High tea in London

Sep 15th, 2013, 09:40 PM
  #1  
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High tea in London

I'm visiting London for 10 days in Oct. and although I've been there a number of times I've yet to experience a proper high tea. I would like some suggestions for somewhere not terribly formal since I'll be going alone and want to feel comfortable. I can get around the city pretty easily so location is not an issue. Thanks for any ideas.
lshluvslondon3 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2013, 09:46 PM
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You might find this helpful: http://www.afternoontea.co.uk/top-af...-winners-2013/
sparkchaser is offline  
Sep 15th, 2013, 10:26 PM
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Do you really mean "a proper high tea"? This might strike some as pedantic, but to many of us high tea is a real meal we'ved been indulging in on and off for the past half century and more or less unavailable in central London.

The Dean Street Townhouse does offer it: you can get proper high tea staples like buck rarebit, macaroni cheese and fish fingers in mid-afternoon just as if we were back in the mid-1950 in a proper department store restaurant. Virtually nowhere else in the centre does, though.

If you're interested in that ghastly faux version of tea in the afternoon that features on soaps like Downton, Sparkchaser's list is a perfect list of places anyone wanting somewhere "not terribly formal " would kill their mother to avoid, and the precise reason most of regard the invention as a tourist industry ripoff.

For the kind of mid-afternoon cakes and sandwiches walkers have after 15 miles across fields, or people take their aunties to: High Teas of Highgate, the Maids of Honour at Kew or anything at http://www.timeout.com/london/food-d...teas-in-london
flanneruk is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 04:58 AM
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Thanks so very much sparkchaser and flanneruk for your suggestions and links as well as your quick response to my question. That's why posted the question, hoping that someone local would steer me away from a "tourist industry ripoff". I have a few weeks to do a little research. Thanks.
lshluvslondon3 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 06:41 AM
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If they call it high tea you can be pretty sure that it's "tourist industry ripoff"


Try the afternoon tea at the Wolseley. Book well in advance.
Tulips is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 07:24 AM
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I had an excellent afternoon tea at Brown's Hotel, neither faux nor ghastly and certainly pre-dating Downton Abbey by about two decades.

Virginia Wade was seated next to me, lots of faux? Brit accents around the room, no doubt clueless tourists like me.

It was a wonderful afternoon and just the thing if you don't want a large meal before the theater.
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 09:09 AM
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Afternoon tea at Fortnum & Mason is wonderful. They offer a lovely setting and a piano player. Also prompt to offer more tea and sandwiches. Service is impeccable.
lateinlifetraveler is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 09:32 AM
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This looks lovely:
http://www.fairmont.com/savoy-london...g/thamesfoyer/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAQqQs7m_8Q&feature=plcp

We didn't have tea but it looked wonderful there.
Tabernash2 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 04:45 PM
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Thank you for all of your lovely replies. They all look so wonderful and the menus sound delicious - no reason to limit myself to just one eh?
lshluvslondon3 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 06:29 PM
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I thought "High Tea" was more of a supper, and "afternoon tea" a bit of a very high priced snack. Note that the Fairmont is charging £45 for your snack.
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 06:33 PM
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Ishloveslondon3,

Good for you going solo to tea in London. You will get excellent suggestions here. What other solo adventures are you planning?
latedaytraveler is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 09:12 PM
  #12  
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Thanks FraDiovolo I will pass on a £45 afternoon tea considering the USD exchange rate. Latedaytraveler, this about my 12th solo trip to London (yes I'm an Anglophile.) After going a few times with family and friends and visiting most of the "must see" tourist sights I decided I enjoy things that others may find boring like wondering through neighborhoods taking in the architecture and window boxes, shopping all the street markets and auctions and making side trips to villages outside of London. Also have taken a few day trips to Paris via Eurostar. I usually eat take away meals in hotel room or grab something from Tesco or M&S. So I'm feeling the need for a nice afternoon tea.
lshluvslondon3 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2013, 10:59 PM
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>>I thought "High Tea" was more of a supper, and "afternoon tea" a bit of a very high priced snack. Note that the Fairmont is charging £45 for your snack.<<

And afternoon tea can cost more than that. But is most definitely is NOT a 'snack'.

Sure it is composed of small plates (Scones/preserves/clotted cream, finger sandwiches, pastries and more . . . plus champagne if you are so inclined. But at the high end/posh hotels the food just keeps coming. On days that I take afternoon tea I usually book for a late sitting and skip both lunch and dinner. Might have a late supper after the theatre - but if not that 'snack' tea was a very full meal.
janisj is online now  
Sep 17th, 2013, 03:21 AM
  #14  
 
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I had lunch at Momo a couple of months ago and saw them serving a British meets north African afternoon tea that looked very good. Another one for your shortlist perhaps...

http://momoresto.com/fileadmin/momo/...ernoon_TEA.pdf

http://momoresto.com/restaurant/lond...-cafe-terrace/
RM67 is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 05:22 PM
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Google the Richoux tearooms and look at their menu.
carolyn is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 05:46 PM
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I used to frequent Richoux's mostly the one across from Harrods, however a few years ago the wait staff shifted from ladies in period dress and pleasant smiles to rather gruff ( albeit efficient) waiters. IMO the charm of the place is gone. Furnishings were looking very shabby . Perhaps they have renovated, but I haven't returned.
historytraveler is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 06:25 PM
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The Savoy is expensive, but it's an experience, set in a gorgeous historical building. Great people watching. Dress up if you go.
Tabernash2 is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 07:32 PM
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Great suggestions just keep coming. RM67, the Moroccan style afternoon tea, looks very interesting. Tabernash2, The Savoy does look expensive but your comment also brings up the question I haven't thought about, "What the heck will I wear?" Some of the high end hotel-based teas probably have a dress code. I'm your basic blue-jeans or black-jeans kind of girl (well 63 y.o. grandmother but I'm sticking with girl) I guess most of the websites will advise me.
lshluvslondon3 is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 07:52 PM
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We've had high teas at Brown's (perfect for atmosphere), Fortnum's, Harrods, the Tate, the Dorchester (nice piano music there), and the Ritz. All just fine.
Underhill is offline  
Sep 17th, 2013, 07:53 PM
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No!!! NOT high tea--afternoon tea. Confusing the two is one of my pet peeves. We did have a high tea in Scotland, though.
Underhill is offline  

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