London: A Classic Afternoon Tea at Claridge’s

While in London, I visited two afternoon tea spots I had already tried before (Fortnum & Mason and The Berkeley). These teas are both old favorites of mine, and I pretty much could not resist them. But, of course, I also wanted to try something a bit new, and Claridge’s had long been on my list. So, to Mayfair I went.

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Everything about Claridge’s feels classic, from their Tiffany blue striped china to their elegant, art deco dining room to the live musician who plays while you sip your tea. I felt like the whole experience was so refined and thoughtful; they really seem to pay attention to each little detail, and they made me feel much, much fancier than I actually am.

I opted to start with a glass of brut champagne (because, #treatyoself). For my tea, I had to choose the Claridge’s Blend. As the menu describes: “The blend has a unique depth of flavour that combines the power of an English Breakfast Tea with a satisfying complexity. The flavour is rich and aromatic with a deep, malty finish. Perfect served without milk, partnered by a fresh warm scone.” Well, alright then.

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Of the sandwiches – egg, smoked salmon, cucumber, chicken, and ham – two were my favorites: the chicken and the smoked salmon. The salmon had a butter with it that was so airy and rich. Delicious!

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My favorite part of the tea at Claridge’s had to be the scones. They were, quite simply, possibly the best scones I’ve ever tried at a tea. Perfection! And would you just look at that cream.

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And then, of course, there were the desserts. An apple and quince tartlet made with puff pastry and hazelnut frangipan:

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A chestnut financier with lemon and Earl Grey Chantilly cream:

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A dark chocolate mousse with salted caramel ganache:

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And last but not least, a vanilla and cherry choux with bourbon vanilla cream and cherry compote. This was, perhaps surprisingly given that one of the other desserts involved salted caramel, my favorite of the bunch.

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The Bottom Line: I found myself really lingering over my tea at Claridge’s, long after I had eaten the last morsel of pastry. It was a lovely afternoon, and I have definitely found a new favorite to add to my ever-growing rotation of London teas.

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