Sunday, 16 July 2017

Coffee Break #35 All Set for Tea in Chipping Norton

Victoria, the sweet tooth behind The Tea Set, has recently opened two tea rooms in the Cotswolds, one in Chipping Norton and the other in Broadway. They are the place to go to enjoy a cuppa and a slice of cake, or in our case, several slices of cake and several cuppas (aka afternoon tea). 

Sarah, my gorgeous blogging friend from Lewis Loves, accompanied me for the afternoon; we made our way to Chipping Norton to eat and gossip - pretty much non-stop - for a couple of hours.

Just so you know, The Tea Set offers much more than cream teas, afternoon teas, cakes, teas and coffees - they also have a full breakfast and lunch menu. But having heard lots about their afternoon teas, our hearts were set on three tiers of deliciousness served with a pot of tea.

Their Cotswolds’ Luxury High Tea is £16 per person and for a few extra quid you can add a glass of bubbles. Their tea room is set off by a huge kitchen dresser (which I want in my home) filled with beautiful crockery and a whole host of cakes and sweet treats.

Offering a choice of tea, I picked the Assam (which is rich and smoky) and Sarah had the afternoon blend (light and refreshing). We also asked for a jug of water to help wash down all the cake we were about to eat! As we sat, our table was laid with the most wonderful mix of cutlery and crockery (check out my gold tea pot in the pics) which made it all the more special. And then…the afternoon teas arrived. We each had three tiers of scrumptiousness! Yes that’s right, one whole three-tiered cake stand all to oneself (no need to share or squabble)! What a treat!

We each had three fingers of sarnies: Egg mayo, salmon & cream cheese, ham (very good ham indeed btw) & red onion marmalade. I really enjoyed the egg and the ham, but I’d have liked to have known what the sarnies were in advance as it’s one of the things I’m rather fussy about when it comes to food. Let me explain…I love ham, hate mustard, eat beef, loathe horseradish, have a thing for cheese, don’t like pickle, partial to cream cheese, but don’t do salmon. Had I been given the choice, I’d have gone for a cream cheese & cucumber instead of the salmon, but fear not, with two other tiers left to eat, I didn’t go hungry.

Google tells me there isn’t an official order to afternoon tea, but for me, it’s always scones after the sarnies, so we then slathered our fruit scones with strawberry jam followed by cream. I don’t enter into the argument about the whole Cornish or Devon thing, because for me it’s about the consistency of the jam. If it’s a jam you need to spread, it goes on the bottom followed by a dollop of clotted cream. If it’s a jam you can spoon on, then the clotted cream goes on first followed by a dollop (or three) of jam. And that’s that.

Scone devoured, we then moved onto the final tier to work our way through a fabulous selection of cakes and sweet treats. We had a lemon posset, a slice of rocky road, a chocolate cupcake topped with the softest swirl of buttercream, a slice of millionaire’s shortbread and a macaron filled with passionfruit curd. I’m not the world’s biggest fan of macarons (they are over-rated in my opinion), but these were spot on. If I could award each tier points, then this one would get top marks for sure. It was great to have so much choice and an array of flavours, colours and textures. Too many afternoon teas have a rather beige offering of cakes and sweets which is not what you want after sarnies (beige) and scones (beige). Well done to The Tea Set – you nailed this one.

What do you think about the whole jam-or-cream-first debate? Or do you think the same as me?


  1. Aww so envious of your afternoon tea – it sounds and looks lovely. It’s made me crave a cuppa and slice of cake for sure. Thanks for sharing, it was interesting to hear about! :-) xx

    Helen | Helen’s Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

  2. Looks like a must visit when we have guests.