24 Karat Gold Afternoon Tea

The 24 Karat Gold Afternoon Tea at St James Court Hotel was in one word: extravagant. It took elements of regular afternoon tea and than elevated them far beyond expectations. Not just champagne, but champagne with actual gold flakes in it; not just egg mayonnaise sandwiches, but boiled, gold-dusted quail’s eggs in chive tarts; not just salmon, but caviar and salmon. Never in my life has such a foray of opulence been laid out in front of me.

The staff was brilliant. Everyone was kind, courteous and attentive. In particular, I’d like to thank Luigi for putting up with a million and one questions.

The afternoon started with a half bottle of Luxor Gold Leaf Champagne. It was delicious. It literally tasted like drinking money. (I joked to Sam that we should pump our stomachs and then go to cash for gold.) I ordered a teapot of Kir Royal tea which was fabulous. I highly recommend it. The fruity, berry flavour was great and no sugar was needed to sweeten it. Sam had a pot of Lapsang Soughing, but only because that’s the tea that the characters drink in “Zoolander”. Anyways.

And then the sandwiches came out. Oh lord! There was quail’s egg and egg mayonnaise;  Comte cheese and chorizo; smoked salmon, caviar and mascarpone; Mediterranean vegetables, pesto, and gold dusted black olives; and minted cucumber on beetroot bread. I had two favourites: the smoky rich Comte cheese really knocked the chorizo sandwich out of the park for me, and the freshness of the minted cucumber on the beetroot bread was awesome. Sam couldn’t get over the salmon and caviar on rye bread. He gushed about it.

Then came a pre-dessert blackberry sorbet and fruit palate cleanser. It was a bit big for one mouthful, but I’m never one to complain about two much fruit. Then the cakes and scones came out. They were just beautiful. Beautiful. There were plain, chocolate chip and sultana scones with clotted cream and strawberry preserves. Sam preferred the sultana scones, and I preferred the chocolate chip. What a surprise.

I gleefully started tucking into the sweets. First there was a champagne gold leaf jelly (champagne jello to my American readers) with white chocolate decorations. It was like a fabulously chic version of a jello shot. Then there were the strawberry tarts with gold leaf. Sam and I both agreed that these were our favourite desserts. The pastry was crisp, the filling scrumptious, the strawberry just the right amount of sweet and tart. On the second tier of the dessert tray we had beautifully decorated opera cake and white chocolate mouse with gold leaves in a white chocolate shell. The detail that went into the tea was what impressed me most. Everything was perfect. The name and address of the hotel was even stamped onto a chocolate spear on the opera cake in gold.

teacupsstudying menuteapouring champagnechampagne glassIMG_8976sandwichessandwiches close upsam eatingdessert cleanserchampagne jellytartcakesopera cakewhite chocolate
The white chocolate mousse looks like a Golden Snitch right?

clotted cream
sconesdessertsbrownies         in mirror barlight fixtureslibrarypetting dogfountain          leaving teaoutside taj hoteloutside 2
The tea starts at £35 (£85 with champagne).

I was a guest of the St James Court Hotel and the voucher for the meal in exchange for review was given to me by Zomato, however, as always, all opinions are forever my own.

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  • Looks like so much fun! I love afternoon too- you just feel so fancy lol
    Melanie @

  • This looks so wonderfully extravagant and fancy! I do love a high tea and have been to quite a few but gold champagne – oh my, that’d be such a treat! Does the gold do anything to the taste? I’ve always wondered that! X

    • The gold champagne was quite strong! Hehe. It didn’t add anything to the taste but it did make me feel uber-extravagant! x

  • Wow, that looks amazing!! I don’t think I’ve ever seen ‘gold leaf’ written quite so many times!! That looks like such a fun place to go for a real celebration xxx

  • This sounds amazing! And the white chocolate mousse totally looks like a Golden Snitch!

    • I kept cracking jokes about it. Because HP jokes are the humour level that I never grew past. My favourite, “Mind if I slytherin ?” x

      • Haha I love it! Sounds like my kind of humor!

      • Psh, that’s just part of the best/worst pick-up line. “My basilisk wants to Slytherin your Chamber of Secrets.”

        • Ha, I was going for the one where Tom Felton almost replied to the girl’s tweet 😉 Lucky girl. x

  • Angie SilverSpoon

    I love the look of this tea, it looks so luxurious – It’s also great to have something a little different – we don’t want to get bored of afternoon tea!

    Lots of love,

    SilverSpoon London

  • Oh wow, super fancy…what a treat!!

  • This sounds and looks amazing, nothing beats a good afternoon tea but this goes way beyond afternoon tea!

    • That’s what I thought – it just went way beyond my expectations, and imagination, to be honest! x

  • Classy jello shots. Now that’s something I can definitely get behind!

    • Hahahaha. Right? Also it was strong. Like really strong. I may have unclassily gotten the giggles. x

  • oh. my. gosh. seriously amazing looking! So much gold. and yessss you found the snitch!

  • Oh. My. God. That looks soooo decadent!!
    I actually just had afternoon tea for the first time ever in my life… at a Twining’s shop in Bangkok, no less! It was great but this one (literally) takes the cake!

  • amitygardens

    So jealous.

  • Wow, you’re right, it looks like an afternoon tea like no other. This is the sort of thing that makes me wish I lived in London!x

  • It does look like a golden snitch! How funny!

    So, this looks great and all, but £85? That’s sort of ridiculous for afternoon tea, right?

    • This is true. If I had been going on my own aka not with Zomato I would never have gotten champagne. For quality, the £35 tea would be worth it.

      The £85 option is with the bottle of top-shelf champagne, which I’d never order for myself. Because….I can only afford prosecco. From Sainsburys.

      • LOL at your last comment! 🙂 I must have skimmed over the option of getting this without champagne – £35 is much more reasonable!

  • Wow!!! The afternoon tea is so wonderful and scrumptious. There is only a small amount of food but it is decorated in an elegant and stylish way.

    • It felt like a lot of food after I ate everything ;D But it is really beautiful and it was delicious! Thank you though! x

  • Wow, that’s gorgeous! And everything looks absolutely scrumptious!

  • Ana Valentin

    Im near tears with how beautiful that tea layout was! God, I plan on moving to England and you just pushed this idea even more. My boyfriend is set, so England 2017-2018 here I come! great post! Love reading your blog and hope to be en expat like you.

    • Amazing! Would you want to work here or go to grad school? Personally, I recommend both! 🙂 x

  • Ah I wouldn’t have been able to eat anything because it’s all so pretty! Looks like you had an amazing time 🙂


    • I had that problem at first two- especially with the cakes. They were just stunning. But once I realised how delicious they’d probably be, they stood no chance. xx

  • 10 points for the phrase ‘ foray of opulence ‘! xxx

  • You lead the most glamorous life. I’ve had some fancy high teas before, but never with GOLD! Your pictures are absolutely stunning. So how much does Sam love your blog now? 😉

    • I’d never had anything like it before either! It was awesome! I felt so lucky. Although I very un-glamourously made a pig of myself. Sam totally loves Rhyme & Ribbons. But I know he’d love it even if he didn’t get free food out of it because I love it like a baby. xx

  • Oh my goodness, bookmarking this for when I (hopefully) move to the UK! How fancy was this! xo

    • Move to the UK! Move to the UK! (It’s a bit of a tongue twister to chant!) x

      • yes yes! I’m applying to business schools in London, Leeds, and Edinburgh so we will see what happens. I’ll keep you updated 🙂

  • This one looks INCREDIBLE. (Love the Snitch and your befriending of the dog!)

  • hello from the blog hop! i was hoping to do high tea this weekend for my birthday! also – is that a clay greyhound next to the fireplace? too cute!

    • Ha, it is a clay greyhound! I was drawn to it like a mouth to flame. 🙂 I think birthday teas are the best! Happy early birthday! x

  • Miho

    this is really something! i’d never heard of afternoon tea here, but clearly it’s something special x

    • It was really great! They have two options – this one which was a special and a regular tea. I can’t vouch for the regular tea, but this one was lovely! x

  • Oh I would so love to visit there one day it looks bloody amazing

    • It was really special! I was so honoured to get the opportunity to do so. It’s not something I probably would have been able to do otherwise. x

  • This just oozes the word fancy from everything 🙂 Looks delicious!

  • I don’t think that I can handle all this fanciness.

  • It’s purely a royal post, haha! I love love love the food presentation.

    • Thanks Noor! Without blogging, I never would have gotten this opportunity so I tried to take as much of it in as possible. x

  • Oh my goodness, are you kidding me?! This looks amazing!! I just noted tea time at Harrod’s on my London to-do list, but I have to add this as well. You are a lucky girl! <3

    Pink Wings

    • Ohhh both good choices. But my personal favourite for tea is The Orangery at Kensington Palace. It’s just classic! Shh!!! Don’t tell 😉 x

  • Yes. Absolutely. Sign me up for this at once. And don’t be alarmed if you think you see me stuffing quail eggs into my pockets — it’s just your imagination.

  • Leah N

    Looked amazing! How fun!

  • Oh man. The champagne was excellent. And to be honest, quite strong! (Just the way I like it) xx

  • UMMM. This looks ridic! Sounds like you had an amazing time! I’ll definitely pass this on to my London gal pals! 🙂

  • What a fabulous place. Gorgeous teacups!

  • This sounds like such an amazing tea!! I love a good tea service, the food looks so good!

    • It was really fabulous. I wouldn’t recommend it for every day (because it’s expensive) but it’d be great for a special occasion! x

  • Whaaaaaat? This is ridiculous! Yet awesome. And that’s such a guy thing to order something based on a movie like Zoolander lol. Too funny!

    • Right?! I thought it was ridiculous too! But it did make me laugh. I think Sam can quote the entire Zoolander movie. x

  • Such an elegant tea and I love the white chocolate mousse!!

  • Miu

    It sounds delicious, but I also feel guilty when eating gold, like, it’s so expensive, why eat it?

    • Haha, so true! Although, I tell myself that i like cooking with saffron but never do because it’s so expensive. It literally costs more an ounce than gold. I guess gold lead is like the modern day equivalent of the Cleopatra pearl drinking ….except that her’s was probably legend and this isn’t! x

  • Andrea @GreenandTurquoise

    Wow, really? That looks delish! The white chocolate mousse is almost to cute to eat!
    Almost 😀

  • Wow! I had no idea! What a coincidence! xx

  • I read once about gold being put on top of food to aide digestion but it really freaked me out, did it feel weird in the champagne?

  • Oh cool to hear you’re part of Zomato bloggers too 🙂 I’m loving their Edinburgh stuff right now! I have to say this looks like the most sparkly, luxurious and fantastic afternoon tea! And loved that golden snitch dome thing 🙂

    • I’m loving it! And the London Zomato blog organiser I’ve meet is absolutely fantastic! xx

  • Wow that looks phenomenal – yum!!

  • oh. my. goodness.

    next time I CALL DIBBS on bring your plus one 🙂

  • Shikha (whywasteannualleave)

    I was excited to read your post on this as I absolutely loved it as well!! Your pics of it are gorgeous and I love the angles you’ve snapped all the different elements of the tea. Wasn’t everything just delicious and beautifully presented in equal measures?! I’ve been raving about it to anyone who’ll listen ever since! I went early in the New Year and it was the perfect post-Christmas treat 🙂 Here’s the link if you fancy a snoop