I could get used to this Afternoon Tea thing...especially when having it at superb value!
Bea's of Blomsbury has been a hotspot for anyone who adores tea and all things baking since it opened in 2008, and it has sadly taken me this long to treat myself to a visit. Put the violins away I hear you say, so let's not dwell on my tardiness to the party, the main thing for me to stress is that if you haven't yet been along for a cuppa and lunch/a pastry/sweet treat, you are missing out! If you have been, then I'm sure you too have been won over by Bea's.
It has a small and elegant interior with various dainty decorations and kitchenware and characterful crockery. It epitomises a tea party with a modern and charming panache.
Although you can come here for a variety of drinks and foods I went for the full Afternoon Tea for £15 per head (an option of tea and scones is available for £6 per head). They say their afternoon tea is their 'take on a British institution' and here's why. Firstly, we were each served three mini sandwiches with different fillings. There is an alternative if you are vegetarian.
The ingredients are fresh, and evenly balanced to enhance the flavours. My favourite was definitely the ham and brie sandwich which had a hit of wholegrain mustard underneath the ham.
There was no rush and once we had finished the savouries, it was time to bring out the big buns.
As the waitress placed the cake stand before us my heart and stomach leapt. Such a beautiful selection of crafted delights. On the bottom tier were scones with the strawberry jam and clotted cream as well as some passionfruit marshmallow. And the top tier was embellished with pistachio and chocolate macarons, meringue balls, brownies, blondies and blueberry and banoffee cupcakes. Heaven.
Most of my attention was spent on the moist banoffee cupcake which had a light cream frosting - rather than a butter or cream cheese - which offered the most sweetness; and the macarons with their crumbly pistachio shell and dark chocolate ganache. The scones were perfectly cooked and always a staple part of afternoon tea but the afore mentioned were particular highlights! I'd like to also point out that the meringues were spot on too, with a decent chewiness in the middle.
The rabbits on the cake stand were also a nice touch. You can just make out their little heads on the top tier looking like they're having an innocent smooch.
There was so much cake to be had that we couldn't finish it all. (I'm sorry). But the great thing is that you can take the leftovers home all boxed up and in tact. (No longer sorry).