Afternoon Tea at The Goring Hotel London

The Goring
The Goring

One of London’s oldest family run hotels and with a Royal following (it was a favourite of the Queen Mother but most memorable in modern times for hosting the Duchess of Cambridge the night before the Royal wedding), it offers an exquisite afternoon tea.

The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London

High Tea Society had the privilege of taking afternoon tea at the Goring Hotel in London. One of London’s oldest family run hotels and with a tradition of a Royal following (it was a favourite of the Queen Mother but probably most memorable in modern times for hosting the Duchess of Cambridge the night before last year’s Royal wedding), it offers an absolutely exquisite afternoon tea.

Awarded the British Tea Guild Council Award of Excellence each year from 2008-2012, afternoon tea at the Goring Hotel is served in the Terrace which overlooks the beautiful Goring Gardens. When we visited on a crisp autumn day, children were playing croquet on the lawn whilst people of all ages and backgrounds took afternoon tea. You would not have known the place was busy as the incredible staff managed to keep the atmosphere to something very personal and relaxing.

The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London

We had two choices, the Traditional Afternoon Tea or the Bollinger Tea of which we chose the former.

The afternoon tea starts with an amouse bouche served in a small glass. This particular one was made of lobster, crab, chicken and egg, essentially turned into a mousse. The flavours were stunning and quite unexpected – we could detect every ingredient. This was followed by our tea, the Goring’s own. We chose silver needle and premier Darjeeling, both delicate and easily sipped on for the entire afternoon.

The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London

Then you are presented with a cake stand containing a selection of finger sandwiches, scones, cakes and desserts.

The sandwiches were again, excellent. Three fillings were included – smoked salmon, guinea fowl and mushroom, prawn and crayfish, along with egg mayonnaise. All were well stocked with fillings and we both found ourselves wanting to go home and cook with guinea fowl which has a strong flavour but not overwhelmingly game.

The scones, two plain and two fruit were served with Devonshire clotted cream and a selection of Tiptree Essex jams. They were warm, very fresh and fluffy, just the way scones should be.

The cakes and desserts were something else. We were presented with a chocolate cream chocolate éclair, lemon shortcake with strawberry mousse, roulade which had similar flavours to Victoria sponge, a macaron, tartlet of summer fruits and the wonderful Eton mess. Again, the cakes were faultless; both of us found us wanting more Eton mess which was full of surprises and beautiful flavours.

To top it off, at the very end of our afternoon which turned into early evening as we were so happy and relaxed, we were served with the piece de resistance, an exquisite trifle with high quality vanilla cream, sherry and strawberries. It was, in the words of my guest, mind blowing, and the perfect way to finish what was a truly memorable afternoon in a truly remarkable venue.

A special note must be made here of the staff – their service went above and beyond, combined with the sheer quality of the food and venue, they made it an absolutely wonderful afternoon, one to hopefully be repeated many times in the future. I now completely understand why it’s a Royal favourite. The food was of faultless quality. Fit for a future queen. The tea was the Goring’s own. We chose to have Premier Darjeeling and Silver Needle.

The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London

The Goring Hotel Afternoon Tea Menu

Traditional Afternoon Tea:

  • Egg starter
  • Finger sandwiches
  • Fresh scones with Devonshire clotted cream
  • Chocolate éclair
  • Lemon shortcake with strawberry mousse
  • Roulade
  • Macaron
  • Tartlet of summer fruits
  • Eton mess
  • Sherry, vanilla cream and strawberry trifle
The Goring Hotel London
The Goring Hotel London

The Bollinger Tea:

  • A glass of Bollinger
  • Egg starter
  • Strawberries and cream
  • Finger sandwiches
  • Fresh scones with Devonshire clotted cream
  • Chocolate éclair
  • Lemon shortcake with strawberry mousse
  • Roulade
  • Macaron
  • Tartlet of summer fruits
  • Eton mess
  • Sherry, vanilla cream and strawberry trifle

 

Katherine MacGregor
Katherine MacGregor

Recently refurbished by designer Tim Gosling, the Goring feels opulent yet tranquil. The bar that you walk through to access the terrace is dark and comfortable, with the terrace bright and airy, making the perfect contrast between the interior of the hotel and its garden. It was designed to feel cosy and intimate and succeeds in doing so.

The Goring’s own China was used, all bright yellow, the plates with a silhouette of founder, Otto Richard Goring in the middle.

People from a variety of backgrounds were there. A small wedding party were seated at one end of the room, in the middle a group of ladies in their late twenties and in another corner an elderly couple with their family having a celebration. All had made an effort to dress up (smart casual is the dress code) and it felt very classy but not stuffy.

The Goring Hotel was an exquisite experience that was good value with faultless savouries and cakes along with non-pretentious, friendly but not over-the-top service. You could comfortably take anyone there and they would feel at home in this very British institution. Should the Duchess of Bedford be around today, one would imagine this would be a favourite.

The Goring Hotel London:

15 Beeston Place, London SW1W 0JW

When:

Any time of year but spring and summer would mean you could enjoy the outdoor Terrace

Cost:

Traditional Afternoon Tea £37.50, The Bollinger Tea £47.50

Prices are correct at the time of publishing, but subject to change. Please contact the venue for further details.

Katherine MacGregor

Spent my twenties seeing/eating my way around the world then London's East End. Now a returned expat in Wellington with Mr Man & 2 bonkers munchkins.

Articles by Katherine