The ritual of fine afternoon tea has a rich history that dates back to the 19th century in Britain. It is believed to have been popularised by Anna, the Duchess of Bedford, who experienced a "sinking feeling" and desired a light meal between lunch and dinner. She began inviting friends to join her for tea and small snacks, giving birth to the tradition of afternoon tea.
Initially, it was an elite practice among the upper class, but it quickly spread across the social classes. Afternoon tea became an opportunity for people to socialise, indulge in delicate pastries, sandwiches, and scones, all accompanied by a steaming cup of tea. Over time, it became an iconic symbol of British culture, with tea rooms and hotels offering elaborate afternoon tea experiences.
Today, afternoon tea continues to be cherished, preserving its elegance and charm while serving as a delightful occasion to unwind and savour the pleasures of a leisurely afternoon. Here's our selection of the finest afternoon tea spreads, on land and at sea!