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.
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.