Cost – £17.00 per person (July 2020)
Parking and Access – We took our Tea out to Thetford Forest to eat as a picnic again. We went to the same picnic area we used previously – St Helen’s Picnic Area, near Santon Downham. There was plenty of parking available on the site. And a large area with grass, where we could have our picnic. However, the toilet block was still unavailable due to the pandemic.
Background – I reviewed Peacocks ‘normal’ Afternoon Tea in October 2013. At that time, it was only the seventh Afternoon Tea I had reviewed. This time, it is review number two hundred!! (there are actually already two hundred reviews, but one venue has been reviewed twice for the same Tea. So, I don’t count that one).
We discovered Peacocks were offering Afternoon Tea to take away when we were doing our first lockdown walk away from our home area, as restrictions first began to ease. Luckily, they are still offering this option, even though the Tea Rooms are now open. I am still rather nervous of being around others as I am in the vulnerable category, so this is a perfect option for people in my position.
This Afternoon Tea needs to be ordered in advance and can be either collected or delivered, if you live in the local area to Ely.
Contents per person – Four rectangular sandwiches each (ham and chutney, egg mayonnaise, cucumber and cream cheese and smoked salmon). One large fruit scone, a plastic pot containing an amount of raspberry jam and a plastic pot containing an amount of clotted cream. A large slice of mocha cake. A packet containing English Breakfast tea leaves. A Peacocks paper napkin.
Options available – It is possible to choose which flavour jam you get, from a choice of four. And there is a choice of cake, from five options. A bottle Prosecco can also be added for an extra charge.
Comments – In order to book our Afternoon Tea, we emailed our request to Peacocks. They then got back to us to confirm our choices and to take payment.
On arrival at the Tea Rooms, we collected our Afternoon Tea from outside, at the time we had arranged. We then travelled to Thetford to eat our Tea in one of the picnic areas in the forest there.
The Afternoon Tea was contained in a brown paper carrier bag.
Inside that there was a little box each, which contained the slices of cake.
Then there was a second, bigger box each, which contained the scone, jam and cream, and the sandwiches.
We took our smaller picnic basket with us. This contains green plastic plates and cutlery. We also took a couple of plastic glasses and some cold drinks, rather than attempt to brew tea in the forest!
Obviously, we also had to take our two-tiered cake stand with flower-patterned plates!
The sandwiches were made with one side in white bread and the other side in brown bread! The sandwiches were all very fresh and were well filled. The fillings were good classic fillings that most people would enjoy.
Our scones were a nice generous size. They also contained a good amount of fruit, were fresh and very tasty.
The jam and clotted cream were provided in two plastic tubs, each. We both chose raspberry jam from the four choices available. The jam was tasty and good. There was plenty for the large scone. There was also a good amount of clotted cream. In fact, it was a challenge to use all of it on the scones! We did, of course, somehow manage!!
Even though there was only one item in the cake section of our Afternoon Tea, we both really enjoyed it. It was such a change to have a decent sized slice of cake, rather than a few little bits of different things. Don’t get me wrong, I very much enjoy that option too. However, with the lockdown, it has been months since we had an actual slice of cake, and I had really missed it!!
We both chose the mocha cake from the five options available. It was fresh, moist and was absolutely delicious. It was also a good-sized slice, so we didn’t feel we needed anything else.
I have based my presentation score on the way the Afternoon Tea was presented on arrival. This Tea was well presented and was packed carefully.
Finally, I have based my service score on the service we received from the company, which was quick, efficient and helpful.