by Waverly W., 8 years old, Manhattan (writing from London)
The Mom here! If you’re anything like me, on any given day at around 3 or 4 p.m., you’ll find yourself unable to think about anything but eating and most likely grabbing a quick snack to get you through the rest of your work day. Some days I am able to see this coming and prepare for it in advance with some almonds and a piece of fruit. Other days, let’s just say if there is anything within my eyesight, it will get eaten. Including entire cakes.
The British have an entirely more civilized (civilised?) way of handling their midday hunger pangs. Afternoon Tea. We knew we wanted to experience this tradition while visiting London, and in the weeks before we came, I would go online to check out all our options and get excited looking at the pictures and trying t0 decide where to go. That’s how I found a great website called Afternoontea.co.uk where they have organized all the afternoon tea options by any category you can think of. It’s genius. Going to Scotland on a Thursday and fancy a vegan and nut free tea? Guess what? You have 17 options. See, I’m not kidding. Amazing. I’ve honestly never had more fun researching anything. It was too difficult for me to choose, so I let Waverly do it. It wasn’t easy for her either, but when she saw The Science Afternoon Tea at The Ampersand Hotel, that was it. Decision made. Here is her review….
Waverly here! It was really fun to look at all those different places we could have gone to for afternoon tea in London, but I’m definitely glad we picked The Science Tea! We went into The Drawing Room and it felt like you were in someone’s really cool living room or something like that. I loved the light blue walls – it was really home-y, but better – there was a table with all kinds of treats on it. I was like, “OK, I’m in heaven!”
Then Marco came and showed us to our seats and gave us the tea menu. There were three test tubes on the table filled with raspberry, yogurt, and chocolate crunchies and I couldn’t wait to sprinkle them on my scones! There was also a little wooden box and a brush – I opened it up and started digging around in the chocolate “dirt” to unearth a little cookie and a little chocolate dinosaur (they were so cute!!). I loved feeling like a Paleontologist but loved being able to eat what I found even more. 🙂
For tea we both got “Whole Peppermint Leaf” after hearing the teenager next to us talk about how good it was. They had lots of choices, like “Jade Sword” and “Phoenix Honey Orchid” (which is the one I’ll try next time I come here!) but we could smell the mint from our seats and it made us really want to try that one.Our tea was nice and minty, and like the name it had whole peppermint leaves in it. So much different from the mint tea we have at home in bags. It tasted way better, too!
A few minutes later, Marco came back with three plates of beautiful food and treats. He explained what was on each plate and I loved how the top plate had a theme of outer space. I was planning what to eat first when he came back again and did the most awesome thing! He had a pitcher of hot water and poured it over some dry ice that was underneath a Mint Chocolate Planet Mousse and suddenly the whole thing came alive and started smoking! It was soooo cool!! I was not expecting that and it made the plate even more “out of this world” than it was before! It was like a real outer space scene now! Check it out:
Now it was time to eat! The bottom row looked amazing and even though I was planning on eating the sweets first, these looked so good that I changed my mind. I love salmon so my mom let me have both – thanks mom! (Wonder if she thought I would give her both quiches?)
Sorry … I just HAD to try mine! I never had goat’s cheese before. Yum.The middle tray was scones. Look how perfect these scones were! There were plain and white chocolate scones. They came with homemade strawberry preserves, Devonshire clotted cream and honey toffee in a tube you squeezed it out of….they really make having tea here fun at The Ampersand Hotel! I “experimented” making different flavors of my own using all the different things in the test tubes and on the scone plate, like a white chocolate scone with a little cream, a little honey toffee, and some chocolate crunches on top. Why can’t we do these kinds of science experiments in school?And now for The Grand Finale! I started with some sips from a beaker with pink juice in it (Lychee, raspberry and rose flavored) and of course it was delicious, I never tasted a juice like that before. Then I had to figure out what sweet to eat first. It was not easy! I love macarons, lemon cake, and chocolate mint and I literally had all my favorites right there in front of me! I took a bite out of the lemon moon (They call it a “lemon fancy”) and it was THE BEST lemon cake I have ever tasted. My mom also thought so. (The Mom here – it was so moist and fresh! And really cute too….) Next was the sesame macaron. It was really good, of course! I was saving the mint chocolate planet mousse for last and it was, well…. mmmmmmmmmmm. Creamy, minty, chocolatey. This was a really fun, interesting and delicious way to spend the afternoon! It made trying new things exciting. From start to finish, The Science Tea at The Ampersand Hotel is definitely “out of this world” and we are so glad we “unearthed” it!
If you’d like to book the Science Afternoon Tea at the Ampersand (you’ll LOVE it!) you can do so here: