Dish With A Difference

We’re talking about: locally inspired afternoon teas

Despite a rise in healthy eating, decadent desserts are a luxury consumers can afford.

17 April 2019
  • The Dish: Amarena cherry and liquorice macaron topped with a silver jewel
  • The Place: Rotunda at Four Seasons Hotel London
  • The Chef: Sylvain Nicolas

What? Rotunda is unveiling its Crown Jewels Afternoon Tea, inspired by its royal surroundings.

Traditional finger sandwiches created by Rotunda’s executive chef, David Greenhill, will celebrate British classics, including egg mayonnaise with truffle oil, coronation chicken and minted cucumber.

But it’s the desserts where things get really interesting. Inspired by the Crown Jewels, executive pastry chef Sylvain Nicolas has created a selection of pastries fit for a queen.

Apart from the Amarena cherry and liquorice macaron topped with a silver jewel, there’s also a Yorkshire rhubarb, jasmine tea, Chantilly and strawberry combawa confit adorned with a crown. Joining the duo on the menu are a lemon meringue choux with hazelnut streusel and lime jelly, and a single-origin Madagascan Manjari chocolate tart with sansho berry and fresh raspberries topped with gold leaf.

Paying homage to Ten Trinity Square’s past incarnation as the hub of Britain’s trading routes, the Crown Jewels Afternoon Tea will include some of the world’s top teas too,with darjeeling from Makaibari to earl greys from Satemwa Estate in the Highlands of Malawi.

Local leaves aren’t left out either, with British-grown brews including Cornish peppermint tea and Cornish manuka brought to the Tregothan Estate in Cornwall over 200 years ago from New Zealand.


Where? Rotunda at Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square overlooks the Tower of London, which houses the royal jewels of past kings and queens of England.

For the ultimate luxury experience, guests can book a private roof terrace where they can enjoy the British pastime with a view over the iconic landmark and the River Thames.

“Afternoon tea is such a staple of British culture, so we wanted to honour that with a traditional menu inspired by the royal crown jewels just a short walk away from the impressive building at Ten Trinity Square,” said executive chef David Greenhill. “We have aimed to celebrate the best of British, highlighting some of the best teas and produce from around the country.”


Why? Food Spark has previously noted the innovations happening in afternoon teas, with many inspired by art, fashion or fairytales, like Rosewood’s Art Afternoon Tea. At Le Méridien Piccadilly, diners can tuck into mousse inside an edible chocolate pot as part of a Peter Rabbit-themed affair that also features the Magnificent Mushroom of strawberry ganache with a crunchy meringue stem.

Rotunda’s location-inspired afternoon tea is part of a broader trend for novel, experiential food,and it isn’t the only one taking its cue from local attractions this month.

The Stafford London is launching an afternoon tea that takes guests on a journey around the luxury boutiques, delis and shops that surround the five-star hotel and its restaurant, The Game Bird.

Its executive pastry chef, Magdalena Kubańska, has worked alongside six local stores to create the menu. It includes a Westcombe Cheddar scone with chives using cheese from Paxton & Whitfield, a cheesemonger which currently holds Royal Warrants by appointment to both Her Majesty the Queen and HRH The Prince of Wales.

The oldest hat shop in the world and creator of the bowler hat, Lock & Co is the inspiration behind a white chocolate and lime jelly top hat that forms part of the sweet selection, whileKubańska has used the perfume A Rose For – the latest addition to the Floris fragrance collection – as the base flavours in an English strawberry and rosewater cupcake.

Fashion-forward diners can enjoy a crisp almond shortbread tuxedo that pays homage to Henry Poole & Co, the Savile Row tailor thought to be the original designer of the dinner jacket. In a nod to shoemaker’s Foster & Son, there is a seasonal fruit trifle with crème Chantilly which comes served in a traditional shoe polish tin.

Finally, Kubańska has created a hollow chocolate cigar filled with a creamy chocolate and hazelnut mousse, inspired by the fat Cuban cigars at James J. Fox, a favourite of cigar-smoking Winston Churchill.

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