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Dream Escape Guide to Afternoon Tea

23rd August 2018

 

There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.”

Henry James

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Having just celebrated Afternoon Tea Week, we delve into one of the most delightful of British traditions.

Explore the journey of tea; from the home of Earl Grey in Northumberland, to Woburn, where afternoon tea was popularized in the 1840’s when Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford would drink tea to stop that afternoon ‘sinking feeling’. Since then tea has become synonymous with the British, and the taking of afternoon tea has graduated from a respectable practice for fashionable society to a chance to experience a leisurely and elegant ritual, take a rest from a hectic shopping day or celebrate with friends or family.

Join Dream Escape’s expert guides and take one of London’s tea trails from Garaways Coffee House, where tea was first sold in the 1650’s, to the ‘tea clipper’ the Cutty Sark in Greenwich and the Chelsea Physic Garden with it’s links to the tea trade.

Of course, in modern times there are many ways to enjoy afternoon tea, from traditional to themed and elegant to entertaining.

Perfect for families young and old, the magnificent Mad Hatters tea is on the ‘must do’ list of London’s elite with Alice’s Exotic Fruits “Drink Me” potion and treats such as a Mad March Hare Vanilla Pocket Watch Macaroon and a strawberry flamingo with a white chocolate Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé croquet truffle.

Take a fun twist on this traditional pastime with an Afternoon tea bus tour, which will keep everyone entertained with an endless flow of London’s iconic sights. Head on down to the potion room in a classic Soho bakery for a fully immersive Harry Potter themed afternoon tea. Spend a fun few hours mixing edible potions, drinking teas with names like “Elixir of Life” and “Unicorn Tears,” and Hubble Bubble – your very own cauldron with a lemon inspired potion.

Sample traditional afternoon tea at iconic London venues such as The Ritz and The Goring or perhaps travel to the west of Ireland and experience the splendour of a magnificent 13th Century castle and former Guinness Family home and the Connaught Room, where the ritual of afternoon tea has been preserved since 1868.

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Tea tempers the spirits and harmonizes the mind, dispels lassitude and relieves fatigue, awakens thought and prevents drowsiness, lightens or refreshes the body, and clears the perceptive faculties.”

Lu Yu, Classic of Tea: Origins and Rituals

 

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