We have the rather peckish Duchess of Bedford, Anna Russell to thank for the creation of afternoon tea as we know it today. Although tea has been drunk for centuries, the ritual of afternoon tea is a fairly modern invention in comparison.
As fuel became a relatively affordable commodity in the eightieth century, the upper classes started to light up their houses for longer and as a result dinner times became fashionably later. Anna often needed a nibble in the afternoon to see her through, and soon asked her friends to join her for a gossip over sandwiches and a refreshing cuppa or two.
The trend caught on quickly and the rest they say is history. This month we’ve been perusing, halls, hotels, restaurants and cafes for the finest afternoon teas around. Here’s are top picks from the North East and Cumbria:
SIX at BALTIC:
Available 12-4pm on Sundays*
Take a look > https://www.sixbaltic.com
This rooftop restaurant boasts panoramic views across Newcastle’s Quayside. Spend the perfect Sunday afternoon enjoying an elegant afternoon tea with style and then, peruse the BALTIC galleries for a truly cultural experience.
CAFÉ 21 FENWICK:
Take a look > http://www.cafe21fenwick.co.uk/eat-with-us/cafe/
Cafe 21 at Fenwick is described as stylish, sassy and sociable and we would agree! It’s a port of call if you’re in the centre of Newcastle and the afternoon tea never disappoints.
Take a look > https://www.matfenhall.com/
Locally sourced ingredients are at the heart of Matfen Halls afternoon tea menu and when it comes to the star ingredient, the tea, the utmost care and consideration has been taken – Ringtons loose leaf teas are carefully coupled with each serving for a truly foodie experience.
Take a look > https://www.acklamhall.co.uk
The history and features of grade I listed Acklam Hall make this is a spectacular venue to enjoy a traditional afternoon tea, served on fine bone china, with the finest selections of teas and treats.
Take a look > https://www.armathwaite-hall.com
Set within utterly breathtaking surroundings, Armathwaite Hall offers the opportunity to enjoy a sophisticated afternoon tea whilst soaking up the tranquil surrounds of the beautiful lake district.