Mad hatter’s tea party at the Sanderson Hotel

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Just because I wasn’t blogging in the last two months of 2015 doesn’t mean I wasn’t enjoying afternoon tea. Come on now, a girl’s got to live.

My friend and I met for the Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea at The Sanderson Hotel in Central Lodnon – it was a belated birthday treat for us both and an early Christmas celebration, and I would love to say that it did not disappoint but… I’m not sure that’s true.

The choice of tea arrived first, each ‘drink me’ bottle aptly named after a character in Alice in Wonderland. The teapot also fit the theme, as did the milk jug and cutlery, so at this point we were pretty damn excited.

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One of the best things about afternoon tea (in my humble opinion) is the overwhelming feeling of excitement that you feel when a tall tower of food arrives at your table. This one had grass, and cakes with eyes, and more ‘drink me’ bottles so what wasn’t to love?

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The first course of three sandwiches and a scotch egg was… okay. It certainly wasn’t a taste sensation and I don’t appreciate green bread – regardless of the theme – but the croque monsieur was delicious and I could have had three of them. In fact, I kinda wish I had.

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The scones were exquisite – and to me, they’re the most important part of an afternoon tea. Strawberry jam and clotted cream didn’t disappoint, and the fact that The Sanderson had a member of staff dedicated to offering extra scones to customers from a giant Mad Hatter’s hat was truly wonderful. The ‘drink me’ bottle of pineapple and something-or-other was very refreshing and a lovely end to the meal.

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Or at least, we thought it was the end of the meal. Shortly after we’d eaten all the scones we could manage, this arrived…

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Now I love food that looks all intriguing and exciting, but I don’t ever want food that looks better than it tastes. I don’t ever want to look at something exciting, only to dig a little and discover it’s quite dull. And yes, that’s what happened here.

This pretty little flower pot with its exciting soil turned out to be ice cream, but the weirdest texture ice cream I have ever had. The honeycomb on top was awesome but let’s face it – I could’ve got that from a Crunchy bar.

This was a really brilliant afternoon tea for three reasons:

  1. I got to spend time with one of my besties so quite frankly I could have been in McDonald’s and I’d have been happy,
  2. It was themed, and I really do like a good theme,
  3. I had scones, and I’m at my happiest when scones are involved.

But taste wise, it didn’t quite compare to this one. I shall continue the hunt, for purely selfless reasons – obviously.


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