Afternoon Tea at Cliveden
Afternoon Tea with a Twist
Sandwiches intended for afternoon tea are dainty trifles, pleasing to the eye and palate, but too flimsy to allay hunger where it exists.'
Mrs Beeton 1892
The tradition of taking Afternoon Tea was reputedly introduced by Anna Maria, seventh Duchess of Bedford, in the early 1840’s to appease her ‘sinking feeling’ in the long hours between an early luncheon and a late supper. She asked for a pot of water, bread and butter and cakes; and brewed her own tea.
In a letter to her brother-in-law, sent from Windsor Castle in 1841, she writes: 'I forgot to name my old friend Prince Esterhazy who drank tea with me the other evening at 5 o'clock...’ By the end of the decade Afternoon Tea was a widespread social event. The small, crust-less sandwiches, biscuits, and cake were easy to eat without soiling gloves, prior to a fashionable promenade in Windsor Great Park.
Indulge yourself with a Royal Windsor afternoon tea with a twist:
Meadow Afternoon Tea at Coworth Park
Coworth Park’s elegant Drawing Room enjoys views over 240 acres of Berkshire countryside. The Meadow afternoon tea includes freshly-made sandwiches, scones and classic pastries with a twist, accompanied by a tea menu of over 20 varieties. This includes Coworth Park’s own Meadow Blend, containing lavender picked from the hotel’s grounds. A special gluten-free afternoon tea is also available.
From £32 per person
Reservations: 01344 876 600
Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea
The Oakley Court Hotel, located on the banks of the River Thames, offers a Gentleman’s afternoon tea. Instead of cakes and scones it features smashed avocado on toast with soft boiled eggs, fish fingers with tartare sauce, scotch eggs, sausage rolls and root vegetable crisps, served with a bottle of Windsor Knot Beer.
Price: £32.50 per person
Reservations: 01753 609988 firstname.lastname@example.org
Perfect Picnics on The Long Walk
Windsor Carriages offers locally made picnics in proper hampers to accompany their horse-drawn carriage tours lasting 30, 60 or 90 minutes. Relax and enjoy al-fresco eating at the top of The Long Walk in Windsor Great Park, facing Windsor Castle.
Tour price from £50 - £160 depending on length.
Picnics cost £25 per two people
Reservations essential: 07803 720084
Floating Afternoon Tea
Enjoy afternoon tea on board a restored 100 year old wooden River boat, floating down Cliveden reach, the most beautiful stretch of the River Thames. Belmont is a 33-foot Thames slipper launch, built in the 1930’s. She accommodates up to four guests with a hamper of finger and open sandwiches, an assortment of cakes and pastries, mini scones, clotted cream, raspberry compote and tea of your choice. If desired, Champagne adds fizz to the occasion. Belmont is available to hire on an hourly basis or for the day from April until October. A river cruise to Bray takes 1 hr, and to Windsor takes 2.5 hours.
Boat hire: First hour £185, subsequent hour £125.
Picnic £37 per person
Reservations: 01628 668561
On the River Afternoon Tea
Take to the River Thames in a classic 1960’s built motor cruiser. This two hour afternoon tea cruise involves a gentle journey downstream to Windsor, or upstream to Maidenhead and back. Sit back in comfort and take in the passing river sights including a lock, marinas, spectacular houses and beautiful scenery. Your afternoon tea includes a selection of sandwiches, fresh scones served with clotted cream & jam, fresh strawberries & cream, tea & coffee.
Boat hire: from £265 for up to 8 people from Oakley Court Hotel or Bray Marina; £300 for groups up to 12 people from Oakley Court Hotel or Maidenhead.
Afternoon Tea packages at £12 or £15.50 per person
Reservations: Steve on 07977 448 117