Tea Time

Pre-London I identified almost exclusively as a coffee girl. I lived for 2 pump/no whip iced cinnamon dolce lattes (I'm aware this is the ultimate white girl order), I couldn't start my day without at least one cup of joe and couldn't make it through without another. I had never met a coffee I didn't like: black, iced or in latte form. Yet as I acclimated to the London culture and fell hard for my new British home, I started to come around. Sure, daily stops to Caffè Nero were still essential, but my affection for the afternoon tea tradition grew.

I have some of the sweetest memories set in London tea rooms, whether it being the classic experience of Harrods or something simpler like a family owned spot in Hampstead. Not only did afternoon tea feel like an authentic piece of English culture, but it was always a much-needed breather, an uninterrupted hour to sit, sip, nibble and chat. I'm most certainly still a coffee girl, but no longer so exclusive. I obviously function solely on caffein.

Tea favorites: Georgian blend from Harrods, standard English Breakfast Tea, Green tea.


Being that its such a part of English culture, there are a million and one tea rooms around the city, but I can't imagine a place feeling more iconic than Harrods. (I wrote all about it here: http://undermegsumbrella.blogspot.com/2016/02/pinkies-up-for-20-years.html) The red velvet booths and dangling chandeliers drip with elegance and I couldn't help but feel sophisticated by association (even if the reality is I'm an unsophisticated clumsy mess). My gluten-free options were on par with my parents gluten-filled ones and the tea just kept on coming by request. I had five cups (of course).

The Reubens at the Palace

The Reubens at the Palace earns extra brownie points for its proximity to the Palace itself. Being that its just across from Buckingham Palace it was the perfect locale for an authentic English afternoon. Along with some out-of-town visitors, we stopped by old Queenie's residence and then skipped across the street for some crumpets (not literally, but you get the picture OK).


As one of the most Instagrammed spots in London, Sketch is worth the pictures alone. Located just off Regent's Street in Mayfair, this 18th century townhouse tea room is uniquely decked. Each room is themed differently than the next, but all housing the same classic treats and teas. While my other two favorites are very classic, Sketch is without a doubt the cool kid of the tea world.

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