The Academy – Bloomsbury

Many places do Afternoon Tea including cafes and restaurants but having it in a hotel seems to make it extra special. A weekend afternoon with the girls meant treating ourselves to such an Afternoon Tea.

The Academy Hotel in a Georgian townhouse in the heart of Bloomsbury was our venue. Afternoon Tea was booked for the courtyard garden, but as it was not as warm as we had hoped, we asked to be seated indoors. We were given our table in the Conservatory.

The Conservatory had canopies that shielded the direct sunlight making it a comfortable seating area, yet still maintaining good light. The room had a lovely view of the courtyard garden and its ornamental water feature. Striped sofas, armchairs, a big coffee table, glassed bookcases and lamps was our relaxing area for the afternoon.

The waiter gave us such friendly and professional service. Before he brought out our teas, we were asked if we were ready for our scones to be put in the oven. The scones are baked to order which was such a nice touch.

The tea selection at The Academy were all loose teas. The black blends were Palace Breakfast, Palace Earl Grey and Afternoon at the Palace which was a signature blend of Darjeeling and China teas. There was also a Chinese Sencha green tea and a Jasmine with Flowers tea. There was a choice of two herbal infusions: Peppermint and Chamomile Flowers.

The Academy allowed us to try different teas throughout the afternoon. My tea of choice was the Wild Berries fruit infusion. This deep red cup of tea was a blend of whole strawberries, blackberries, bilberries, elderberries and raspberries. It had a sweet aroma and taste.

As soon as our scones were baked, our waiter provided us with the classic three tiered Afternoon Tea. It was as delightful to the eye as well as to the palate.

A good variety of finger sandwiches on soft white and brown bread were the start. The sandwiches were smoked salmon, ham and mustard, cheese and tomato, and egg. The staff were more than happy to replace one of the salmon sandwiches with a cucumber sandwich.

The warm scones were the highlight. There were plain ones and fruit ones. Together with the little pots of preserve and clotted cream, they were so tasty.

The top tier of the cakes were little chocolate and fruit based delights. The petit fours included glace ones which were the fruit and chocolate tartlets and decorated tiny layered cakes; sec ones which were the pistachio, chocolate and vanilla macarons. The small size meant that we were able to try little mouthfuls.

The Afternoon Tea at The Academy was lovely in every way. All of the food, sweet and savoury was of a high quality. The atmosphere, staff and service was spot on.

The Academy Hotel, 21 Gower Street, Bloomsbury, London, WC1E 6HG

Rating: ★★★★½

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