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Stimulate your senses with a diptyque afternoon tea at Hotel Café Royal London

January 13, 2018

Food & Drink | by Baldwin Ho

Afternoon tea just got a sophisticated makeover through diptyque’s iconic wintry fragrances.

Ever since their refurbishment, Hotel Café Royal London has been a firm favourite, with Londoners with their boutique sense of style and sophistication. One of the most awe-inspiring rooms to visit is their Oscar Wilde Bar. It’s the room where the eponymous playwright famously fell in love with Lord Alfred Douglas. David Bowie, retired Ziggy Stardust and countless celebrities like Mike Jagger and the Beatles danced the night away here. The gilded magnificence of this room is one of the best-hidden gems of London; with an abundance of gleaming mirrors, period artwork and shimmering hues of gold.

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Oscar Wilde Bar at Hotel Café Royal

They have recently launched a fantastic afternoon tea in association with leading French perfumer and artist diptyque to bring a multisensory experience for your enjoyment. Hotel Café Royal is already well-known for their afternoon teas having won Best Traditional Afternoon Tea in the 2017 Afternoon Tea Awards and their Executive Pastry Chef, Sarah Barber has also won countless awards.

The afternoon tea delight began with an amuse-bouche of goat’s cheese and pickled apple muffin; the uniqueness being the pickled apple served in a pipette which you inject into the muffin. The tart sweetness of the injection worked supremely well with the richness of the goat’s cheese.

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Tea selection at Hotel Café Royal

Sandwiches were a showcase of the best of British with ingredients like British cucumber, Cotswold chicken, Burford brown eggs and roast Aberdeen Angus beef. They were perfectly petite in size, which made them even more desirable, yet the staff were more than happy to refill any dishes should you desire more.

The scones came suitably warmed with a perfect balance of texture and richness. They offered a plain version and one with raisins and suitably-traditional clotted cream and strawberry jam. Obviously, it was jam before cream for this restaurant reviewer.

The star of the show was the sweet delicacies created in conjunction with diptyque. We tried versions that matched diptyque’s Roses, Vanilla, Violette and Verveine scents. Rose Victoria was constructed with elegant flavours such raspberry and rose jam served on top of a lychee and rose mousse. Lemon Verbena had beautiful citrusy notes with lemon cream and orange crémeux on a sablé Breton base. Violet and Cassis Tart had fragrant, floral notes complete with an edible flower on top, but my favourite was the crunchy Tahitian Vanilla Bar. The strong-tasting Tahitian vanilla sponge was topped with hazelnut praline feuillatine and a Valrhona ‘Opalys’ ganache. Oscar Wilde would have been proud of such indulgences. The delicacies will be updated for the Christmas season.

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diptyque Afternoon Tea at Hotel Café Royal

You can aid your digestion with their fine selection of exclusive blends and teas or continue with a glass of celebratory Laurent-Perrier, N.V. The afternoon tea also includes a beautifully-gift-packaged 70g Baies candle to take away – diptyque’s most popular scent – a combination of Bulgarian roses and blackcurrant leaves.

Book in here.

Read more of Baldwin Ho’s restaurant reviews here.