Afternoon tea in London has become a bit of a regular habit for me. My best friend and I tend to go twice a year (for her birthday and mine) and this year we even have one booked for Christmas. There is, however, a skill involved in booking these awesome afternoon teas. Being so organised that you can book six months earlier than you plan to visit. And that is exactly what we needed to do for this Charlie and the Chocolate Factory tea, especially as we wanted to go on a Saturday. Being one of the longest running and exciting teas it is certainly very popular. As I learnt during our visit, there is a very good reason for that.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Afternoon Tea
The One Aldwych is a beautiful hotel located not far from Waterloo bridge giving you the perfect excuse for my of my favourite walks in the city. Upon entering the hotel you are greeted by friendly and helpful staff and a spacious lobby bar. The seating for the afternoon tea is spread out among a mezzanine area over looking the lobby and the lobby bar. Our table was in the lobby bar, at first this felt a bit open but as other afternoon tea parties joined us, it didn’t feel so bad.
The table was set up ready for us including menus with gorgeous illustrations of the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory characters. We began by choosing our tea, there were some super fun options but as someone who doesn’t drink caffeine, I choose the only caffeine free option. My friend was even more cautions and went for an English breakfast tea. We went for the tea only option but the Charlie cocktails came out steaming and look incredible!
I think it is time we moved on to talk about the food. After all that is the highlight of an afternoon tea. Unlike many we have been to, this one bought the sandwiches out separate to the sweets. As someone who has a gluten and dairy free diet my options were a little plain and simple. However, my friend’s options and those that ‘normal’ customers get look very quirky. We both had the similar fillings but I missed out on the quiche and egg roll, gutted. Still I wasn’t gutted for long because then the sweets arrived…
As we were delivered our sweets our eyes really lit up, at the quirky and creativeness of the display but also at the sheer amount of food we were receiving. The gluten and dairy free sweets I was offered were so similar to my friends array that I was no longer gutted about the quiche and egg. From little bottles of chocolate milk to sticks of sweet flavour candy-floss. Our waitress explained all of the flavours and sweets too us but left the candy-floss flavour a secret. Despite spending a while trying to guess I couldn’t and then I totally forgot to ask what flavour it was. It did kinda taste like a mix of Skittles, Starburst and Fruitella, which let me just say was amazing.
Chocolate milk and candy-floss
In fact all of the flavours of the sweets were amazing. The eaton mess was light and fruity. The cake on a stick had the perfect amount of chocolate to accompany the lemon flavour. The chocolate milk was the perfect amount of chocolate and that is coming from someone who doesn’t really like chocolate. The scone was warm and perfectly round with the most amazing strawberry jam. Then to top it all off we were bought an extra chocolate cake which was also gluten and dairy free and tasted like chocolate heaven. Well I thought so on the first mouthful, by the third I was finding it a little bit rich.
All in all the flavours combined so well and none of it felt too sickly or heavy. It was possibly the first afternoon tea I have been to where I haven’t come out bloated. I think the fact the savoury and sweet came out separately meant we had an enforced break in the middle. We also really took our time spending more than the two hour time slot here. That is a record for us but I am also surprised and thankful we didn’t get asked to leave.
Afternoon tea at One Aldwych
Despite being sat in the open lobby, everything else about this afternoon tea was perfect. The exciting flavours and sweet twist to the classic afternoon tea has genuinely made this one of my favourites.
Have you been to the Charlie and the Chocolate factory afternoon tea? What did you think?