The winners of this year’s Afternoon Tea Awards have been revealed, unveiling the best afternoon teas in Britain to suit all tastes.
To decide the winners in each category, the independent judges considered all aspects of the afternoon tea experience from booking to departure, with a strong focus on the food, drink and service.
Whether you like your afternoon tea classic and chic or quirky and cool, there’s a winner in their line-up for you.
Best Traditional Afternoon Tea – Coworth Park, Ascot
Yes, that’s the same Cowarth Park that Prince Harry stayed at before his wedding… The judges called this afternoon tea ‘faultless, with an ambience that was lovely and intimate’, and praised its ‘exquisite pastries’ and ‘airy, light and fluffy scones’ – as well as the stunning surroundings of the 5 star luxury hotel.
Best Contemporary Afternoon Tea – Rosewood, London
Winners for Best Contemporary Afternoon Tea for the second year running, the Rosewood London’s Art Afternoon Tea puts a quirky spin on this mid-afternoon British tradition. Served in a mirrored room, the judges described the Rosewood’s afternoon tea as ‘utterly perfect and very sophisticated’ with inspired pastries and an ‘ambiance that is relaxed, creating a calm grandeur.’
Best Tea Service – The Langham, London
Serving afternoon tea to the cream of London society since 1865, the dazzling Palm Court at The Langham, London, delights guests with a bespoke afternoon tea. ‘There is an impressive selection of high quality tea blends, paired with food,’ the judges noted. ‘The tea sommelier was superb; passionate and knowledgeable, offering personalised recommendations and explanation throughout the experience.’
Best Children’s Afternoon Tea – Fortnum & Mason, London
Aimed at children aged 4-10, the judges described the Children’s Afternoon Tea at Fortum & Mason as ‘just the right size for a child’ and ‘very pretty and appetizing, but not too serious.’ Hot chocolate, fruit juice or milk are offered as alternatives to tea and for those children with smaller appetites, and a beautifully presented take home box is provided for left overs.
Best Themed Afternoon Tea – The Ampersand Hotel ‘Science Tea’, London
Inspired by its South Kensington neighbour – The Science Museum – this interactive tea serves up a mix of exciting and curious dishes, from jams served in petri dishes to chocolate spacemen and dinosaur biscuits. The judges said that it was ‘a creative feast’ that ‘made having afternoon tea a really fun experience, executed really well, being both jovial and luxurious at the same time.’
Keith Newton, Managing Director of AfternoonTea.co.uk, host of the Afternoon Tea Awards, said: ‘This year our team of judges have visited venues in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and were impressed by the high standard of afternoon tea being served across the country.
‘These are the only Afternoon Tea Awards to judge the entire customer experience, from arrival to departure, with a strong emphasis on food, tea and service.’
‘Over the past year chefs have demonstrated flair and creativity with their afternoon tea menus. Combine this with high levels of service and afternoon tea continues to be the perfect experience for all occasions.’