Our guest blogger and Afternoon tea date, Gillian Smith, shares her experience having Afternoon G & Tea at Soho Hotel.
The British Isles sometimes seem to have struggled to lay claim to a definitive cuisine… possibly due to our enthusiastic embrace of everyone else’s.
There is one meal break however that over the years has managed to brand itself pretty much successfully as British – afternoon tea!
It’s always been an adaptable feast … enjoyed on a check table cloth on a patch of lush grass during the all-too-brief summer months or (probably more frequently) curled up in front of a fire with a good book to the sound of rain beating down on a roof.
As far as the retail version goes, if you’re concerned about the risk of sitting down in front of a table loaded with crust-curled cucumber sarnies and solid slices of Victoria Sponge may we assuage your fears and direct you toward Refuel at the Soho Hotel where the genre is being quietly redefined.
Smoked salmon and dill crème fresh sandwiches are augmented by roast turkey with port and cranberry compote, along with a less usual crispy goat’s cheese with thyme honey. And yes, you will have access to a cucumber variant, but it’s helped along nicely by chive and cream cheese on basil bread.
Rest assured there are tea and cakes aplenty – sweet treats including Plum and Chestnut Mont Blanc tarts, Pistachio Opera cakes and Cacao and Orange Parfait Domes.
Which segue nicely into the tea-with-a-twist aspect – your Parfait Dome can be complemented by a similarly flavoured but far more invigorating Sipsmith Orange & Cacao cocktail. This is prepared at your table with a flourish by gin maestro and Bar Supervisor Flavio Carvalho. He knows his stuff – a short history of the spirit is included, along with a rundown of the delicate balance of botanicals needed to produce the best gins.
You’re even presented with your own juniper berry to crush and inhale… plus a personal stick of burnt cinnamon to further stimulate the senses. Tea purists are not abandoned to the booze trolley. Leaf-lovers can choose from a number of infusions including Assam, Egyptian Camomile, Green Mao Feng and Jasmine Pearls.
Eager to discover more? Refuel at the Soho Hotel. Afternoon tea… reinvented. Just the pit stop you’re looking for.
📍4 Richmond Buildings W1D 3DH
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