Mad Hatter’s Tea, Sanderson Hotel
The famous Long Bar at the Sanderson is just the place to grab a first date drink. However, the lovely courtyard is the place you take someone you’ve become rather romantically fond of over time.
With marble tables, white awnings and a central water feature, this place is pretty Zen for a luxe hotel. Taking afternoon tea here is a more modern take on the stuffy richly furnished rooms of grand hotels. Less for mother-daughter trips, more for cheeky day dates where you can trip into Soho after a few glasses of good champagne, and a bit too much sugar.
48 of your finest pounds for a savoury platter with a smoked salmon, quail egg and caviar scotch egg, a teeny Wiltshire ham and applewood croque-monsier, a Cornish crab and herb éclair and a green cucumber and cream cheese sandwich on fresh lime bread.
They are far more serious about their sweet selection which is whimsical, creative and steers away from trad offerings. Red velvet ladybirds sit alongside blue caterpillars, magic marshmallow mushrooms, carrot meringue, banana bread in a butterfly shape, scones and the absolute highlight, a Drink Me potion composed of lemon curd and creamy goodness, sucked through a dinky straw.
If you’re not quite buzzing, ask for a little passion fruit ice-cream garden pot topped with chocolate soil.
Oh and champagne, a crisp glass of Perrier- Jouet to start or an insanely delicate selection of teas.
It’s your 3rd or 4th date and time to give the late nights a break. If you’re really romantic you’ll ask them to take the afternoon off work. Then meet for tea at 2pm, and sip on both tea and champagne as you bite off morsels and discuss favourites. As you start to feel a little delirious, wrap things up and wander to nearby Berner’s Tavern for afternoon Negronis and some sobering chips.
Don’t eat it all, your pulse will race.