Afternoon Tea is an indulgent pastime of mine and I’m always amazed at the innovative twists that are put on the traditional afternoon tea, so imagine my excitement when Baglioni Hotel London introduced their partnership with iconic fragrance brand Acqua di Parma and created the Acqua di Parma Afternoon Tea.
Alongside a selection of scones and sandwiches that have an Italian twist, there is also colourful treats inspired by Aqua di Parma’s Colonia fragrance, including citrus fruit from Sicily, lavender, bergamot, verbena and Bulgarian rose.
On arrival we were shown to our seats in an alcove by the window, before being poured a cool glass of Ferrari Maximum Brut (I think every afternoon tea should make champagne a necessity), whilst we looked over the elegant menu, that was not only full of the delicious savoury and sweet delights we were going to be served but also all the teas that were sent to tempt our senses – We chose the Calabrian Bergamot and Mint which was delicately refreshing and the Rose and Lime, fruity, floral and lightly refreshing all at the same time.
The food certainly didn’t disappoint with the homemade rosemary focaccia with bresaola and buffalo mozzarella cheese, being a particular favourite, so much so our lovely waitress brought us extra. An amalgamation of tastes and textures followed in the different sandwiches that included sun dried tomatoes and ricotta cheese, Scottish oak-smoked salmon with fresh cream and chives, Classic egg, fresh rocket salad and mayonnaise and Turkey, with fresh lettuce and mayonnaise.
After devouring our savoury selection, it was time for the sweet treats, all creatively designed to keep with the theme. Classic tiramisu along with floral verbena and lime zest panna cotta with rose coulis were both presented in miniature glasses and a dessert lovers heaven. The Sicilian cannoli with candied orange, crunched perfectly and the Lavender meringue and bergamot cream just melted in the mouth. The Colonia lemon tart, had a slight sharpness, which was complimented with the sweet pastry and the pistachio tuiles just faultless, all served alongside what else but violets of Parma and edible flowers.
Freshly baked warm scones followed, accompanied with not your usual clotted cream and strawberry jam, but with of course Italy’s famous Nutella chocolate spread, Sicilian blood orange jam and English clotted cream. These were truly scrumptious and I am assured no calories were counted when I indulged in a combination of chocolate spread and clotted cream!
This has got to be one of my favourite afternoon teas to date, from the exquisite presentation, quirky extras and delicious taste – An elegant experience made all the more special by the piano being played in the background, the chic luxurious surroundings (think 1920’s glamour), champagne and a gift bag that includes Colonia perfume samples.