked the waiter if we had anything to pay as had given them the voucher ? 
We got a bill just for the second drinks we had, I was not surprised but just think that they could include two drinks each in the price !!!!!!

Overall lovely afternoon tea in a great place 

Nearest Station :     London Bridge - about 5 minute walk however we went to Monument station and walked across London Bridge which took only 9 minutes 
Best bits : Scones with chocolate ganache spread and chicken sandwich plus the location 
Worst bits :  Nothing really apart from charging for second hot drink 
Value for money : Yes with discount voucher but at £35 each I  would want slightly bigger cakes  
would I go back? :  Yes I would 


Sunday, 3 April 2022

Chocoholic Easter Afternoon tea at Podium Hilton Park Lane, London

 This afternoon never fails to disappoint.....It must be around my 6th visit there. I call it the chocolate plate one which I will explain later!!!!!

I went there Friday April fools day and also the first day of their Easter theme afternoon tea. They changed the theme with special occasions and I have also been to the Christmas themed one. 

My friend Michelle came with me and we celebrated her birthday.  The Hotel is large modern and luxurious inside and worthy of the £32 price for the afternoon tea.

We were shown our table and handed the menu https://www.podiumrestaurant.com/pdf/special_events/Easter-AT-Menu-22_20220318.pdf

Our waitress took our drinks order and asked if we had any allergies. I ordered a cappuccino and my friend a pot of breakfast tea. Our waitress Najat was very friendly and enthusiast and could not do enough for us. She made us feel special and relaxed.

First came the sandwiches on separate plates . Mine had no fish  so I got two mini coronation chicken rolls and two egg mayonnaise sandwiches plus a cucumber and cream cheese one . They were very fresh and I liked the little  chicken brioche roll best it was very nice. 

Once we had finished our sandwiches the waitress brought over the cake stand which was oblong in shape . It contained four scones plus six  cakes which looked amazing and very pretty. 

The scones were still warm and we got a plain one each and then we shared a fruit one and a chocolate one by cutting in  half each. As well as the traditional jam and clotted cream we got a pot of salted caramel sauce which tasted delicious on the scones. The scones were lovely and light and fluffy inside. 

We both enjoyed them very much..... 

After ordering another drink we started on the cakes . We cut them in half which seemed a shame as they looked so pretty and a lot of work had gone into making them. I prefer to get two of each types of cake rather than cutting them in half but they were a good size and even I would not of been able to eat whole ones 

All the cakes were really nice but we both thought the panna cotta in half a chocolate egg was lovely and so creamy 

I also liked the Lemon and Blueberry sponge cake with nest on top and the chocolate choux banana bun. 

As it was an Easter theme some of the cakes had chocolate mini eggs one as well as fondant flowers and  chocolate decorations. 

 I almost forgot to explain why I call it the chocolate plate afternoon tea...............

Well the first time I went here with my mum a few years ago the cakes on the top tier sat upon a plate that was made of solid white chocolate with a gold dust. My mum did not believe the plate was made of chocolate until I broke it in half !!!!! It was nice chocolate too.  Evert time I have been there since there is a chocolate plate which is different and goes with the theme at the time. 

This time it was a green chocolate oblong with sugar sprinkled over it 

I had a lovely afternoon at the Podium  chatting to my friend over a wonderful afternoon tea with excellent service from Najat. We did not get offered any more food but I think if we had asked she would of given us some extras. We only just managed to finish the food we had and felt very full after. 

Nearest Station :     Green Park underground - about 8 minute walk
Best bits : Everything but best off all the salted caramel spread on the scones and pretty decorated  cakes 
Worst bits :  Nothing  
Value for money : Yes extremely good value for what we got plus it is a nice hotel 
would I go back? :  Yes defiantly for the Christmas theme one or maybe sooner !!!   

Monday, 28 March 2022

The Stafford hotel afternoon tea for mothers Day - St James Place London

 Saturday  I took my mum to afternoon  tea at the Stafford hotel in St James Place London for her Mothers Day gift. I came across this on the www.afternoontea.co.uk website  and it looked nice and I had not been there before. It was reasonably priced at £45 each. 

Upon arriving at the hotel we had to walk past a lovely garden area outside at the back which was like a courtyard. The hotel was traditional and nicely furnished inside and the afternoon tea is served in the Game Bird restaurant.

Once seated we were handed the menu and asked f we had any allergies. I explained that we did not eat fish and my mum does not like mustard or mayonnaise . We ordered a cappuccino  and a glass of tap water each. 

Afternoon Tea A Journey through St James’s 

H Forman & Son smoked salmon 
Cucumber and cream cheese
 Honey-roast Wiltshire ham and mustard 
Savoury Truffled egg and watercress brioche bun 
 Plain and raisin, whipped clotted cream, strawberry jam Paxton & Whitfield Westcombe Cheddar, soft cheese and chives
Foster & Son’s chocolate shoe horn
 Henry Poole & Co shortbread ‘Tuxedo’ James.
 J. Fox chocolate cigar chocolate and hazelnut mousse
 Floris English strawberry and rose water cupcake 
Lock & Co white chocolate and lime ‘Top Hat’ 
£45 per person 
With a glass of Louis Roederer Collection 242 Champagne £60 per person

The coffee was very nice and I noticed that the restaurant was getting busy. We waited about 15 minutes for the cake stand to arrive 

The cake stand was an oblong shape rather than the traditional round style. My mum got her sandwiches on a separate plate as they made her an egg roll without the mayonnaise and ham without the mustard. 

We got 3 sandwiches each and a little roll . They were nice and fresh but would of been better if some of the sandwiches had brown bread  not just plain white. Also I think they could of given  another sandwich each as looked rather small on the plate 

The middle plate had  2 scones each plus a tiny savory cheese scone. They were freshly baked as still a bit warm. I think they were slightly over baked  as bit dark on top !!!! 

We got a large pot of cream cheese and chive to go with the cheese scone which was very small  and I  would of liked more of them. It was a bit dry as baked too long in oven but tasted nice once topped with the cream cheese. 

The fruit and plain scones were nice but nothing special. 

Whilst eating the scones we ordered another coffee each 

Lastly we tucked into the cakes ...I was disappointed that we only got one of each so had to cut them all in half !!!!

I thought the theme was very good as the cakes resembled  the shops within the St James area near the hotel. On the way to the hotel we passed the J, Fox cigar shop and the Floris perfume shop. The chocolate cigar was extremely chocolaty with a very soft mouse inside . The top hat had a thin shinny dark chocolate coating with a soft white mouse which had a subtle lime flavor. This was my mums favorite.  The shortbread biscuit was nice and the shoe horn was just white chocolate. I think I liked the vanilla cupcake best however I did not get the rose water flavor . The butter ream flower on top was nice but the sponge slightly dry . 

As I ordered another coffee at the end the waitress did offer us some more cakes.. 

I asked if I could  have another cupcake so she brought us two one each.  Its a shame they did not offer us any more sandwiches however I did hear another table ask for some.  To  be honest with you we did not want any extra sandwiches but I think it is always good service to be offered them. 

The overall service and tea was OK but nothing special......

Nearest Station :     Green Park underground - about 6 minute walk
Best bits : The clever theme of the cakes 
Worst bits : The overbaked scones and only one of each cake 
Value for money : No as did not get many sandwiches and cakes on the stand  
would I go back? :  No unless they have a new theme or special offer  

Tuesday, 1 March 2022

Melody restaurant afternoon tea exceeded expectations - St Pauls hotel in Hammersmith , London

 I have decided to go to at least one afternoon tea every month for this year which should not be too hard to do.  January I took my mum to Café Royal for her birthday and for February I went to a lovely afternoon tea at the Melody restaurant in the quaint St Paul's hotel in Hammersmith, London. I got a great deal on this champagne afternoon tea for 2 from Buyagift. it is currently on offer priced at  £49 instead of £76 and then I had a £10 discount code to use so cost me £39 for 2.....which was a bargain as it was very nice indeed. 

The hotel is small and was originally St. Pauls School designed by Alfred Waterhouse in 1884, the architect of the Natural History Museum. St. Pauls was the location of the historic meeting of Eisenhower, Montgomery and Winston Churchill to plan the D Day landings. St Paul's Hotel was also the setting of the 1971 film “Melody”, an international cult film about youth and lost love.

To get inside the hotel we walked through a brick arch with a door to the reception and the other end led out onto a long patio area with outdoor seating . The reception was small and traditional looking inside with a door leading into the Melody restaurant and Whiskey bar. 

The Whisky bar looked amazing with so many different bottles of whisky on shelves and in cabinets . I will defiantly have to bring my husband here at some point.

The restaurant is small inside with about 12 tables and chairs light inside with large windows looking onto the outdoor seating area. It's painted in a light fresh colour scheme with panels  and has a lovely Chandleier hanging down in the middle. 

The waitress seated us by a window and confirmed our allergies with us. The menu did not go into detail of the sandwiches or cakes just the price but it did have a long list of different teas. 

I decided to try the summer berries fruit tea and my mum ordered a cappuccino. A waiter then poured us each a lovey glass of chilled bubbly....not sure what it was but tasted very nice. 

When the tea stand arrived it was very  full and my mum got her sandwiches on separate plate without any mayonnaise. 

There was a cucumber and cream cheese one, chicken, egg mini brioche roll and a crisp bread with beetroot on top. I liked the egg brioche one best. They were nice a fresh and tasty 😋

The scones were very large and we got a cinnamon fruit one each plus a plain one along with a large pot of jam and clotted cream. They were slightly warm still so freshly baked. 

We both thought they were extremely nice and light and fluffy and my mum said that the cinnamon fruit one was one of the bet scones she has had.....I second that.  The only complaint we had was the jam was more like jelly than jam with not much flavour. 

Before tucking into the cakes we ordered a coffee each as I had finished my fruity tea which was I did enjoy. 

There were 6 little cakes each on the top tier and they all looked nice. They consisted of a chocolate cream choux bun, fruit cream tart, mini red coconut Battenberg ,  Lemon macaroon, panna cotto with orange and a very chocolaty ganache black forest slice. They were very different from each other in flavour. I liked them all equally and did not have a favourite.

Throughout our afternoon tea the service was very good and although we did not get offered any extra food I think they would of given us some if we had asked. 

Lovely little hotel and would recommend 

Nearest Station :     Barons Court or Hammersmith   underground - about 10 minute walk
Best bits : The delicious scones and cakes 
Worst bits : The jelly like jam which lacked flavour but that is the only thing
Value for money : Yes defiantly as service very good and plenty of lovely food  
would I go back? : Yes and I think I will take hubby there