Welcome to our blog....here we will share all our afternoon tea adventures with you...the good, the bad and the wonderful!

Sunday, 25 September 2016

The Sunday Scone Review - M&S Devon Scones

Hello there,

Happy Sunday! Welcome back to Tea With Me and Friends and our regular scone review blog post!

This week we've been sampling scones from the M&S range.....

Devon scones from M&S

These scones are enriched with buttermilk and clotted cream- the packaging even states "just add jam".....but me being me....well I didn't see that instruction and bought myself some M&S clotted cream too!

Let's talk about the cream first, which is Cornish Clotted Cream. It's quite unusual to find own brand clotted cream in supermarkets, so I was intrigued to try this one out. To be honest I was a little disappointed as this cream had the consistency of butter and was really hard to spread. 

The scones were also slightly disappointing in appearance, as they looked rather flat.

At this stage I still hadn't seen the "just add jam" notice and ploughed ahead with a layer of clotted cream and a dollop of strawberry jam on top....

Devon scones from M&S

The scones held the cream and jam well, but the flavour was also disappointing - they really tasted mass produced. Even worse than this.....the scones were claggy in texture.

It was at this point that I saw the "just add jam" bit on the side of the packaging....so I decided to try the scones this way....layering jam onto the scone minus the cream (which felt very odd indeed!).

Devon scones from M&S

This time the scone was a bit easier to eat, being slightly less claggy in texture. But I was still not particularly impressed with these scones.

I can't remember exactly how much I paid for these, I think it was about £1.50 for four scones (there is a red sticker on the packet offering me two bakery products for £2.50). This makes them the same price as the other "posh" scones we have tried so far - but they are definitely not my favourite. In fact I think I'll give these scones 1 star out of 5 (because they held the toppings well).

I also noted these scones didn't last so well at home.

Pop back next week to see which other scones we've tried at home!

Thank you for popping by today,

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Time for.....a little cake!

Hello there,

Welcome back to Tea With Me and Friends!

Sometimes you just need a little bit of cake....isn't that right? Well last weekend Lorna and I had that exact feeling. We were in London for the day and didn't need the full afternoon tea experience, but fancied something a little sweet. When we spotted a Paul Bakery we decided to pop in for a sweet treat!

If you've not heard of Paul before, you are in for a treat. They are a family business, which started in France five generations ago. They are now 127 years old and have bakeries in 33 countries around the world. They are passionate about bread - baking high quality, hand-crafted breads everyday. Luckily for us they are also rather good at patisserie, cakes and flans! A Paul Bakery counter will always leaving you spoilt for choice and drooling a little!

On this occasion we opted for a Praline Eclair - Eclair Paris Brest and a Delice Framboise Slice (or a raspberry slice to you and me!)....

Patisserie from Paul Bakery

The eclair is made of light choux pastry with toasted flaked almonds, filled with praline cream and topped with caramelised hazelnuts.

While the raspberry slice has two layers of Genoese sponge and raspberry mousse and a layer of raspberry jelly, finished with a raspberry glaze and fresh raspberries.

And as you can see....they are big enough to cut in two and share....

Big enough to share - Patisserie from Paul Bakery

At £3.55 each these are a treat, but they were fresh, the flavours were great and they were a good size. The eclair was sweet and crunchy, but the pastry was so light, while the slice was the perfect mix of sweet and tart and again was incredibly light. 

What's your favourite Paul cake or pastry? We'd love to hear from you!

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel and Lorna

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Afternoon Tea News - Mum to Be Afternoon Tea at The Arch

Hello there,

Welcome back to Tea With Me and Friends, we hope you're having a tea-riffic day!

Today we are sharing with you some afternoon tea news from The Arch in London, who are currently running a very special afternoon tea for Mums to be and there baby shower guests!

Mum to Be afternoon tea - The Arch, London

The Arch London has devised a baby shower afternoon tea served on a delightful multi pastel coloured Wedgwood fine bone china tea set.  The perfect treat for a mummy to be to celebrate the impending arrival!

The baby shower afternoon tea features classic savoury delights including Honey baked ham and piccalilli, Stilton cheese straws and Coronation chicken.  For those with a sweet tooth, the afternoon tea will include Vanilla cupcakes, handmade marshmallows, Jammy dodgers and Chocolate orange tea cakes.

Afternoon tea cupcakes at The Arch, London

Afternoon tea is priced at £25 per person or £38 with a glass of Tattinger Brut Reserve, and can be enjoyed in the hotel’s stunning Martini Library, stylish Hunter 486 restaurant or chic Salon de Champagne lounge. 

Isn't that a cute afternoon tea?

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel & Lorna

Monday, 19 September 2016

It's London Fashion Week - lets celebrate with a cocktail!

Hello there,

Welcome back to Tea With Me and Friends! Today we have a cocktail post....well sometimes a girl just needs a good cocktail!

The ultimate fashion parade comes to London this September.  With events, shows and the perfect backdrop for people-watching, London Fashion Week showcases the very best of established and emerging design talent.

To celebrate the occasion, Corinthia Hotel London welcomes guests to sashay down the catwalk to the Bassoon and enjoy a special cocktail or two!

The barmen at Bassoon have created a special selection of limited-edition cocktails to enjoy during London Fashion Week, featuring a choice of rum, vodka, gin and whisky-based tipples, each aptly named for discerning fashionistas to savour.


Carmen Miranda
Bacardi Gold Rum, Angostura Bitters, Pineapple Juice, Lime Juice, Pimento, Grenadine and a drop of Lavender

Power Dressing
Grey Goose Vodka, St Germain Liqueur, Lemon Juice, Sugar Syrup and Pomegranate Seeds

In the Frow
Sloe Gin, St Germain Liqueur and Lemon Juice topped with Champagne

Smoking Jacket
Woodford Reserve Whiskey, Galliano and Old Fashioned Syrup

Glad Rags
Tanqueray Gin, St Germain Liqueur, Elderflower Cordial, Lime Juice and Jasmine Tea

The cocktails cost £16 each​ and look pretty special!

If you try one of these fab cocktails be sure to send us a photo!

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel & Lorna

Sunday, 18 September 2016

The Sunday Scone Review - Taste the Difference Farmhouse Cheese Scones

Hello there,

Welcome back to Tea With Me and Friends - we hope you're having a lovely day!

Today we have something a little different for you.....as there is no cream or jam in sight today! No....today we're going down the savoury route with some cheese scones from the Taste the Difference range in Sainsbury's! Now, we don't usually go for savoury scones, but in the interest of research we thought it would be good to give some a try!

Taste the Difference Farmhouse Cheddar Cheese Scones

Instead of reaching for the usual cream and jam, I opted for some red onion chutney and cheddar cheese to top from scone. I also thought a couple of homegrown tomatoes would go well with this lunchtime treat!

When I took the scones from the packet I was impressed by the smell of cheese that followed them out - they had a great aroma which made my mouth water! They felt a tiny bit greasy to touch on the top and I was worried this would have an impact on the texture. However, when I cut one in half I was pleased to find they were light and not at all greasy.

I dressed my scone by first topping it with some of the chutney and then adding slices of the cheese on top.......the scone held the topping well....

Taste the Difference Farmhouse Cheddar Cheese Scones

To be honest, although the scones smelt amazing, the cheese flavour was slightly overwhelmed by my toppings. The texture was good though, not overly greasy and they were light.

Overall, this made a pleasant change to the usual sweet scones we enjoy. Although I would have liked them to taste slightly more of the cheese. 

These scones cost £1.50 for four good sized scones. One thing I would note is that they didn't last very well at home - you definitely need to eat them within a day or two of opening the packet.

I would give these scones 3 out of 5 stars.

Do you enjoy savoury scones? Do you have a a favourite brand and what is your favourite topping? We'd love to hear from you!

Thank you for popping by today,