Having tea in London is very different than having tea at a café or coffee house in California.
And Afternoon Tea at the Palm Court Ritz London Hotel is not like any other tea experience you will have anywhere in the world!
When people hear or use the word “Ritz” or “ritzy”, you know they are talking about something being THE BEST, and that is exactly what Mom and I experienced when we went to Afternoon Tea at The Palm Court.
First of all, The Palm Court is a beautiful place. They have a dress code to encourage guests to look and act their very best, and it’s hard to imagine that anyone would want to show up to tea at The Palm Court not looking their best. NO basketball shorts, t-shirts, flip flops, or Ugg boots for this occasion - I got to wear my new suit, tie, and shoes.
And I have to say that I looked and felt pretty good! The staff and service at The Palm Court is first class all the way!
They make all of their guests feel like royalty, and Mom and I were treated to a special tour of the kitchen by Executive Chef John Williams, MBE.
Chef Williams is also Chairman of The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts, where Charles Prince of Wales is the Patron.
Chef Williams is an amazing and important chef with many honors and awards. What makes him even more impressive is how kind, fun, and generous he is; and how much he loves his work.
During the tour, we got to see the very first menu that was used at The Ritz, framed and hanging on the wall.
Chef Williams also found an actual letter that was written by the hotel founder Cesar Ritz, so he had it framed and it’s displayed on the wall as well.
He also let us go into the William Kent House, which is an 18th century building that used to be next door to The Ritz London Hotel but now it’s a part of the hotel.
They connected it to the hotel. The current owners of The Ritz bought the building, completely restored it, and it is MAGNIFICENT! It is used for private and important events.
Chef Williams let us sit at the enormous mahogany dining table in the William Kent Room. After our tour, we were seated for the Traditional Afternoon Tea, which of course isn’t just a cup of tea – it’s a feast of small sandwiches, pastries, cakes, scones with Cornish clotted cream (not butter!) and strawberry preserves, and a choice of 16 different teas! Mom had the Mint Infusion tea.
I wanted to try something new, so I ordered the Assam Tippy Orthodox, which is a rich, black tea from Northern India that has a slightly red color to it.
Delicious! Now imagine enjoying this afternoon tea with live piano music playing…Yes, they have a great pianist named Ian Gomes, who has been the pianist at The Ritz for 20 years.
Like I said, this is tea experience like nowhere else in the world. Mom and I are going back to England in September, and I think we’ll be stopping in for another Traditional Afternoon Tea at The Palm Court Ritz London Hotel.
I still have 15 more teas and a few cakes and sandwiches to try!