It finally happened… I found something to rival Afternoon Tea!
“What?” I hear you say.
“There’s nothing in the world better than a lazy afternoon tea with perfectly sliced crustless sandwiches, fresh scones and the daintiest sweet treats?”
Well yes I thought so too. But then the lovely folks at Amara (the home interiors website that fulfills all my luxury lifestyle dreams) threw a bash at The Sanderson Hotel and I discovered the Mad Hatters Tipsy Evening Tea Party!*
Now technically, every afternoon tea I’ve ever been to has been rather a tipsy affair, (*cough cough* no tea thanks just keep topping up the champagne *cough cough*) but this one is so up my street that I’m sitting here grinning like the Cheshire Cat as I think back on it.
I’m kicking myself for not taking pictures of the Sanderson’s open air Courtyard Garden, the stunning setting for our Tipsy Tea. It’s a lush leafy oasis of flowering plants, cascading water fountains and a reflection pool – the most perfect summer setting for a get together. (Note that it also has heaters for when British summer has it’s ‘snow in July’ moments.)
Alas though, upon arrival I was handed a glass of deliciously crisp and refreshing Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque champagne and was soon having a good old chit chat with the other bloggers gathered and the team from Amara so I didn’t get a chance to whip out my camera.
The Tipsy Evening Tea was another matter however! Where food is concerned, if it’s beautiful the camera comes straight out and every inch of this feast deserved to be captured.
Dangerously for my somewhat empty stomach, we started with a flight of cocktails to get us in the mood. There were two tea based cocktails but I zeroed in on the mini martinis which were far more my, erm, cup of tea? One was a mini espresso made with cherry liqueur and orange marmalade and the other was dark chocolate and raspberry liqueur. Neither tasted particularly alcoholic so the Tipsy Tea soon lived up to it’s name!
As the champagne flowed the teastands were set before us with a flourish and I was soon clapping my hands together in sheer delight as the fun of it all. I mean, could there be a more perfect theme for a tea party than The Alice in Wonderland?
I started off with Alice’s Naughty Orange and Cointreau Drink Me potion, a scrumptious concoction served in a mini milk bottle with a straw.
Next, the scones. Soft, freshly baked, still warm from the oven cheese scones with a herby butter that I couldn’t get enough of. Heaven.
The sandwiches were equally delicious, including a caramelised cornish crab bridge roll and a smoked salmon Scotch quails egg with caviar and cream cheese.
By far my favourite was the Stack of King of Hearts ham and parmesan croque-monsieurs however. So much so that far later into the evening we were offered some extra helpings and I couldn’t resist polishing off another!
And then, of course, we come to the Sweets which were perfectly on theme. The dark chocolate and rum chessboard gateau almost finished me off. It was so light and yet so rich somehow at the same time, but then I had to try the pocket watch macaroons which were so light and perfectly balanced that somehow I managed to find room for two!
The showpiece of the Mad Hatters Tipsy Evening Tea is of course the Wonderland marshmallow magic mushrooms, hidden inside a grass topper so you have to dig in to find them.
If you’re looking for a fun quirky food experience in London I really can’t recommend the Mad Hatters Tipsy Evening Tea Party enough. It’s quirky, it’s a feast for the eyes, it’s delicious and it comes with a cracking cocktail menu. All things guaranteed to make Laura a happy bunny! (Or should that be White Rabbit?)
Where to find it: The Courtyard Garden at Sanderson London
Address: 50 Berners Street, London, W1T 3NG
Nearest Tubes: Goodge Street, Oxford Circus or Tottenham Court Road
Price: from £58 (£79 including a glass of premium champagne)
*Disclaimer: I was invited to this complimentary tea by the team from Amara.com (who might I say were an absolutely lovely bunch that I’m looking forward to catching up with again soon!) All views expressed however, are my own.