Tag Archives: scones

Coffee Break: The Mock Turtle

Contrary to the name The Mock Turtle has nothing to do with turtles but everything to do with the best tea and scones that Brighton has to offer.

Every time we come to Brighton we always have an afternoon tea session at The Mock Turtle. It is always heaving with people inside and out and for good reason too. With scones the size of my head, cream and jam as sweet as nectar (in my head I think nectar is really sweet) and tea as heavenly as something you can only get in heaven, The Mock Turtle is the place for high tea whether you are a tea person or not.

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This high tea experience is not pretentious at all which is the general connotation people get whenever it is mentioned. It is a very cool and chilled out experience and to be fair everything in Brighton has that similar laid back feel to it.

The interior is rather quant with lots of ‘old skool’ fine china on the walls, the ones with the blue paint work that you see on antiques road show. As you enter there is a table with handmade cakes on cake stands, displayed in a similar fashion to a church fair. The clientele is so eclectic; teenagers, the elderly, young professions, children and mature adults all smiling and enjoying a cup of tea with a scone.

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The scones are the biggest we have ever seen and you can choose from a range of different one from plain to fruit filled. We always go for a platter of plain scones, clotted cream, strawberry jam and english breakfast tea. The scones are so filling that we can never muster dinner after it (but we do as we try and find a good gastro pub to dine in on the way back into London).

It’s an incredible experience this high tea business and I don’t think we will ever not pay a visit to The Mock Turtle when we are in Brighton. Make sure you get your fill of scones the next time you visit Brighton, maybe we will bump into you there.

The Mock Turtle Tea Room
4 Pool Valley, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 1NJ

Coffee Break: Newens The Original Maids of Honor

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Elena and I love to have days off together as we love to chill and do the most patriotic things such as driving down to the tinniest villages in hope to find the best gastro pubs, visiting Royal gardens in the hopes to find a tea shop or two and this Friday afternoon was much of the same. We love Kew Gardens and when ever we visit we always see this quaint looking bakery outside, after a made session of googling we discovered that it was in fact an old tea room.

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Newens The Original Maid of Honor (what a mouthful) is a traditional tea room full of nick knacks, beams and lots of cladding. To our surprise it wasn’t full of tourists as we had assumed but locals who clearly come here on a regular basis which really added to the charm of this place.

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Excited to be having high tea we were even more shocked that we were paying a mere £14.99 per person for an array of sandwiches, scones and cake with a pot of earl grey tea. We got to pick the cakes we wanted from the large selection they had to offer. We were intrigued to see that this was also a fully functioning bakery from which deliveries were being made throughout the day in their 1930’s van.

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The tea was delightful and well it was earl grey so no frills. We started with the bottom tier of our stand with the sandwiches. The sandwiches were pre-made and refrigerated which was a tad disappointing as the bread had developed a crunch and the butter within them was a tad cold and hard. They were very cute to look at, bite sized, crusts removed and an assortment of classic fillings such as: salmon, cheese, ham and cucumber. Not the biggest fan of sandwiches but when in Rome and all.

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The second tier was right up our street. Scones! We had plain scones with sugar dusting and fruit scones served will clotted cream and jam. We have tried a lot of scones in or time and have always known them to be slightly firm however, these scones were super soft and melted in your mouth. Delicious.

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Once we got to the last tier of cakes we were stuffed but ploughed on and dived into our chocolate tart which was dense and moist and the uber fluffy coffee cream bun.

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The experience of a high tea here isn’t at all trendy or the ‘kitch’ thing to do as you may assume with the current trend of high tea at the Ritz or some other posh hotel. To have high tea at Newens is a chance to live life in the foot steps of those who have the privilege of living in Kew, a chance to listen to the old stories of the customers sharing anecdotes of their years and a chance to take a breath and chill and reflect on your day away from our cosmopolitan lifestyle. So much so we ended up spending 4-5 hours sat there just having a good old natter.

Newens The Original Maid of Honor will be our regular stop whenever we come to Kew Garden because of the sense of belonging and relaxation it gives us which goes hand in hand with a stroll around Kew.

Newens The Original Maid of Honor
288 Kew Road, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3DU
http://www.theoriginalmaidsofhonour.co.uk