1). Rocke Cottage Tearooms in the Clun Valley in Shropshire won the Top Tea Place in the Tea Council Awards 2011. The judges praised the pleasing surroundings, warm welcome and quietly efficient service in the tearooms whose history dates back to the 17th century, and which is themed in the style of the 1920s and 1930s. The Clun area was immortalised in A.E Housman’s poem:
“Clunton and Clunbury, Clungunford and Clun, Are the quietest places, Under the Sun”
2). Claridges won the Top LondonTea Place in the Tea Council Awards 2011. The judges were impressed by the hotel’s exceptional service, great quality tea and the extensive knowledge of the staff. The five-star Art Deco hotel, in London’s Mayfair, traces its history back to 1812, and has played host to royalty – including Queen Victoria – as well as stars, and statesmen.
3). The Langham in London lays claim to be ”the place where the tradition of afternoon tea was born over 140 years ago”. It was the 2010 winner of the Top London Tea Place, with tea served in the hotel’s Palm Court. A variation, served in the hotel’s Artesian Bar, is G and T Tiffin, a Beefeater 24 gin cocktail that is included along with the afternoon tea.
4). The Berkeley Hotel’s Pret a Portea gives a modern twist to the afternoon tea, drawing inspiration from leading fashion designers and trends of the season, a fashionista’s tea, with biscuits and cakes shaped and coloured appropriately…
5). Bettys has been serving up teas in Yorkshire since 1919 and now has branches in Harrogate, York, Northallerton and Ilkley, and serves more than one million customers a year in its cafes.
6). The Pump Room has been at the social heart of Bath for more than two centuries, and nowadays offers morning coffee, lunches and afternoon tea, to the accompaniment of classical music from a trio, all located next to and above the Roman Baths.
7). Enjoy “the world’s only truly English cup of tea” at Tregothnan’s Tea Bar in Cornwall. The Tea Bar is situated near the Tregothnan tea plantations which were the first in England to produce tea.
9). The Willow Tea Rooms in Glasgow offer afternoon tea at its most stylish – the tea rooms were designed by architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
10). The Angel Hotel in Abergavenny in Wales won the award for the Top City and Country Hotel – a new award only introduced last year – in The Tea Council Awards 2011, and was praised for its “excellent range of teas with an extensive variety, served with perfection by dedicated staff who are happy to advise on the choice of teas available, all of which are described well in the informative and tempting menu. Flavoursome sandwiches, wonderful scones and truly delicious cakes and pastries, created and made in house by Tearoom Manager and superb Baker, Sally Lane, surpassed all expectations”.
11). Overlooking the River Great Ouse in the market town of Ely you will find Peacocks Tearoom. Offering all you would expect from an award winning, family-run English tearoom – a warm welcome, traditional cream teas, a homely atmosphere, a quirky menu and a selection of teas from every continent.
12). Can you tell a Darjeeling from a Ceylon? If not perhaps consider a Tea masterclass. Run by two of the country’s leading tea experts you can attend a one day seminar in Mayfair, London where you will be taught everything from why all teas are different to how to brew the perfect cup.