Afternoon Tea has become one of the most popular dining trends of recent times – something that was once denoted as an elderly vocation has now become part and parcel of contemporary British dining. This revamped version of a British classic has been copy and pasted into every high-end bar, hotel and restaurant, with apps such as Groupon and Wowcher saturated by money off deals for this newly sought after experience.
My social media channels have of late become overrun with family and friends enjoying Afternoon Tea at various venues up and down the country, and although this new concept didn’t originally garner my attention, it seemed only fair that I try it out for myself before passing judgement.
But, after my recent visit to Manchester’s Malmaison restaurant, Chez Mal, with my mum and sister in tow, I have become a self-confessed Afternoon Tea aficionado.
When we arrived we were each given our own tea-pot which is refilled as required, and a wide selection of Taylor’s tea’s to choose from, as well as the option to add a glass of champagne or an Afternoon Tea inspired cocktail – or three…I tried the Patron Espresso Martini and it was perfect.
The Afternoon Tea includes:
fruit scone, hot smoked salmon & crème fraîche wrap, chipotle chicken & avocado wrap, mini burger, strawberry & vanilla pavlova, salted chocolate brownie, lemon & polenta cake, peach & Amaretto cream and frozen summer berry smoothie
Now, to say my mum is a fussy eater would be the understatement of the year – so we requested a few changes to the menu on her part, which the Malmaison were more than happy to alter for us. Myself and my sister stayed true to what was on the menu, however my mum opted to change her wraps to sandwiches, while also passing on the hot smoked salmon.
So if there is something on the menu that you don’t particularly like the sound of, Malmaison will always try to accommodate those needs – which is something not all venue’s offer with a set menu. Also, as my sister is pregnant the waitress suggested some virgin cocktails for her to try, which she really enjoyed.
Amendments aside, all three of us thoroughly enjoyed our Afternoon Tea experience, the hot smoked salmon, and chipotle chicken wraps were beautiful, and offered something different to the experience which is more commonly served as sandwiches at other venues – and the mini burger tasted lovely and created a good balance between hot and cold foods.
The desserts, as you can see from the photos were beautifully presented – and were just as pleasing visually as they were tasty. The salted chocolate brownie was possibly my favourite of all the desserts, but I enjoyed each and every one of them, and ending with the frozen summer berry smoothie leaves you feeling refreshed.
The scones were freshly baked and remained warm throughout the meal, as we opted to save these for last – and after some debate about what goes first, the jam or the cream, we all really enjoyed them. I would highly recommend, whether you’re an afternoon tea pro or new to the game like me, to head to the Malmaison for Afternoon Tea – we had a perfect Sunday afternoon, the service was second to non, and the Chez Mal is a lovely, welcoming venue.
A unique take on a highly sought after dining experience that will leave you extremely satisfied.
1 Gore Street
***I was an invited guest at the restaurant, for the purposes of a honest review, all opinions expressed are my own***