Cost – £41.00 (June 2022)
Parking and Access – There is a small car park available right next to the building. There are steps up to the entrance, with an alternate sloping route available. However, there is a small step to get into the building.
There are toilets available as you enter the building. These are accessible on the flat once you are inside.
Background – I was searching on the internet to see if there were any Platinum Jubilee Afternoon Tea offerings nearby. Sadly, there weren’t any. However, i happened to notice the Secret Sconery come up. It was not very nearby, but looked very interesting. We had to try it out!
The Secret Sconery is the base for The English Cream Tea Company, who send out Afternoon Tea hampers for people to have at home. They are not open as a tea room on a regular basis. However, they run a few special Afternoon Tea sessions each year.
Options Available – There were no options for this Afternoon Tea.
Contents – Twelve small triangular sandwiches (coronation chicken, smoked salmon with cream cheese, roast beef), four small round sandwiches (jam pennies), a mini prawn cocktail. A small jelly. One large fruit scone. A pot of each of strawberry and elderflower jam, blackcurrant jam, raspberry and blackberry jam and lemon curd, plus a pot of clotted cream. Two small sco-nuts each. A mini pavlova, a shortbread crown, a chocolate brownie and a thin slice of Victoria sponge. A glass of prosecco, plus your choice of tea from a large selection.
Comments – We were shown through to the tea room at the side of The Secret Sconery, and shown to our table. It is only a small room, containing just five or six tables. We had a table by the window, overlooking a small terrace.
The table was laid with a white linen table cloth and red and blue linen napkins.
There was a round white plate each, a white cup and saucer, a white jug of milk and a white sugar bowl containing pink sugar!
The table was decorated with mini cut out crowns and Union Flags. There was also a small vase of red, white and blue flowers.
Next to our table there was a cardboard cut-out of the Queen!
We were brought a glass of Prosecco and a pink lemonade (for me) after we sat down, and our tea order was taken. We both chose the standard English breakfast tea.
The atmosphere in the room was very friendly. The ladies who were serving the Tea were chatty, friendly and cheerful.
The owner of The English Cream Tea Company visited each table to say hello, and to check our outfits. We had been asked to wear red, white and blue, in order to qualify for an extra gift. Everyone in the room had made the effort, and we were each given a small jar of passion fruit and lemon curd to take home.
The first part of the Afternoon Tea arrived first. We were given a black three-tier cake stand with round white, scallop edged plates. The bottom contained the jams and cream, the middle had the prawn cocktails with a little wooden spoon each and the top layer contained the sandwiches.
The tea then arrived in a round white teapot. The milk jug was already on the table. The tea was a good strength for us both. We were offered a refill when we needed it later.
The prawn cocktails were very good. I haven’t had one in years!
The sandwiches were tiny! The triangles were half the ‘normal’ size. Also, there were uneven numbers of both the beef and the salmon sandwiches, so we had to choose which we wanted. The jam pennies were a nice touch – they are apparently the queen’s favourite.
Despite their small size, the sandwiches were very well filled and were tasty. What we had probably equated to the usual four sandwiches, I don’t see why they were cut so small.
When we had finished our sandwiches, the cake stand was taken away. It then returned with the scones and jellies on the middle layer, and three small cakes each on the top layer.
We each had a jelly set in a small tea cup. We had two different flavours – one red, one orange. I enjoyed my jelly, but my companion wasn’t so keen!
The ladies then came round with a rectangular Victoria sponge, which they gave us each a thin slice of, along with a pot of whipped cream. This was put on our plate that we were using for the scone. It would have been better put on the plate with the other cakes. There was space for it.
My one big disappointment was the scone. The place was called the Secret Sconery, and we had been given four different jams and curds, but there was only one scone each! How were you supposed to try all of the lovely jams? I would rather have had two smaller scones than just the one larger one. It was a shame.
Luckily, the scone was reasonably large, and I managed to carefully slice mine into three layers. This allowed me to try each of the three delicious jams. The lemon curd, I’m afraid, I ate with a teaspoon.
There was enough clotted cream for us both to use on all three layers of scone.
Whilst we were eating our scones, we were given a small bowl containing four small, warm ‘sconuts’. These were made from frying scone mixture, then coating it in cinnamon sugar. I thought these were really yummy!
Finally, we came to the cakes.
The Victoria sponge was good, but the slice was far too thin! We had to ask for a fork to eat it with, as it collapsed when we tried to pick it up!
The mini pavlova had blueberries and a slice of strawberry on top – red, white and blue. The shortbread crown was very tasty, but too small!
Then there was the brownie…… Wow! This was one super delicious brownie!! It was soft and squidgy, almost fudgy. And it was topped with a gold crown. It was really, really good! Apparently, it has won awards. I’m not surprised!
Service was attentive and friendly. The ladies were all happy to chat with us, and told us various stories about the company and how it started. The atmosphere in the room was relaxed and friendly.
This wasn’t a cheap Afternoon Tea, but there were several components to it that you wouldn’t normally get. It was well themed around the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. It was a very enjoyable special event.
All opinions expressed in this review are my own. The photographs are all my own.
I remain completely anonymous and always pay for my Afternoon Teas. They are never gifted to me by the businesses reviewed.
I am the legal copyright holder of the content and images on this blog.