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

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Time for a little International Christmas Afternoon Tea....

Hello there,

Welcome back to another afternoon tea blog from Tea With Me and Friends, this time we are joined by the lovely Sarika from Pearls Bounce as she shares with us some more of her international afternoon tea adventures.

We always love hearing about where Sarika has enjoyed afternoon tea, and seeing her scrummy photos....this time she has been sampling wonderful Christmas afternoon teas.....

Santa Claus comes to Tea in Beijing

My Festive challenge : Find 3 fantastic Christmas Inspired Afternoon Tea's in Asia. December festivities have taken me to the Great Wall of China, the city that never sleeps - Hong Kong and Singapore for a Singapore Slinging Christmas.  Starting the advent month with an exhilarating trip to Beijing with temperatures of -4C, a cosy and warm Festive Afternoon Tea @ China World Hotel Lobby Lounge felt Christmas fitting! Reviews by City Weekend rated China World Hotel as the leader for Afternoon Tea in Beijing. With limited time in Beijing I took on their ranking and paid a visit to the busy China World Trade Centre. The hotel was decked out in full Christmas cheer and had me excited with anticipation of what an afternoon tea service would be like in China.

The Christmas Afternoon Tea set is priced at RMB328 +15% service charge and includes two teas, coffees or hot chocolate. Tea selection is broken down into three categories with multiple options available in each selection: Classic Tea Selection (English Breakfast, Earl Grey, Darjeeling, Assam and Sencha), Chinese Tea Selection (Jasmine, Pu’er, Chrysanthemum) and Herbal Tea Selection (Peppermint and Chamomile). For an added indulgent there is also a Champagne Afternoon Tea option available which I took along with my option for a hot chocolate.

The table setting was quite vintage with white lacy dollies and striped armchairs. The hot chocolate was divine and rich, I had two cups! The Perrier Jouet Brut was accompanied with the most moorish sweet popcorn, I just couldn't stop!

The Tea Stand was presented in true festive glitter…it just brought the biggest 'big kid' smile to my face...I knew this was going to be a tasty tea!

An impressive Christmas afternoon tea stand

Santa just stole the show. He looked so cute and endearing, a part of me felt bad about eating him, however it had to be done once I knew it was a white chocolate Santa! 

Oh no Sarika - what are you doing to Santa??

Oh my!

The battenberg cake was a famous inhouse bake and considering I'm not really a fan of marzipan I found it to be one of the lightest and tastiest battenburgs I have ever eaten. Perhaps Battenberg converted. 

Afternoon tea sweets

Chinese snacks were next in line for demolishment. The BBQ Pork Pao was decent not like the delicious ones you get in Hong Kong or Singapore but still fun to have at tea time.

The scones were good and the variation of a chocolate scone was interesting but the real highlight was the  Clotted cream, one of the best Tea condiments I have tried in Asia. The egg custard tartlet was also a great alternative option but lacked a little on taste.

The finger sandwiches were a good palate cleanser to make way for more sweet pastries, of which the Cinnamon Stars were a favourite.

Afternoon tea savouries

Christmas afternoon tea

The China World Hotel is one of the few afternoon tea events in Beijing that requires a reservation to ensure a seat at their fantastic Tea. 

Top Tip: I would highly recommend doing a bit research before heading to Beijing, the Internet and language can be a bit of an obstacle if you are not mandarin speakers. City Weekend was a helpful guide for dining and restaurant reviews.

A huge thank you to Sarika for sharing her latest afternoon tea adventure with us - that edible Santa really is cute, I'm not sure whether I could have eaten him! If you'd like to read more about Sarika's adventures pop by her blog.

If you have enjoyed an afternoon tea somewhere around the world, we'd love to hear from you. Please get in touch with your afternoon tea adventures!

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel & Lorna

Friday, 19 December 2014

A Selection of Christmas Afternoon Teas.....

....to make you drool!

Hello there, welcome back to another Christmas afternoon tea post from Tea With Me and Friends. As you know we have been trawling the internet looking at all the lovely places you can enjoy a festive themed afternoon tea this year....we've already shared lots of scrummy photos with you...but today we thought we'd share some more (you can never have too much tea!).

So, we start with this scrummy creation from Park Room at Grosvenor House, A JW Marriott Hotel....

Afternoon tea Park Room
The savouries here include Home Smoked Turkey with Cranberry Sauce and Honey Roast Ham with English Mustard sandwiches. While amongst the sweets you will find Orange & Polenta Cake
and Chocolate & Chestnut Roulade.

Or if you fancy something a little more contemporary, maybe the Lancaster Hotel would be a good option....

A contemporary festive afternoon tea at the Lancaster Hotel
This festive Afternoon Tea features Christmas pudding scones, and a roast turkey and cranberry tartlet, along with more traditional items such as cucumber sandwiches and  raspberry macaroons.

You can enjoy mini Christmas puds at the Royal HorseGuards Hotel....

Mini Christmas puds and Christmas trees at Royal Horse Guards

This festive treat includes Mini Homemade Mince Pies, Candy Cane Vanilla Shortbread and Chilli Pineapple and Mount Gay Rum Truffle, along with a glass of spiced champagne. My mouth is watering as I am typing this!

Somewhere rather different that we have not thought of before for a spot of afternoon tea is the Hilton London Gatwick Hotel, the hotel is situated 30 minutes from central London with access to both the M23 and M25 motorways...... take a peek at their scrummy creation....

Afternoon tea at the Hilton London Gatwick Hotel
This festive Afternoon Tea comes complete with roast turkey sandwiches, marzipan Christmas pudding and mulled wine.

Featuring edible decorations is the "baubles of fun at Christmas time" afternoon tea at DoubleTree by Hilton Tower of London......

Festive afternoon tea at DoubleTree by Hilton Tower of London

This tea features White Chocolate & Coconut baubles and Chocolate and orange Baubles! You can also enjoy Apple and cinnamon scones with Sweet Apple chutney and Calvados cream.

Finally I have found this wonderful looking afternoon tea currently being served at The Langham.....

Wedgwood Festive Afternoon Tea - The Langham

Because this looks so amazing (and we love china) we thought you'd appreciate a closer peek at that top tier of sweet treats.....

Beautiful sweet treats - afternoon tea at the Langham
This festive afternoon tea includes pastries inspired by the Wedgwood Collections, including Wedgwood Tea Cups - White chocolate mousse, tropical jelly and dark chocolate sable and "White Cameo on Blue" - Strawberry and white balsamic Victoria sponge.

This has to be one of the prettiest afternoon teas I have seen recently.

We hope you've enjoyed taking a peek at these festive afternoon teas, if you enjoy one of these or another festive afternoon tea, we'd love to hear all about it!

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel & Lorna

All photos are taken from the hotel's websites

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Time for a Cup of Christmas Tea....

Hello there,

Welcome back to another post from Tea With Me and Friends - I'm sorry that we've been a little slow to post articles this month, time is escaping us at the moment....we're really pleased that the Christmas break is just around the corner!

Today I wanted to share with you a festive cup of tea that was given to me by the lovely Claire from The Secret Tea Society. If you haven't heard about the Society before, we are a bunch of tea loving ladies who meet up to enjoy a spot of afternoon tea and a good natter. Take a peek at one of our recent afternoon tea trips here.

The tea that Claire gave me was a little Christmas gift....

Kent & Sussex Christmas Tea

Now as regularly readers will know, we love trying new teas here at Tea With Me and Friends and we're also a rather festive bunch....so we could wait to try this tea! I took a peek at the Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company to find out a little more about this festive blend. The words "exotic Fruit Tisane" feature, as do "wonderful aroma with a powerful spicy taste". It certainly smelt wonderful when we first opened the bag.....like Christmas had been trapped in that bag!

The tisane reminded me of a pretty pot pourri...

the instructions suggests leaving this blend to brew for 10-12 minutes, but to be honest we poured a little sooner than that....

The result was a beautiful red tea, which smelt like Christmas and tasted quite wonderful. The flavour is spicy, I could tastes cloves mainly, but it wasn't overpowering or artificial. In fact it made a rather lovely cup of Christmas tea.

I did try it cold as well as hot (but accident) and can confirm that it better enjoyed hot!

If you would like to try this tea for yourself pop by the Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company website for more details.

As it's the festive season, Claire and some of the Secret Tea Society ladies have a little festive treat for you.... we hope it puts you in the festive mood!

If you'd like to find out more about the Secret Tea Society pop by their website.

Thank you for popping by today,
Rachel & Lorna