There’s nothing more quintessentially English than holding an afternoon tea party. Especially if you are in a hotel named after Winston Churchill. I was invited to The Montagu restaurant to try the Cabbages & Roses afternoon tea which has just been launched for the summer, at The Hyatt Regency The Churchill hotel.
If you’ve followed Oh So London in the past, you may well know that I have visited the Montagu restaurant at The Hyatt Regency The Churchill a few times. In fact, it’s one of my favourite places for tea and cocktails. It’s traditional but stylish, slick but not stuffy. And it made perfect sense for them to partner with a vintage British brand like Cabbages and Roses.
I ordered a glass of champagne and the waiter made my friend a mocktail which was fantastically piquant and bursting with fruity flavour. It reminded me of a refresher bar as it made your cheeks ache from the sweetness. A bit much, you might say, when you’re about to dive into a series of cakes and sweet treats. But it was absolutely delicious nonetheless.
I often feel like you’re having a tea party for grown-ups when you go for afternoon tea. And you don’t get more grown up than foam cucumber palate cleansers that disappear on the tongue and champagne jelly (yes champagne jelly!) I was like an excited child when I realised what it was. It was strong and delicious and served with a beautiful flower set inside.
We worked our way through the afternoon tea from the bottom tier upwards and I’d say it got better with each tier.
I wasn’t fond of the chicken liver pate and melba toast, although it was a nice idea. And I would have loved to have had more sandwiches – the Cabbages & Roses afternoon tea contains a Coronation chicken style wrap but no cucumber or egg sandwiches which I adore. However, this and the Blooming prawn cocktail were very tasty. And the smoked salmon macaroon was a fantastic surprise. Imagine sweet meringue with a creamy, savoury salmon filling. Totally lush. One just wasn’t enough!
The top tier of biscuits and sweets had a particularly beautiful Cabbages & Roses influence and the theme here is also tied in with the famous rose garden at Chartwell – the home of Winston Churchill and his wife Clementine.
The rose garden was apparently Clementine’s pride and joy. So the Montagu restaurant has named Clementine’s Rose and White Chocolate Macaron after her. It was a concentration of sweetness and it melted in the mouth deliciously.
The Chocolate and Lavender tart was rich and gooey too. Then we had the Natural Hartley Raspberry Biscuit which was decorated beautifully and absolutely packed with fruitiness.
The Earl Grey cupcake was simple yet beautiful and had a pillow soft sponge.
Afternoon tea wouldn’t be afternoon tea without scones, jam and clotted cream. When our waiter brought them, they were oven fresh and just as good as they were the last time I visited.
Every time I visit the Montagu I realise just how relaxed it is, which you may not expect from its super polished set up. In fact, it was so relaxed, we were here for several hours, and the staff did exceptionally well to cater to my friend’s dairy-free dietary needs.
I feel quite at home here and I love watching their evolving menus. I’ve had a Gatsby themed dinner, a New York Italian brunch and various afternoon teas in this hotel that heralds Winston Churchill and his wife.
As always, we had a wonderful afternoon. I wonder what surprises this restaurant will offer next.
Until next time x
The Cabbages & Roses afternoon tea is being served at The Montagu until the end of September from Monday to Friday from 1-5.30pm and on Saturdays and Sundays from 3.30pm until 5.30pm. For more information, visit TheMontagurestaurant.com.