I always imagine a ‘proper’ afternoon tea to be a relaxed affair with dainty tasty tit-bits served in an elegant manner. This is what I was hoping for when I went to Jesmond Dene House Hotel near Newcastle to sample their afternoon delights – and I wasn’t disappointed.
With a friendly greeting we were shown into a spacious bright room with traditional décor. The chairs we were initially seated in were uncomfortably tiny we were moved to a more relaxing corner table without a problem.
There was a choice of three set menus, we chose the traditional Afternoon Tea at £17.50 per person (other options are the Champagne at £28.50 or the Confectioners menu at £13). There was a bit of a wait after ordering but we were happy to just sit back and settle into the restful ambience. The spacious room meant that although it was busy with quite few other afternoon tea takers there was plenty of room and we were spread out.
When it arrived it was beautifully presented on a three tier stand, an array of small but perfectly formed treats. As non-meat eaters we had delicate fingers (sans crusts of course) of four types of sandwich each – egg, cheese, salmon and humus. There were three types of lovely light scones – cheese, fruit and plain served with butter, jam and cream. The final tier was a sumptuous selection of bite sized delicacies – pink macaroons, mouth watering cheesecake, dark chocolate torte and cream filled profiteroles. With two pots of Earl Grey, sandwiches and scones already demolished we struggled to get through the sweet selection but the attentive staff offered to box up the ones we couldn’t quite manage to take home with us.
The fabulous surroundings and welcoming staff as well as the delicious afternoon tea itself made this a really relaxing, purely pleasurable treat – and I’m looking for another excuse to do it again very soon.
Jesmond Dene House Hotel, Jesmond Dene Road, Newcastle-upon-Tyne NE2 2EY
Tel: (0)191 212 3000