Thursday 22 January 2015

Afternoon Tea at the Cedar Court Grand, York

You may remember towards the end of last year I went to a Mad Hatter's Afternoon Tea with a group of Yorkshire bloggers.  We didn't enjoy our experience and when we told the Hotel about our disappointment they very kindly invited us back to try a complimentary "Grand Afternoon Tea".

Super impressed with the fantastic level of customer service we all met in York last weekend and headed back to give the Cedar Court Grand another visit.

Afternoon Tea is served in a beautiful room overlooking the historic city walls of York.  I was pretty jealous of some of the young couples who had prime position window seats so if I were ever to go back I'm definitely requesting my tea with a view.

As there were 7 of us, we were never going to all fit round a window so instead we were sat at a nice big table with plenty of room.   The atmosphere was very peaceful, the silence only broken by the odd spoon stirring tea.  I'm not sure it remained quite as serene for the rest of the afternoon when we arrived, giddy at the promise of delicious food.

Picture c/o the lovely Simone

The Grand offers a choice of 5 afternoon teas including a Champagne Afternoon Tea, Gin and Tonic  Afternoon Tea and, as a lovely little touch, a Children's Afternoon Tea.

Sometimes I'm quite tempted to add something sparkly to my afternoon tea but on this occasion I stuck to the standard "Grand Afternoon Tea".

We were given a big choice of teas to choose from which I enjoyed reading through but as usual ordered "English Breakfast". Maybe one day I will be brave and try a different tea - watch this space!   We were each presented with a beautiful silver tea pot.  It was one of the more fancier tea pots I've had for an afternoon tea and I was so taken with mine I wish I could have brought it home with me.

Shortly after, big plates of sandwiches arrived.   I liked that they were brought out separately to the cakes, it meant there was more room on the table and I wasn't distracted by wanting to eat sweet things. 

We had five different fillings - Cucumber and Dill, Egg Mayonnaise, Roast Beef with Black Pepper Mayonnaise, Smoked Salmon with Soft Cheese and lastly Ham and  English Mustard.  The bread was fresh and the fillings were really tasty.   My highlight was the Black Pepper Mayonnaise that was served with the Beef, although I did find the meat a little tough.

After we'd polished off all the sandwiches and declined the very generous offer of more we were eager for the arrival of the cakes.

They took a little while to appear as the Chef was carefully preparing me my very own nut free selection.  The Hotel dealt with my nut allergy really well, asking me questions about what I could eat and keeping my cakes separate to everyone else.

This meant that I got my very own little plate of cakes, which I actually felt pretty smug about.  No sharing required - these treats were all for me!  I was quite tempted to dig into them with my knife and fork but then decided that might not be too ladylike.

The cake stands looked fantastic.  I always like a well presented afternoon tea with plenty to look at and this one did not disappoint with fun shapes and lots of variety.

Abiding by the afternoon tea rules we tucked into the scones first.  I always find scones to be very hit and miss in an afternoon tea but I'm very happy to say that these were spot on.  We had two each and they were the perfect size to ensure we felt spoilt but without feeling overly full.  My knife cut through my scone with ease to reveal a perfectly soft and crumbly centre. 
The cream was so thick it was pretty hard to get out of the pot but I just saw this as a fun challenge and thought maybe battling with jam and cream could be seen as some kind of exercise to justify my cake consumption!
The scones didn't last long which was fine by me as it meant it was time to tackle the cakes.

I was excited to get started as there were so many different flavours.  I started with the ice-cream cone - a rhubarb meringue sitting on top of a cone filled with custard cream.  I loved it, it was really fun and tasted lovely.

This was swiftly followed by a lemon cupcake which I wasn't overly impressed with.  It was very dry and the only lemon flavour came from a blob of lemon curd that held the vanilla cream to the sponge - very disappointing.

My main nut replacement cake was some squares of black treacle sponge which I really enjoyed.    I was very glad for the trade as the others had "Dark Chocolate Delice" which they said was very rich and sickly sweet.

My last pick from the stand was the Banoffee Pot.  The toffee was so sweet and thick - absolutely delicious but definitely finished me off.

It's not often that a cake stand beats me but this one defeated me and there were cakes left on my plate!  

The Grand Afternoon Tea costs £22.50 per person and is ideal for someone who loves sugary treats.  



  1. This looks amazing! Thanks for making me hungry once again haha!

    Kay xx

  2. It looks just how afternoon tea should be! I love the look of the ice cream cone and the banoffee pot :)
    Lots of love,

    SilverSpoon London

  3. This looks amazing! I like the sound of the black pepper mayonnaise, and the icecream cone is so unique.

  4. Love that ice cream!! LOVE IT ALL! Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy your last experience, sounds like this one was much better though. It's got to be if you can't finish all your cakes!

  5. This looks absolutely AMAZING! I am now officially starving and need afternoon tea immediately haha ;p Love the little ice cream cones and the scones like delicious!

    Hannah xx

  6. I've not been for afternoon tea before but this looks amazing!! Everything looks so cute & fancy :-) I'm with you on the teapot front. Ha :-) Love it!

  7. Sarah was telling me about your afternoon tea! I was very jealous! And I love the new look Chloe (sorry if I am super late on this - had laptop problems and the bloglovin app on my phone doesn't show designs!).

    Stephie from Tea in your Twenties xx


  8. That is really a kind and professional thing to do, to offer a "do-over" - they clearly care about customer satisfaction! It looks like such a fun and delicious get together, I'm so glad you enjoyed it this time x

    Miho @ Wander to Wonder

  9. Ah this looks amazing!! I do love a great afternoon tea, the scones are definitely my fave x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

  10. Aren't blogger gatherings great?! Its so nice snapping pictures of food without having to explain why or feel judged, haha!

    The Awkward Blog

  11. That looks amazing. I paid the same for afternoon tea down here and we got hardly anything!x

  12. I am so jealous of you all getting to go to this, I love afternoon tea and it will be on my list of places to go! Looks gorgeous, and I love the sandwich selection :-)

    Rachel x
    The Inelegant Wench

  13. This looks so good! That's such good service that they invited you back because you were unsatisfied. I haven't been to try afternoon tea yet but it's something my friends and I want to meet up and do. The food looks delicious and I like the fact there's a decent selection too. Just found your blog through Twitter today, so will be following to keep up with your posts! - Tasha

  14. As you know I absolutely love afternoon tea and like you it has to be a feast for the eyes and presented well. This looks wonderful. I would have started with the ice cream cone too and glad that the rhubarb combination was a good one Lucy x

  15. It was great to see you again! We should all make it a regular thing! x

  16. Oh my gosh, those cakes look amazing!!! Those ice-cream cones!!

    C x
    Lux Life


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