What can I say about today? Well, I have been terribly spoiled by my lovely husband to an unexpected Valentines treat. The last few valentines have been rather low key as we do wonderful things throughout the year, but we still mark the occasion. I have always enjoyed cream teas and over the last couple of years, we have enjoyed high tea in a few places - this time we went to The Ritz, which was unexpected and exciting.
Afternoon tea was held in the the Palm Rooms, which was unearthly beautiful and elegant. I felt so overwhelmed by the decor, mirrors, the scent of flowers and the sheer elegance of the place. As we sat at our pretty little table, we had an array of beautiful pale green, gold and white china in front of us such as tea cups and saucers, plates and pots containing clotted cream and preserves. We had a very elegant menu of loose leaf teas to select from - We selected Oolong and Darjeeling first blush teas - both were so lovely - no milk or sugar were required. They all turned up in silver tea pots, with silver milk jugs and water - it looked so lovely.
Then came the food, in beautiful 3 tiered serving plates - the bottom layer with an array of finger sandwiches, the middle section with freshly baked scones and the top section with an array of fine cakes. As my husband is a vegetarian, they bought along a separate plate of sandwiches for him.
The sandwiches were divine - definitely good quality ingredients, with the flavours being well balanced and some of the best I have tasted. My favourites were the Salmon and lemon butter and cucumber with cream cheese, chives and dill sandwiches. The scones were delicious and fresh and eating them were incredibly pleasurable - but I was beginning to feel very full. However, there was more to come, even though we politely declined another serving of cakes and sandwiches! The pastry cart came along which had a lovely vanilla yogurt with fresh and and tender rhubarb, which was exquisite - then a choice of lemon drizzle and coffee cake! I could not finish them all and could not take them with us, but the waiters were lovely and encouraged me to take my time and try a little of each thing. My husband said that the coffee cake was delicious - it had pecans in them. My lemon drizzle cake was also very delicious and then I worked my way through the cakes on the tray. Mark enjoyed a cream slice and a chocolate slice, whilst I enjoyed a chocolate slice as well, which was incredibly rich and sumptuous and a most interesting (and extremely delicious) macaroon. It had the raspberry macaroon base, with a little bit of berry coulis and white chocolate in the middle, and a lemon cream at the top - it was most refreshing.
The whole experience was perfect and exquisite. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and to be in such an elegant and wonderful atmosphere - not forgetting the beautiful piano playing in the background, which played a surprisingly good array of tunes from classics - such as Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata to a song by Evanescence! The waiters were impeccably dressed and very polite and helpful and, of course, attentative. They replaced hot water for the tea and also bought us refills of tea for us and regularly asked if we needed any assistance.
Re: photo taking, as long as you are being discreet, it is fine. A waiter kindly took a photo of us. which was lovely.
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