The day that this afternoon tea happened, had the potential to be a bad one!
The very quick back story started Monday of that week, with me discovering, by some amazing fluke, (I have no clue why I decided to look at my passport) that my passport had only 3 months left to run until expiry. I was off to New York the following week, celebrating my friends 40th birthday, and as America are so strict on having 6 months left on your passport when you travel, potentially, I wasn’t going to be able to go! A cry of help to the passport office, meant that I had to take a day off work, and travel into London Victoria, to go and pay with my blood, (trust me, you pay for being disorganised) to get a same day passport renewal. You make an appointment, do your paperwork, then trudge back there 4 hours later to collect.
So, as I hate wasting any holiday from work, my mum and I decided that we would utilise the time, (we were having to be in London anyway) and book afternoon tea!
My lovely sons had gifted to me for Mothers Day, a voucher to go to The Mad Hatters Tea Party at The Sanderson Hotel in Oxford Street. I then purchased it for my Mum for a Mothers Day treat, as it looked so amazing. Based on the childhood book Alice in Wonderland, one of my faves as a child, the Mad Hatters tea party is a collaboration between The Sanderson, and Shoreditch based designers, Luna and Curious. The Sanderson is situated just off Oxford Street, so easy to locate and travel to.
When seated at your table, your hostess hands you an old, vintage looking book, and opens it to reveal the menu! For some reason the photo keeps turning sideways! The mad hatter is messing with me!
She explains that you will be receiving everything on the menu, (yum) and will start with your choice of tea, coffee or fruit infusions. Yes, a fruit infusion. Not your common ole fruit tea bag. This was presented by a little silver tray with 4 dinky bottles on. In the bottles were your choices of infusion, Strawberry and Cream, Mint Choc chip, Apple Pie and Rhubarb and Custard. The table is set with quirky plates, and cups and saucers with themes from Alice in Wonderland, and a gorgeous, old fashioned, musical jewellery box. When it is opened, the ballerina twirls to the tune of Somewhere over the Rainbow, and the box contains sugar cubes for your tea! I loved this touch, so cute.
A few moments after our tea was served, (I chose the Strawberries and Cream, mum had breakfast tea, both delicious) the beautiful, artistic centrepiece that was our food treats was brought to the table. Oh. My. Goodness. It was just so fabulous. Carrying on with the Alice theme, the 3 tiered stand had a display of goodies that I didnt want to touch, they looked just too pretty! (dont worry, I did get over that feeling pretty fast) We had diamond shaped sandwhiches, savoury and sweet scones, tiny savoury tartlets, chocolate tea cups filled with mouse, mango cheesecake, mushroom marshmallows, clock shaped victoria sponge, and meringue carrots on a bed of carrot shoots! It was so amazing.
There was also, to my absolute deight, (Im easily pleased) little bottles, with a ‘drink me’ label on, with a puree type drink in it, and a straw. I was obviously hoping that by drinking it, in true Alice style, I would shrink a little. Sadly not. I am the same size.
Our afternoon tea truly was, a magical experience. I would recommend it to anyone. Two hours of laughter, eating beautiful treats, discovering all the little touches, and an afternoon with my Mum, always a pleasure! Oh and I got my passport so was able to go to New York!