Friday 2 August 2013

Chocolate Afternoon Tea At The London Hilton Park Lane - Review

A Hen Do involving Afternoon Tea.. now that's my kind of Hen Do and of course I said yes immediately when the invitation came.

At the end of June, 20 of us made our way to the Podium Restaurant at the London Hilton Park Lane Mayfair to experience 'Confessions of a Chocoholic' Chocolate Afternoon Tea. I was really looking forward to it and also apprehensive. I like chocolate but would it prove to be too much?

As it was a special occasion we opted to add a glass of Champagne to the tea.

A little while after we had sat down a waiter approached us with a wooden presentation box, flipped it open and invited us to choose a tea to accompany our afternoon tea. The box had six little pots of loose tea leaves in that we could smell before ordering. 

I opted for the 'house tea' - The Hilton Afternoon Tea Blend described as "A special blend designed for your enjoyment as a perfect tea for our Chocolate Afternoon Tea. A classic, light and elegant blend of Darjeeling with a hint of smoky Lapsang and a touch of Oolong formosa" I wanted something light and delicate and from the description this fitted the bill perfectly. I would say that it was a bit more smoky than just a hint which a few of the others in the group who had chosen it were not keen on. I was a bit disappointed with the lack of choice of teas and since coming home and looking at the website I notice that the tea selection on the menu is a fair bit larger than the 6 that were on offer to us. I wonder if this is because we were in a big group? 

We were brought individual tea pots with our choice of tea to the table.


The sandwiches were presented as open sandwiches. Personally I loved this as I don't want to bulk up on bread and it was a different and modern touch to the usual finger sandwiches that are provided when having Afternoon Tea.

I had the full selection of sandwiches on offer - see picture below. 

Forman’s smoked salmon & horseradish
Honey roast ham & Pommery mustard
Prawn mayonnaise & baby gem lettuce
Cucumber, cream cheese & chives
Egg & cress

I have to praise the staff for being very accommodating as they did allow people in our group to tailor their choice of sandwiches. I am not a huge fan of egg and cress (dull) but hadn't asked for any changes to my menu so I swapped it for an extra prawn sandwich with another person in our group.

The sandwiches were very tasty indeed and I would have liked more had we been offered them, however by the end of the afternoon tea I can see why more were not on offer... I was very, very full!!

Some of the group opted for the delicious looking vegetarian platter option - a great selection in my opinion, although of course it includes the egg and cress.

Asparagus, Parmesan cheese & balsamic vinegar
Cucumber, cream cheese & chives
Egg & cress
Tomato, mozzarella & pesto
Emmental cheese, grapes & walnut

After the sandwiches we were brought the scones and cakes and as they came to our table - there was a collective 'wow' A 3 tier stand with such pretties, it did feel a little Alice in Wonderland. We were given a stand between 2 people.

The scones - 

Freshly baked chocolate chip
Plain & raisin scones
Praline chocolate spread
Clotted cream & strawberry jam

The scones were served perfectly warm and the chocolate chip scones with praline chocolate spread on top of them were simply divine. Yum! I don't think we were offered plain scones but I was perfectly happy with the choice. 

The pastries - 

Sacher Torte with gold leaf
Raspberry & elderflower cupcake
Red velvet cupcake

The entire sweet selection was gorgeous and moreish. Of the pastries I particularly loved the Sacher Torte.

The miniature fancies 

White chocolate and cherry cheesecake & red velvet and orange tuile
Pistachio macaroon & Manjari chocolate filling
Iced shortbread butterfly & orange and chocolate profitorole 
Lemon and raspberry marshmallow cone - inside the pot appeared to be a base of sugar and pink rice balls
Meringue lolly

All served on a plate of thick edible chocolate..double yum!!

Such lovely and tempting sweets don't you agree?

This was such a fabulous menu and not overly chocolatey. I enjoyed it all.

Final thoughts 

The chocolate afternoon tea is ideal for a relaxed and fun afternoon tea with the girls in an unpretentious and modern setting. The Podium Restaurant Bar is also set up for a quick coffee, breakfast, lunch or dinner so it is not going to be refined or traditional in its setting or service. The service was very much hands off and a little slow. I think the main reason was that there was mainly just one person attending to us most of the time. 

Afternoon Tea is served daily: 12 noon - 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and from 2-6 p.m. Monday – Friday and is priced at £29.50 per person, or £37.50 including a glass of Champagne


  1. That loos so yummy- I bet you were very full after! I would have taken everything I didn't finish with me to eat later! What a lovely hen do! :) x

  2. This looks amazing! Definitely want to treat my mum to this next time I am in the UK

    Stacey xx

  3. This sounds amazing. Everything look so yummy! :)



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