Wednesday 3 January 2024

Dorchester Christmas afternoon tea - Park Lane London

 My last afternoon tea for 2023 was at the famous Dorchester Hotel on Park lane. This is one I have been wanting to go too for years but it is so expensive. Luckily of me my daughter and husband got me a voucher for my birthday for a Champagne afternoon tea there for two.   Of course my husband insisted he went with me !!!!

It is priced at £135 each for the Festive tea with a glass of Champagne which has to be the most expensive afternoon tea I have been to so far !!!  The standard Champagne afternoon tea is £30 less so they are just charging more as its Christmas time. 

Was it worth it ?  You need to read this blog to find out ........

From the outside of the hotel I thought it would be bigger and more grand but once inside I was impressed 

The reception had a large crystal chandelier hanging down next to a large Christmas tree 

The floors were very shinny and there were more smaller Christmas trees along the sides leading to the famous Promenade where the afternoon tea is served. 

We arrived early so our table was not ready yet so we waited in the foyer which had pale green velvet sofas with pink cushions. 

I went to check out the bathrooms which were large inside and impressive. there was a seating area with dressing table and mirrors to check hair and make up.  The hand soap and hand cream was in a silver metal pump bottle so you could not tell if it was an expensive brand of not. This is something I always like to check out in the hotels bathrooms. 

Once our table was ready we were escorted along the finely decorated corridor called the Promenade to our table that was near the end and close to the silver piano. There was a man playing the piano and singing plus another man playing on a double base. They played some lovely songs throughout the afternoon tea service. 

Our table was nicely laid with crisp white tablecloth and napkins. The china was white and pink and there was a small vase of fresh flowers on each table.

The menu was handed to us and were  offered still or sparkling bottled water.  I felt it was too posh to ask for tap water so we ended up paying £9 for a bottle of still water. 

Our waiter asked us if we had any allergies and if we wanted the afternoon tea with a glass of Champagne. I explained that I did not like fish so could I have an extra turkey sandwich instead. 

We were poured a large glass of Champagne each which went down well whist deciding on what teas to order. I thought the  herbal tea section on the menu was small and not much choice. 

When the sandwiches arrived they looked very nice and we got our own plate of 5 finger sandwiches and a tiny beetroot and and brie tart that was very nice. All the sandwiches were nice and fresh with lots of fillings. When asked if we wanted anymore I asked for more turkey and cranberry ones and the egg one. My hubby got 2 more Salmon ones.  

After eating all the sandwiches the waiter arrived with a little ice cream dessert as a palate cleanser. 

It was tiny but extremely nice and refreshing.

It had an unusual rose flavor and filled with ice cream that I think was Earl Gray Tea flavor. 

All I know is that we both thought it was lovely and could of easily eat another one. 

After this the waiter brought out the scones and accomplishments plus a tray of nice looking cakes.

The scones were still warm and we got a fruit one and plain one each. They were nice and shinny on top and well risen. 

To go with them we got a large dish of clotted cream and two different jams. A Strawberry one and then a cherry one which I liked the best. 

I ordered a cappuccino and my husband some more tea. When the waiter brought over a fresh teacup and saucer my husband said the old one was fine to use which the waiter replied  'Its not a problem you are  at the Dorchester' !!!!

My coffee arrived in a large cup and it was piping hot and very nice with a creamy milk froth. 

By now we were feeling a bit full and wishing we had not had the extra sandwiches offered to us.

The cakes were the last thing to eat and we got four different ones each. I did not think they looked very Christmassy in the decoration 

The first one we had was spiced fruit tart on the right. This was a thin crisp pastry base filled with spiced sweet mincemeat and topped with a brandy light whipped cream. It was supposed to have lemon curd but I do not remember tasting this however it was very rich and nice. 

Next was the red topped one, Grapefruit and Champagne. I liked this one a lot as the Grapefruit was very sharpe with the Champagne and the yogurt mousse cream complimented this. 

Then we had the wreath shaped one that was a profiterole with pistachio cream and red berry fruit. 

I liked the flavors of this and the pistachios made it crunchy on top.

Lastly we had just enough room to eat the final cake. This was called Mont Blanc and made of a Chestnut cream filled meringue. Nice but not my favorite

We asked the waiter for the bill and I noticed that he had given the other tables a little green tin each with the bill. We did not get this so I had to ask him and he apologized and then brought us out a small boxed tin each. It contained a little iced fruit cake which I thought was a nice gesture. 

Upon paying for the bill there was a small confusion over the value of the voucher I got for my birthday and they did not deduct the correct amount off the bill. We did not realize until after paying and spoke to a manager who said she would refund the difference back to our card after New Year. 

We did not think this was very professional for the hotel to get the bill wrong and having to wait for the credit to our card. 

Overall the setting and music was lovely and we got good service. however I have been to other hotels that are much cheaper and received just as good service and food.  

Nearest Station : Green Park station - about 15 minute walk
Best bits : The little ice cream palate cleanser  and the fresh sandwiches with the little beetroot tart    
Worst bits : Probably that they got the bill wrong at the end.   
Value for money :  No I think there are just as good afternoon teas out there for less money.
would I go back? : Sorry no probably not but glad I have experienced it .



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