Cost – £16.95 (June 2016)
Background – Tiffins Tea Emporium is situated on the main street in the pretty Suffolk town of Long Melford. We visited the café during a trip to see the local Melford Hall, an interesting historic hall in the town which is managed by the National Trust. As usual, I went on the internet to find an afternoon tea nearby when I knew we were going to the area. A couple of places looked interesting and we chose Tiffins. We will have to go to Long Melford again to try the other venue!
The Tea Emporium looked interesting from the outside. There is an area which sold some delicious looking cakes to one side and the tea room to the left. We were shown to a table in a small area behind the main tea room. However, it was a beautiful day and we noticed there was a small garden to the rear of the property so we asked if we could move to the outside area for our tea. There were a few tables set up outside in a small sheltered courtyard. It was very pleasant.
Contents – 4 triangular sandwiches (choose from a list of four different fillings. We both chose chicken and Bacon), 1 fruit scone (ready filled with strawberry jam and clotted cream), mini dessert of red jelly, a mini dessert of chocolate mousse and a slice of your choice of cake from a large selection. Pot of your choice of tea (one refill permitted).
Comments – We were initially shown to an inside table right next to a heater that was on and very hot. As the sun was shining and it was a lovely warm day we asked to transfer to the outside courtyard instead.
As usual the tea was served first in a large patterned teapot. I had also ordered a coke as it was a hot day, which arrived in a Kilner jar with a handle and a lid with a straw. The china was mismatched vintage pieces. The tea itself was served on a three tier cake stand with round white plates.
The sandwiches were fresh and tasty and were well filled. It was nice to be able to choose the filling. The choice of fillings was good and it made a change to have four of the same type. I enjoyed this part.
The scone was good, tasty and fresh but quite small. It was pre-loaded with jam and clotted cream which I dislike, partly because I can get far more on!. Only one half had been filled and the scone sandwiched back together. This means if you like to eat half at a time, as I do, one half has all the jam and the other half has all the cream. This was disappointing.
The two mini desserts were completely different from those advertised in the menu which was a shame. We were not told in advance that this would be the case. The chocolate mousse was quite tasty but the red jelly was uninteresting. I am not a fan of these mini desserts anyway as they are difficult to eat and found these rather disappointing as well.
The choice of cakes was very good. I chose a slice of chocolate fudge cake whilst my husband chose carrot and orange cake. He made the best decision as mine was not a good fudge cake and was a spectacularly small slice. His was rather larger and was apparently very tasty.
We were even more disappointed when we went to pay for our teas and saw the sizes of the slices of cake on sale in the shop area and also the size of the far larger scones available!
Tea was a choice of loose teas. We were ‘permitted’ one refill with the cost of our tea. The tea was hot enough but got very strong quite quickly. Service was reasonably attentive.