To be sick of "afternoon tea"?

(98 Posts)
Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 17:05:20

It's gone the same way as cupcakes and "shabby chic" hasn't it?

Afternoon Tea used to be naice.. It's used to be treat but now the world and his wife has jumped on the decking bandwagon.. It's a total rip off and is usually toss

For example.. Hotel today. Country type place, not uber posh but nice.

2 fingers of cheese and pickle sandwiches and 2 fingers of egg.

A one bite sized plain scone

A piece of dry ginger cake

2 petite four sized pieces of short bread.


This is not afternoon tea. It's piss.

It seems that every fecking cafe/bar/hotel now serves afternoon tea to fill the void space between lunch and dinner. £20 for 2 slices of bread, a scone and a piece of cake... You just wouldn't would you? Well no, not if it was served on a plate... But hey stick it on a fancy tiered cake stand and you can charge what you like.

Robbing bastards.

never again

Rant over grin

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Mon 06-May-13 17:07:38

More fool you...pack a picnic and get real. "Naice" indeed. If you want a better standard, choose better establishments.

Get your self a McDonalds grin

Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 17:10:05

The weather is shit in Scotland but thanks... I'll bear that in mindwink

And that's the thing.. Even the "better" establishments aren't much to write home about. It's still £££ for a couple of sandwiches and a cake but, as per the point I was making 3 x the normal cost because its on a tiered stand.

DribbleWiper Mon 06-May-13 17:10:51

Bet tea at the Ritz is still naice! Yum. I always think there're too many cakes involved and not enough sandwiches. No good if you're hungry and don't want to eventually vomit.

This is not afternoon tea. It's piss. Love this phrase!

Tailtwister Mon 06-May-13 17:11:53

YANBU, it doesn't seem like much for £20!

Takver Mon 06-May-13 17:14:42

I reckon you need to go upmarket or down, IYSWIM. So, either cheap caff where you'll get a decent mug of tea and a slab of cake, or else the Ritz.

Same as breakfast, shite in anywhere middle market, great in a greasy spoon, fabulous somewhere properly posh.

Laquila Mon 06-May-13 17:26:46

Takver this is a good point.

Afternoon tea at the Wolseley is lovely (about £20 I think), but I've paid the same price elsewhere for a couple of curling-up sandwiches and some dried-out sponge cake.

I reckon high tea is the way to go...basically a buffet made up (at home) of everything you're trying to get rid of as well as things like sausage rolls, cold cuts, cheeses, hard-boiled eggs, scones, fruit cake, thick white bread and butter, crumpets's basically 15 meals in one. Hmmmm off to cobble together some kind of high tea.

Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 17:27:16

The Ritz is a wee bit far from Glasgow.. grin

Whilst the tea we had today was toss, I guess it's more the general principle of it... Same as charging £4 for a teeny wee cup cake with 3 tons of icing.

A sandwich a scone and a couple of cakes should not cost £20-£30, but these days people pay it on the pretence that because its on a fecking stand

I should add I have total PMT grin

I lurve afternoon tea if it is done properly - I too would have been piddled off about dry cake and curly sandwiches.

We received vouchers from Fortnum's when they fecked up our Christmas order a couple of years ago. We went along and had the most magnificent tea - with beautiful old silver tea pots and cake stands - there was so much gorgeous grub I was forcing it down by the end. grin

The staff were wonderful too - sweeping around and arranging things with little flicks of their wrists; they were so obliging, one nearly lay down so I could walk over him on the way out.*

And it was all free.

<< burp >>





* this is a lie

Takver Mon 06-May-13 17:42:21

I will admit that my views on the Ritz are based entirely on what people tell me, being more of a greasy spoon gal myself grin

Should you ever come to Pembrokeshire, I can point you in the direction of some excellent cakes, no stands admittedly, but also not twenty quid . . .

squoosh Mon 06-May-13 18:01:06

I'd take cake in sunny Pembrokeshire above afternoon tea in The Ritz any day of the week.

PandaNot Mon 06-May-13 18:06:03

Now I have had tea at the Ritz and it is amazing and worth every penny.

squoosh Mon 06-May-13 18:07:37

I have had tea at Claridges, that too was amazing. But yes every crappy restaurant/tea room is jumping on the bandwagon.

Tee2072 Mon 06-May-13 18:11:31

When I was last in London I had a gorgeous afternoon tea with several MNetters at, I think, a Hilton. We got a Groupon deal so wasn't horribly expensive and was a few sandwiches but piles of cake, including the plate some of the cake sitting on being made of...chocolate.

::ded from the memory::

hermioneweasley Mon 06-May-13 18:15:00

£20! They saw you coming! YABU to tarnish all afternoon teas because of this establishment.

BlackDahlia11 Mon 06-May-13 18:15:45

Eteaket in Edinburgh is the best value afternoon tea I've had. 4 nice filled triangle sandwiches, massive scone with jam and cream, and set of mini cakes plus tea. Was £15. I couldn't finish the cakes so took them home grin

I think some places don't really try though. Just something else to add to their menu. Not very good quality at times.

miffybun73 Mon 06-May-13 18:18:00

Know what you mean OP. Real Afternoon Tea can be lovely, but is equally likely to be PISS grin

Takver Mon 06-May-13 18:40:11

It is particularly sunny today, Squoosh grin

Bettys in York/Harrogate do a proper tea. I'm horrified you only got cheese and pickle and egg sandwiches! What about naice ham? shock

Bogeyface Mon 06-May-13 18:55:49

I can recommend a place in the East Mids if any one is interested! Proper sandwiches, HUGE scone with jam and clotted cream and a large slice of freshly made cake. Pot of tea with 3 cups worth in it. At £12 it isnt the cheapest but it is gorgeous!

BrianButterfield Mon 06-May-13 18:56:12

I was about to say Betty's - not cheap but you're always STUFFED by the end and certainly don't need dinner afterwards.

YoniRanger Mon 06-May-13 18:56:40

YABU our local Michelin star restaurant does amazing afternoon tea for £20.

Choose better establishments!

AngelsWithSilverWings Mon 06-May-13 19:00:35

I love tea at Claridges. They just keep bringing the food until you can eat no more!

Made the mistake once of opting for a cheaper afternoon tea at a different restaurant .We had to order and pay for more food to fill us up and ended up paying more than if we had gone to Claridges.

maddening Mon 06-May-13 19:03:08

we had a fabulous one with unlimited sandwiches and scones and tea/coffee/juice and a plate of French fancies and pastries and a glass of champagne and strawberries and cream for £28

English breakfast (veggie ) an cream teas are my fave treats.

ParadiseChick Mon 06-May-13 19:09:21

Get yourself to the Willow Tea Rooms, they've been doing high since before it was shabby chic and retro.

ParadiseChick Mon 06-May-13 19:10:12


Afternoon tea!

HoneyDragon Mon 06-May-13 19:17:35

I made a proper Tea today.

I baked Little cheese and Bacon Tartlets, cheese and marmite straws and an Apple Caramel Cake.

Small pork pies, egg Sandwiches, ham sandwiches, Blt sandwiches, chicken and stuffing and cheese and pickle sandwiches were also present.

Cumber and tomatoes glistened thereabouts

And fresh strawberries. With cream.


I also urge EVERYONE to bake the Waitrose recipe for Caramel Apple Cake. It was fabulous.

janji Mon 06-May-13 19:19:54

Another one to second the Ritz. Amazing service and too many sandwiches, pots of tea & cakes. Every time you get even halfway though finishing any if the items brought forth you are offered more! Warm scones, petit fours, lots of types of tea, the sweet trolley, silverware with clotted cream and jam, your own silver tea strainer and stand....... Been twice last year (last time with champagne at Christmas) and am itching to go back!!

Tuppence2 Mon 06-May-13 19:20:13

Fenwick in Newcastle has gorgeous afternoon tea. I took my friend's dm who was visiting from America as we wanted to do something "English".

4 fingers of sandwich (choice of filling)
A HUGE fruit scone with strawberry jam and clotted cream
3 mini cream cakes (usually strawberry tart, peach melba and a shot glass size trifle)
A glass of pink champagne

£10 per person (and it's all delicious!)

janji Mon 06-May-13 19:20:57

Bogey face, I'm in East Midlands!! Share you're bargain place please?!

StealthOfficialCrispTester Mon 06-May-13 19:26:08

Why do I only hear about these things when they have gone from being bang on trend (see) and passed through the fashionable phase, through acceptably retro and into "been there, done that, dribbled the jam on my T shirt" phase?
<tweaks arrangement of twigs and pebbly shit>
<adjusts the L-O-V-E blocks on the kitchen windowsill>
<realises the creepy wee brackets are probably passé too>

LadyMaryQuiteContrary Mon 06-May-13 19:27:01

Ds and I went to thea caffea in Nottingham yesterday and it was lovely! If you're heading that way you need to pop in. We've also had afternoon tea in the tree house and Alnwick Castle; that was also lovely. 4 large slices of cake, a pot of tea and sandwiches. I can't remember how much it cost, it was a few years ago. Around a tenner I think.

mrsjay Mon 06-May-13 19:29:01

This is not afternoon tea. It's piss.

has to be the quote of the month grin sorry you had a rubbish sandwich but that made me laugh

Bogeyface Mon 06-May-13 19:29:44


It is Langans in Burton on Trent. It is staffed by people who have been through the local rehab for drug and alcohol abuse, and the profits go to support the centre. So as well as getting a top notch tea, you are supporting a really good cause too smile

IShallCallYouSquishy Mon 06-May-13 19:34:05

I had an amazing afternoon tea last week. Was at a beautiful 5* hotel though ("big" birthday so went posh!) and was worth every penny.

If I wasn't going somewhere like that I think a cream tea would be best option. But... cream first? Ok?

I completely agree though, anywhere that's just your everyday cafe etc, afternoon tea is just wank.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 06-May-13 19:35:02

I'm off to The Ritz next. Month, ill let you know if its naice.

Had a lovely afternoon tea in home town last month. Beautiful sandwiches (three types), cream scones with jam, cake and plum bread. £9.

Bingdweller Mon 06-May-13 19:38:24

geordie you need to get yourself on a train to Edinburgh & sample Loopy Lorna's in the Churchill Theatre for afternoon tea. Bloody gorgeous & a box of goodies to take home as there is always far too much to eat in one sitting!

Almostfifty Mon 06-May-13 19:42:36

Geordie I was in Stewarts Tea Room the other week. Their afternoon tea looked rather lush.

I wish I'd had one. envy

TSSDNCOP Mon 06-May-13 19:43:44

You selected your venue unwisely OP.

Next time head for the Dorchester. Utterly epic. So full you can't eat dinner or indeed breakfast the following day.

MrsPnut Mon 06-May-13 19:47:06

Afternoon tea at the cake shop inn our village is £7.50 each and you get mountains of sandwiches, toasted tea cakes, scones, jam, cream and you can choose your cakes from their selection.

The teapot also never empties and it is just delicious. Last time we went we took huge doggie bags home.

scratchandsniff Mon 06-May-13 19:50:05

I had afternoon tea this weekend at the Waldorf. It was a groupon offer so only about 20 pounds. Plenty of food, but wasn't as good as I thought it would be. There was no atmosphere in the room. I wouldn't pay full price for it. Much rather go for a nice meal.

Almostfifty Mon 06-May-13 19:53:32

My God-daughter makes the afternoon teas at the Dorchester TSSDNCOP. Isn't she talented? grin

gallifrey Mon 06-May-13 19:56:42

we had a champagne afternoon tea at the Grand hotel in Eastbourne and it was £20 a head and it was amazing!

LauraPashley Mon 06-May-13 19:59:35

Geordieminx can you name and shame where you were?!! I haven't been for a few years but one Devonshire gardens afternoon tea used to be amazing. And was £16 3yrs ago!

apostropheuse Mon 06-May-13 19:59:52

OP apparently Miss Cranston's - The Willow Tea Rooms - in Glasgow do a lovely afternoon tea. I haven't tried it myself, but I do intend to.

They charge £12.75 - you can buy gift vouchers online for it, hence my knowing the price!

MadBusLady Mon 06-May-13 20:01:06

I take my mum to the Athenaeum on Piccadilly for tea for her birthday sometimes. The tea alone is almost worth the steep price - so fragrant and refreshing, I drink gallons of it. Reminds you what you're really drinking in spirit when you dunk a teabag in a mug.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 06-May-13 20:05:38

I love afternoon tea. It's lovely if its done properly. Really, you need to be in England to enjoy good afternoon tea, just like you need to be in Scotland to properly enjoy irn bru and tablet.

miemohrs Mon 06-May-13 20:12:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsPnut Mon 06-May-13 20:14:28

Ooh Madbuslady, we're staying at the Atheneum in 2 weeks time. I might have to book afternoon tea for the Saturday.

Hulababy Mon 06-May-13 20:14:57

We get FAR more than that for Afternoon Tea at the two local places we go, and for less too.

Normally a selection of finger sandwiches (about 3 slices of bread per person, no crusts) with salad garnish and usually a handful of crisps, a proper sized scone each with cream and jam, and 3-4 various slightly smaller cakes each. Plus a large pot of tea. We can NEVER finish it all, not even DH. There is so much cake.

miemohrs Mon 06-May-13 20:15:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RhondaJean Mon 06-May-13 20:16:48

Cup in Glasgow does a lovely afternoon tea.

I was stuffed with it, and I am not a small eater!

TSSDNCOP Mon 06-May-13 20:17:20

Almost she really, really is. Please tell her that in future a tall, blonde guest making small moans of pleasure whilst stuffing cakes at a prodigious rate is in fact me.

thegreylady Mon 06-May-13 20:21:43

If you go to the Camellia in Shrewsbury you pay £10.99 for any two of a range of sandwiches including smoked salmon and cream cheese,turkey brie and cranberry etc, 2 cream scones a huge piece of cake [from a lovely selection] and a pot of tea.If you order a second pot of tea there is ample for two people.

Bringmewineandcake Mon 06-May-13 20:23:18

I had underwhelming afternoon tea this weekend too! It was a Groupon deal which I would no way have paid full price for - 3 mini sliver sandwiches (I did expect them to be small), a very dry fruit scone, a mini eclair, mini croissant, mini choc au pain and a mini choux bun!! Where was my cake?? What's with the breakfast assortment??

Grockle Mon 06-May-13 20:23:59

Oooo, no... here you get:

4 finger sandwiches (usually egg, smoked salmon, ham, cheese)
2 big scones (1 fruit, 1 plain)
4 different bits of cake - sometimes little ones, sometimes decent slices
Plenty of tea
Glass of prosecco

Even better if you can get it on Groupon for 2 for £17

MorrisZapp Mon 06-May-13 20:28:44

Am so excited! Just uploaded my first profile pic after years of membership. It's of afternoon tea, check it out smile

Almostfifty Mon 06-May-13 20:29:25

I'll tell her to look out for you TSSDNCOP! grin

Grockle Mon 06-May-13 20:32:44

Morriss - I can't see your profile sad nosey

3rd post SP suggests maccy d's grin I I don't need to read any further she has taken the words from my mouth.

MorrisZapp Mon 06-May-13 20:37:54

I made sure the piccy wasn't private. Not sure why it's not working sad

Can anybody see my afternoon tea piccy?

MorrisZapp Mon 06-May-13 20:38:47

DP is in it, lurking behind the cakestand smile

thecatfromjapan Mon 06-May-13 20:40:18

I don't think your profile is public, Morris.

MorrisZapp Mon 06-May-13 20:42:52

Doh! Sorted now. All working smile

thecatfromjapan Mon 06-May-13 20:43:52

V. nice.


thecatfromjapan Mon 06-May-13 20:47:23

You know, I've longed to go to Betty's for years and years and years.

Finally, we went camping in the Great North, and it looked as though my dreams of tea at Betty' might be realised!! yay!!!!

Unbelievably, ds had an accident and we ended up spending the holiday in the PICU in a northern hospital.*

I just couldn't believe it. I think I will never get to Betty's. sad

*Won't name it for fear of outing self. The staff were wonderful, though. Really good to all of us.

thecat - not quite the same but Bettys do mail order for some things. Google them. After that ordeal I think you deserve it!

Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 21:25:38

Have been to Eteakat and yes, I agree it was lovely. Have also been to Blythswood Square and although it was about £25 we came away full, impressed with service and ambiance wanker

Cup, yes is also nice as is Chocolate Factory. It was Crutherland house whoever asked.

I just feel too many places are jumping on the band wagon and charging a fortune. I mean what must the mark up be on a couple of slices of sunblessed, some value cheese and a jar or Branston? grin

SkinnybitchWannabe Mon 06-May-13 21:29:14

Theres a 1950s inspired tea room in my village.
Ive not been yet because Im dieting, but it sounds amazing..huge scones and very naughty cakes. I will go at some point, when Im not such a heffer

AnnaBegins Mon 06-May-13 21:39:24

Bogeyface last time I went to Langan's it was rubbish! Beautiful place and nice sandwiches and scones (but they got our sandwich order wrong) but the service was rubbish - having tried to catch someone's eye with no success I actually said "Excuse me" in louder and louder voices to 5 waiters/waitresses with no response before going up to the counter to ask for some service! And the cakes were terrible. Real shame as I thought it'd be lovely to support them sad

Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 21:44:46

Mrs Sloans is rubbish too. Just saying...

thecatfromjapan Mon 06-May-13 21:47:54

NorthernLurker - you are very lovely. And it is a good suggestion. Thank you.

I do really want to sit in a Betty's, though (there are two, I think??? Is that right??).

Never mind. One day.

TiggyD Mon 06-May-13 21:49:06

It's the doilies. By law they have to be hand cut individually by highly skilled doilists. It's not cheap and the cost goes to the end consumer.

Abra1d Mon 06-May-13 21:49:58

There are more like three or four Betty's! Or used to be. Northallerton. Harrogate (my favourite), York and . . . ?

I shouldn't be on this thread on a 5:2 fast day.

Geordieminx Mon 06-May-13 21:54:35

Oh a d for the record... As everyone knows.. It's butter, jam then cream

Although!!! I have just remembered I actually had to ask for butter today and was greatest by a proper eye roll...tosser

ilovesooty Mon 06-May-13 21:59:00

There's a Betty's in Ilkley.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 06-May-13 21:59:18

Harlow Carr has a Bettys.

This may be my natural home <flaunts name around>

I am on a major diet at the moment, my love for scones with yes, butter jam and cream - strawberry jam please, plays no small part in this.

envy at all you eating afternoon tea

Bogeyface Mon 06-May-13 23:40:57

Anna that is weird, every time I have been there it has been perfect sad There have been a couple of times when I have almost had to trip up the waiting staff to get noticed admittedly, but apart from that it was great. I put that down to lack of training (ex-head waitress, so I am quite critical!)!

SconeRhymesWithGone Tue 07-May-13 00:20:15

Another Scone here. smile Last year we had a really good afternoon tea at the Hilton in Glasgow; the food was plentiful, and they had these charming Charles Rennie Macintosh style teapots that I still lust after.

Bogeyface Tue 07-May-13 00:43:58

Scone rhymes with own.

As you were.

Bogeyface Tue 07-May-13 00:44:07


SconeRhymesWithGone Tue 07-May-13 00:54:33

Bogeyface, where I live (Florida), it certainly does rhyme with "own," but I am trying to change that. grin

currentlyconfuseddotcom Tue 07-May-13 01:35:09

Scone rhymes with on

Bogeyface Tue 07-May-13 01:38:52

Scone rhymes with on

It doesn't you know, it really doesn't!

squoosh Tue 07-May-13 01:45:29

The town of Scone is pronounce skooooooooooon.

<no help>

LittleMissLucy Tue 07-May-13 01:48:05

Yes, you need Claridges or the Ritz when the pianist is doing his bit in the middle.

currentlyconfuseddotcom Tue 07-May-13 01:54:09

Bogey do not speak such sacrilege!

AlwaysReadyForABlether Tue 07-May-13 01:57:14

I'm going to York next weekend and plan to spend Saturday afternoon stuffing my face in Betty's. Do you need to queue to get in? I seem to remember hearing something ages ago about huge queues.

LittleMissLucy Tue 07-May-13 02:01:18

If you go early, no lining up. Later it gets, longer the line.
Taylors in the shambles is much nicer - dainty tea pots and a view of the street from timbered rooms.

newyearnewattitude Tue 07-May-13 08:24:53

Actually it's cream and then jam.... It was invented by us Devon folk and only the silly Cornish (and those failing to be authentic dontcha know but failing miserably) do it the backwards way!! It's sacrilege to put cream on last and anyone who does should be shot!!! grin

ExcuseTypos Tue 07-May-13 08:36:44


We've just booked afternoon tea at The Wolseley.

I can't bloody waitgrin

Geordieminx Tue 07-May-13 09:14:31

I think in conclusion.. Posh places are fine.

Every other cafe/hotel/bar/restaurant jumping on the bandwagon charging £20+ for a stale sandwich, a rubbish scone and a couple of biscuits is piss.


But if you put the cream on first you wouldn't get any on your nose and that's half the fun

newyearnewattitude Tue 07-May-13 10:15:43

You obviously aren't putting enough clotted cream on!

I find that is the main problem outside of Devon.... Down there you can buy huge 5lb tubs of it all year round.... When I moved away I was shocked to find only piddly tubs available at stupid prices!! You need at least 2 inches thick of it on each side of the scone.... (and it's also lush on bread as an after school/work treat with the crusty bit of the cream too)

apatchylass Tue 07-May-13 10:22:32

You need to find the nearest Peyton & Byrne. They serve fresh juicy cake - each slice the size of a small independent country, and naice tea - all in at around a fiver.

Wibblypiglikesbananas Tue 07-May-13 12:44:10

I'd like to recommend another two lovely places - The Thatched Cottage in Brockenhurst in the New Forest and the Petersham Hotel in Richmond. Both delicious.

I would like to express my disgust at the afternoon tea place in Chester (which shall remain nameless) where scones were served with squirty cream! Total and utter sacrilege...

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now