Hotel Café Royal, the luxury five-star hotel built around London's iconic Belle-Epoque Café Royal Grill Room, now re-named the Oscar Wilde Bar, will unveil a brand-new “London Royal Tea” in September 2015, served in the very same room where the likes of Oscar Wilde, Virginia Woolf, Rudyard Kipling, Winston Churchill and the Duke of Windsor once dined.
The afternoon tea experience begins with Hotel Café Royal's designated toastmaster ringing a bell from the historic entrance on Regent Street, to signal the beginning and end of afternoon tea service. Dating back to the 1800s, this tradition evokes the spirit of the “muffin men,” who would hawk their wares on the streets of London and ring a bell when the muffins were ready, until a law was passed prohibiting the activity in 1839 – a law that still stands today.  Upon arrival in the gilded setting of the Oscar Wilde Bar, guests are given a brief history of the traditions surrounding afternoon tea in Britain and a piece of news from Café Royal's legendary past, to celebrate the legacy of this London landmark.
For the new London Royal Tea, the chefs at Hotel Café Royal have crafted their own culinary interpretations of the traditional afternoon tea menu of sandwiches, scones, delicacies, cakes and savories, including:
  • The customary Savory Muffin with Goat Cheese and Tomato
  • A selection of traditional tea sandwiches with a twist, including: Cucumber, Cream Cheese and Beet; Prawn Brigade with Spices and London Honey; and Smoked Wilde Salmon, Quail Egg and Watercress.
  • A palate cleanser of hibiscus iced tea and vanilla biscuits
  • Traditional Battenberg Cake – originally created to celebrate the royal wedding in 1884 of Prince Louis of Battenberg and Queen Victoria's granddaughter
  • Underground Macarons – inspired by the icon of the London Underground
  • Pearly King and Queen Opera cake
  • Victoria Sponge cake
  • Raspberry Regent – specially created for the London Royal Tea and inspired by the hotel's iconic Dome Penthouse
  • Golden Raisin and Plain Scones with Clotted Cream and Baylands Strawberry Preserve
  • A selection of cakes, including Lemon Drizzle, Hazelnut Tin and Traditional Fruit Cake
A choice of custom-blended teas from the Canton Tea company will be on offer, including the Celestine (a blend of Bai Lin Gong Fu Black Tea, Yunnan Black Tea, Organic Vanilla Pod and Cornflower Petals) and the eponymous Oscar (a Lapsang Souchong black tea).  The London Royal Tea will also showcase a menu of Champagnes and sparkling wines, as well as signature Hotel Café Royal cocktails featuring Veuve Clicquot Rich, including: The Ziggy Stardust (a mix of Coconut Noire tea, fresh coconut, gold dust with Rich Champagne) and the Whistler (featuring Lavender Earl Grey tea with Rich Champagne).
The London Royal Tea is priced at £42 (approx. US$65) per person; the Champagne London Royal Tea is priced at £55 (approx. US$85) per person. Both are available daily from
noon to 5pm.
                                                                                          
For reservations, call +44 (0)207 406 3310 or email restaurants@hotelcaferoyal.com. For more information about the Hotel Café Royal and its restaurants, bars and Akasha spa,
visit: www.hotelcaferoyal.com. Follow @hotelcaferoyal on Instagram and Twitter and Hotel Café Royal on Facebook.
ABOUT HOTEL CAFÉ ROYAL:
Located on Regent Street, bridging the elegance of Mayfair and the creativity of Soho, Café Royal has been at the heart of the London “scene” since its original opening in 1865, welcoming a variety of guests from royalty and celebrity to rock stars, models and muses. Combining architectural heritage with contemporary design, Hotel Café Royal features 160 rooms and suites (including seven signature suites), an array of bars and restaurants, high-tech meeting and event spaces, and the Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre spa, fitness and wellness facilities. Hotel Café Royal is the second member of The Set hotels and a proud member of The Leading Hotels of the World.
ABOUT THE SET:
The Set was created to redefine the concept of the luxury hotel for sophisticated, design-literate travelers in the 21st century. Working to create hotels that were not only of the moment but that would define their times and locations, architects and designers of the caliber of Piero Lissoni, David Chipperfield and Jean-Michel Wilmotte have been recruited to deftly rework the DNA of the grand hotel and create spaces that are contemporary in conception, while simultaneously evocative of the style and glamour of the past. Located in existing landmark buildings, each member of The Set is rooted in the history and culture of its location as well as the contemporary needs and desires of its guests. The Set currently comprises: Conservatorium, Amsterdam, Hotel Café Royal, London, and Lutétia, Paris (coming soon). www.thesethotels.com
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