In this weeks post we decided to talk about one of the most famous British traditions – the Afternoon Tea. This distinguished custom dates back to the reign of Queen Victoria and was first initiated by one of her ladies-in-waiting the Duchess of Bedford, Anna Maria Stanhope. This particular story goes like this:
The Duchess experienced ‘a sinking feeling’ in the afternoon at around four o’clock, so in an attempt to ease herself she would order her servants to sneak her tea along with some bread stuffs. After a while this routine began a social gathering where she invited her friends to join her for a traditional five o’clock tea.
The Afternoon Tea menu contained small cakes, bread scones and small sandwiches accompanied with tea. This social practice quickly gained popularity and became a favourite among other social hostesses.
Evidently we are also big fans of the Afternoon Tea tradition.. and who wouldn’t be a fan of some social catch up with friends over cakes and tea. For this weeks’ Afternoon Tea we decided to go to the Orangery at Kensington Palace.
The Orangery in itself has a fascinating historical story. Located in the beautiful formal gardens in the grounds of Kensington Palace, the Orangery was primarily the setting for Queen Anne’s sophisticated court entertainment. The venue boasts with magnificently high ceilings and astounding 18th century architecture. Nowadays the Orangery is a well known relaxed and elegant setting for breakfast or lunch and the only royal palace in London where you can enjoy an Afternoon Tea. The menu is absolutely delicious with simple English dishes.
Hint: Try the Earl Grey Blue Flower tea also known as Lady Grey for a traditional Earl Grey taste blended with real blue mallow blossoms – definitely an original.