On the last day of the extended Jubilee weekend, my friend and I visited The Manor Hotel near Datchet, Windsor for a spot of afternoon Tea. This whole experience was courtesy of Groupon UK, who asked Back to the Roots to write a review into one of its foodie offers. Excited by the thoughts of finger sandwiches, warm scones and lashings of tea, I picked the afternoon tea for two with bubbly, which was available at the time for £19 for two people - a 52% discount.
We turned up around 3pm on the very miserable Tuesday afternoon and unfortunately encountered problems before we even stepped foot in the hotel. The website said that there was plenty of parking, which there was not, but luckily we found a spot on the road and hurried into the building and out of the rain.
|The Manor Hotel, outside Windsor|
The Manor Hotel was very welcoming, clean and bright, with light oak floors which gave off a modern yet classic feel to the place. We were sat in a very quiet dining room with only one other table, but with many noisy people sat around a bar at the far end watching the Jubilee celebrations. The remnants of two afternoon teas sat either side of our table, which unfortunately took a good ten minutes to be cleared away even though the dining room was so quiet. Even so, we looked forward to the food which was soon to arrive.
The staff were really friendly, and we were brought a glass of bubbly with a strawberry sitting delicately at the bottom very promptly – to which I took a sip and then handed it to my lucky friend who wasn’t in possession of car keys!
Soon after, we were served tea and brought our selection of sandwiches and sweet treats. Scrumptious sandwiches of cheese and tomato, cream cheese and cucumber and tuna were arranged underneath scones with fresh cream and jam, as well as a selection of cakes.
We merrily ate our sandwiches and drank our tea while listening to Il Divo-esq mood music. However, we were both craving savoury food following a weekend of too much cake, so a couple more sandwiches wouldn’t have been wasted on us.
|Afternoon tea for two|
|Delicate finger sandwiches|
|Amazing scones - jam or cream first?|
|More yummy treats|
Next were the scones, which must have been the best I have ever tasted! Gorgeously moist and warm with a good hint of vanilla, we layered ours heavily with jam and clotted cream, trying not to bring up the Devon or Cornwall debate, and enjoyed them immensely.
|The perfect afternoon tea|
We ate every last speck of the scones and then moved our eyes onto the final desserts. At the top sat a tiny morsel of carrot cake, dwarfed by a lump of gooey cheesecake. If like us, you worked your way upwards, it was too much to face by that point! But I duly gave them both a taste test and they were indeed scrummy!
The food was all beautifully presented; however finding a chip on a tea cup was a little bit disappointing. Although it wasn’t The Ritz, the price reflected this, and it was still a really great taster of tea time treats. A couple more sandwiches instead of the piece of cheesecake might have balanced out the taste buds a little, but those scones were fantastic, and I could have eaten a few more (...maybe, my stomach was quite stretched at this point!)
Having a proper afternoon tea in a nice establishment has long been on my foodie to-do list. It seems so quintessentially British – a perfect end to the Jubilee celebrations. This is an experience everyone should have on a rainy afternoon and I would highly recommend it. Although it is something I really enjoyed, I am unsure whether I would do it again, as it still shocks me at how much it costs across the country - a mark up probably due to tourism. Afternoon tea anywhere I think is a heck of a price to pay, but it you find somewhere that serves beautifully warm scones as well as The Manor Hotel, I believe that makes a good enough afternoon tea in itself.
|All dressed up for high tea|
A big thanks to Groupon UK!