Went to Brown's for the English afternoon tea experience. It was also to celebrate a friend's birthday. Totally enjoyed the quiet elegance of the event.
Need to book ahead and they have a 90min turn around for each group. They take upto 5 people per table only. We had ourselves a large table and plenty of space. Comfy sofa and chairs. The antique silver tea service and tiered cake stand were exquisite. There is a wide range of tea to choose from. The sandwiches were light but nothing spectacular (ham & piccalilli, egg & watercress, cheese & onion relish, cucumber & cream cheese, smoked salmon). The scones and pastries were delicate and lovely. The clotted cream and strawberry jam were heavenly with the scones. All items were refilled quickly. One particular item was a favourite (the rhubarb crumble in a shot glass) we asked for 5 portions and they were presented with a flourish (included extra tiny teaspoons to eat it).
The waiting staff was discreet and available - quick with refills. Lastly there was a cake trolley - Dundee cake and Victoria sponge on the day. Alas we have had our fill by then.
The furniture and corridor decorations were very plush. There was quiet music (pianist in the next room) to add to the whole ambience of elegance and gentility. We even had a quiet rendition of 'happy birthday' when we got to the present-opening session of our afternoon. Lovely !! Although we stayed passed our time - we were not rushed.
At £35 per person - some might feel it too expensive for tea and sandwiches. However, if you take into account the ambience and the whole experience - then it was worthwhile. Remember: you can refill as many times as you like. It is not something I would do on a regular basis. But for a special occassion, definitely recommended. The price also ensures that 'riff-raffs' are excluded. The only small criticism is the ambient temperature - was overly warm.
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