Yesterday the Tearoom family got dolled up and headed to the five star hotel and spa that is Penny Hill Park in Bagshot, Surrey, for some fancy shmancy afternoon tea.
Far from being just a country house hotel, the vast Penny Hill Park has it all with its award winning dining, kitchen garden, luxury spa and beautiful grounds, including golf course. It makes a pretty good wedding venue and is even home to the England Rugby Training Facility and rugby pitch. Best of all they have their own bakery where the team create speciality breads and the amazing patisserie that we scoffed from our beautifully stacked cake stands. You can even watch the magic happen through the bakery viewing window, or take home a ‘Penny Hill Loaf’ of your choice if you’re a hotel guest.
We were served up a wonderfully Wimbledon inspired afternoon tea in the hotel’s decadent Ascot bar. With sandwiches and scones, fluffy madeleines, lemon meringue tarts with tennis racket and ball, Pimms Jelly and curd filled choux pastries, we truly indulged. There were mini versions for the younglings with chocolate spread sandwiches and pretty macarons. The patisserie was light and flavoursome without that sickly sweet ‘blurgh’ feeling afterwards.
The tea we chose, from a large menu of specialist loose leaf options, was the Cornish Tregothnan Afternoon Tea, blended exclusively for the hotel and recommended by the waiter. Thirst quenchingly good.
Service was attentive and kind without making you squirm and the weekend atmosphere was busy and chatty while the harpist (seriously) played on.
Much to Ma Tearooms delight there was even a screening room showing the Wimbledon final so a fine old time was had by all.
The afternoon tea here is by no means cheap, especially if you decide to “treat yourself like ‘Royalty'” and upgrade to a glass of English sparkling wine. This great English tradition however, is very much a special occasion, and Penny Hill Park certainly makes it feel that way.