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Afternoon tea at The Wolseley, and where else?


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I had this recently! It was great! The tea kept coming - fresh and hot - and the cakes in particular were perfect.

I'd like to go somewhere else now for comparison. Does anyone have any ideas?

Damask at the Athenaeum (sp? god, who knows!). La Duree afternoon tea with champagne £30 I think? it's got a very, very kitsch 60/70's interior, but it actually works. It's unusual but if you fancied a change...

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Bob Bob Ricard or BBR, as its being called (see my post below). Just opened and offers a great tea, complete with a little toaster on your table for your crumpets and a choice of jams, jellies and a lemon curd.

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My wife is the afternoon tea connoisseur and having visited various places around London (and beyond) she says her favourite so far is the Landmark. Sandwiches are hard to compare across the board but these were excellent, fluffy and light and extremely more-ish. However, the cakes really stood out and unlike most places the plates were refreshed (most just offer more sandwiches).

At the moment she rates it above the Wolseley and the Lanesborough (both excellent) but she wants to compare it to Claridges and the Ritz. I foresee an expensive month for me!

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  • 10 months later...

Weirdly this is the only vaguely Wolesley-related thread I can find on here. Strange that it doesn't attract more comment or merit it's own thread as so many people i know regularly eat there (I bumped into Shaun Hill no less on one occassion).

Anyway I ended up here as Le Gavroche, where i had hoped to sneak a late lunch, had a private do on. Although a different proposition I decided The Wolesley would fill the gap with good food, a little indulgence and some supreme people-watching.

I kept it simple. A Tanq 10 G&T in the bar whilst i waited for a table (along with a couple of those free cheese puffs), and then after hoovering up some bread and butter I went for a lunch of dressed crab and a glass of Mosel Riesling, followed by a treacle tart and finally coffee.

The chewy batons were as moreish as ever for a kick-off, and the dressed crab itself was absolutely spanking, a really top drawer execution of a superb crustacea. The accompanying toast was a little uninspiring and mean though. The treacle tart was served with a scoop of cream and was just right - unctuous and thick but not cloying or heavy. Weirdly it tasted slightly banana-ish, but that didn't detract.

Coffee was good too - an esperesso that stayed scalding right to the last sip - but for me the high point was the people-watching. A load of the European art crowd were in, and there were some stupendously mis-matched couples (mainly in terms of age) which begged all sorts of questions regarding the nature of their relationships. Sadly the traditional Wolesley clatter stymied by eavesdropping opportunities. I read Private Eye instead.

The Wolseley is pricy, and the noise puts some off, but the service is slick, the food is generally good (if seldom amazing) and the whole place just has a palpable buzz and energy which makes it a compelling dining experience for me. I like it a lot.

Cheers

Thom

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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I have been to the Wolseley more times than I care to remember, however always for breakfast or drinking in the bar. Sounds like I am missing a treat trying it at other times.

I don't find it that pricey for breakfast at least, considering service, quality and experience

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Having breakfast again there next week,

Had some superb ones, well plated and tasted cooked to order, but the last one looked, and tasted like there was basically a load of bain maries in the kitchen full of the various bits and pieces and a kp or waiter just grabbed the items and plonked them on the plate to 'order' provincial hotel stylee.

The food was luke warm but not inedible, they forgot black pudding and when it came it too was barely warm, just poor value and a shadow of its former self.

However upon being faced with a bill for mid-£40 something for 2 breakfasts, orange juice and teas my inner yorkshire man emerged and i did have a whine, and got the breakfasts comped.

So we're going back, got to fill the time before lunch at koffman somehow......

you don't win friends with salad

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it's a once a year-ish boys day out with a couple of chef mates, day to day is a little less excessive!

On the basis 'lunch'usually ends around 4-ish it's usually just beer time until train at 8pm.

That said, i do like a challenge, and some friends have a dinner reservation that night too, maybe do it again :laugh:

you don't win friends with salad

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it's a once a year-ish boys day out with a couple of chef mates

Yes, but cunningly you maintain at least fifty two sets of friends, colleagues and general reprobates with which to have these "once a year" benders ensuring such blow-outs roll around for you with alarming frequency...

Speaking of which aren't we due one of our "annual" afternoon tea soirees with cakes and finger sandwiches and daintly extended pinkies?

Cheers

Thom

Edited by thom (log)

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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it's a once a year-ish boys day out with a couple of chef mates

Yes, but cunningly you maintain at least fifty two sets of friends, colleagues and general reprobates with which to have these "once a year" benders ensuring such blow-outs roll around for you with alarming frequency...

Speaking of which aren't we due one of our "annual" afternoon tea soirees with cakes and finger sandwiches and daintly extended pinkies?

well, there is an element of truth in that....

yes, let's have a think about that one

you don't win friends with salad

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