Monday, 19 May 2014

The Afternoon Tea Club Reviews: Edible Garden Afternoon Tea at the Intercontinental Westminster

The Intercontinental Westminster has been out in full bloom this month, joining with Laurent Perrier for the second year running, to celebrate the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Complete with free flowing Champagne and a cake conservatory, this tea is nothing short of blooming marvellous!

Caroline Says: 
Last year, we were wowed by the IC Westminster's beautiful floral displays, Eccles cakes and super tall cake stands, so were delighted to be welcomed back for second helpings at their Edible Garden Afternoon Tea.

Initially presented quite unassumingly on the IC Westminster's signature floor stands, the 'allotment' as I'll call it was an extremely pretty spectacle, with a nice selection of savouries which included - a fantastic pea and basil tart and my personal fave a goat's cheese and tomato with cheddar shortbread. The concept of this tea very much steers away from the traditional, with finger sandwiches only playing a minimal role in the proceedings, which although a notable absence, was more than made up for with the presence of a mini eggs Benedict, smoked salmon roulade and avocado & baby veg shot.

The addition of Chelsea buns alongside the lavender infused scones were also a much appreciated supplement, and a great change to the traditional fruit scone. I sometimes find double scones to be a little too much, so this fruity alternative made a nice change.

After we'd devoured the allotment stage, we moved on to the garden itself. Presented underneath a fantastic glass greenhouse, this second part of the tea really is its crowning glory. As you can see from the pictures below, every cake was a spectacle and very much a feast for the eyes. My favourite from the greenhouse was the sweet and dense lavender macaroon, closely followed by the champagne bomb, which although not quite as heady as the free flowing champagne, was certainly a treat to get you in a celebratory mood!

All in all a super afternoon tea and definitely not one to be missed.

Laura says: 
Tea at IC Westminster is a personal fave of mine. The decor is beautiful, the atmosphere is naturally inviting and the tea service is one of just complete luxury. 

The Edible Garden Afternoon Tea is one of the most artistic I have ever seen. Reinventing traditional favourites under the green theme certainly made for some inspiring creations and I couldn't wait to see what was on offer. 

To start, forget regular finger sandwiches (though I did miss them a little!) we were treated to an array of savouries unlike any other. Salmon on rye, mini eggs Benedict, smoked chicken and tarragon tear drop, guacamole and baby vegetable shot, roast beef on beetroot bread (gorgeously sweet by the way) and my favourite, a miniature pea and basil tart. Just beautiful and a great mix of flavours and textures to excite the taste buds.

Next, I had forgotten just how amazing the scones are at this hotel and my was I more than happy to be reminded. Presented in a warm napkin blanket and partnered with Chelsea buns, they're soft and nicely golden on the top with lavender accents. A big dollop of jam and cream or lemon curd and you've got perfection.

And for the edible garden. Presented in a mini greenhouse, which was pretty amazing in itself, we had a selection of sweet treats that came with a story. Starting from the top where the flavours are light, we were advised to take a bit of a journey to the bottom of the garden where the petite cakes were at their most flavoursome. We began with a lavender macaroon, passed the edible pebbles and made our way to the lemon ladybird garden cake. Then onto a gorgeous strawberry champagne bubble and chocolate mousse and ending with a raspberry and meringue pie. I loved the lavender macaroon, very light but that's why it worked so well after taking in such a mix of flavours. I also loved the chocolate mousse. I think the word I used was 'ridiculous' - it was just THAT good.

And all the bits in between are edible too, the tiny plant pots, pebbles, even the soil!

The flowery theme continued with a cup of blackcurrant and hibiscus tea which was just lovely and did I mention champagne? Free flowing, your glass will never be empty. 

Overall a beautiful afternoon tea in a beautiful place - do not miss this one!

The Edible Garden Afternoon Tea runs until 26th May at the Intercontinental Westminster. For more information please visit their official website.

DISCLAIMER: As is common in the catering and leisure industry, we were provided with complimentary services for review purposes. Whilst this has not influenced our review, we believe in the full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. 


1 comment

  1. Oh my gosh, it's so cute! I love that it comes in a little greenhouse, such a nice touch.


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