The Michelin-Starred Restaurant Presents a Victorian Afternoon Tea – inspired by the decade in which Christmas first began in the UK.
The five-star St. James’s Hotel and Club in Mayfair is offering a historical-themed 1840 Afternoon Tea, designed by Executive Chef William Drabble of in-house Michelin Star Restaurant Seven Park Place. Guests will be transported to Victorian times and taste classic cakes of that period, keeping its originality but with slight modern-day twist.
Afternoon Tea originated in 1840 when Anna Russell, the Duchess of Bedford and great friend of Queen Victoria, complained of a ‘sinking feeling’ and started inviting friends to join her at Woburn Abbey for cakes and tea in the mid-afternoon. St. James’s Hotel and Club is keen to capture these traditions and Drabble has created a selection of sweet treats and sandwiches based on authentic recipes and favourites of Queen Victoria. He was also inspired by the festivities which surround the holiday season, as 1840’s was the decade which saw Christmas first being commercialised in the UK. This afternoon tea, set in the hotel’s cosy and intimate restaurant, is perfect in the run up to Christmas as guests can take in the festive décor, featuring stunning Hayford and Rhodes flower arrangements, and indulge with loved ones.
Before the 1840’s, Christmas was not celebrated in the UK. There were no holidays off of work nor were Christmas cards sent. The industrial revolution of the Victorian era was what ignited the tradition of Christmas in Britain. Charles Dickens’ famous book “Christmas Carol”, published in 1843, sparked the tradition of giving presents as it persuaded rich Victorians to redistribute their wealth by giving to the poor and thus, Christmas was born.
The tea features highlights from Victorian times including a Tipsy Cake, soaked in sherry and served with custard, profiteroles, lemon drizzle cake, custard tart and a classic Victoria Sponge Cake. Other dishes include Cheshire cheese scones, made with the oldest recorded British cheese, plain scones with jam and clotted cream as well as an array of traditional savoury sandwiches. All served on Victorian inspired crockery and washed down with a cup of an exclusive fine loose tea blend from The East India Company* – created especially for the hotel – or for those in the mood for something fizzy, St. James’s Hotel and Club’s finest Champagne.
The 1840 Afternoon Tea costs £40 per person.
For further information or to book visit the website or call – 02073161600