The best afternoon tea in Edinburgh
The 19th century ritual of afternoon tea has had a modern day revival and it seems we now can’t get enough of those delicate savouries, dainty scones and delectable sweet fancies. Sandwiched in between lunch and dinner, afternoon tea is an excuse for sheer indulgence (and by ‘sandwiched’ we mean ‘light and fluffy bread, crusts cut off, lashings of fillings, finger sandwiched’).
So without further ado, here are some of the best places to head for afternoon tea in Edinburgh...
With views across Festival Square to the iconic Edinburgh Castle, afternoon tea at One Square is the perfect way to spend an indulgent afternoon. The summertime menu, served with a glass of Rocco Rose or Brut, features the freshest seasonal ingredients and is best enjoyed al fresco on the outdoor terrace. The picnic afternoon tea is a summertime delight including smoked salmon and cucumber finger sandwiches, Ayrshire pork and Braeburn apple sausage rolls and watermelon lollipops.
£32 per person.
One Square, 1 Festival Sq, Edinburgh, EH3 9SR, Tel: 0131 221 6422, onesquareedinburgh.co.uk/en/picnic-tea
Giving the traditional afternoon tea a thoroughly modern twist, The Printing Press Bar & Kitchen offers Uig Lodge smoked salmon sandwiches, scones heaped with raspberry jam and clotted cream, and the ultimate sweet-toothed finale of cakes, tarts and buns, accompanied by selected tea, coffee or Champagne. They even do a special children's afternoon tea for the little ones.
£19.75 per person or £25 with Champagne.
The Printing Press Bar & Kitchen, 21-25 George St, Edinburgh, EH2 2PB,
Tel: 0131 240 7177, www.printingpressedinburgh.co.uk
This contemporary boutique hotel offers three afternoon tea options - Tigerlily Tea, Tiny Tea and Gentleman's Tea. Highlights include the moreish smoked Scottish salmon and
cream cheese on rye bread finger sandwiches and the devilishly good salted caramel donuts.
£25 per person or £30 with Veuve Clicquot Champagne.
Tigerlily, 125 George St, Edinburgh, EH2 4JN, Tel: 0131 225 5005, www.tigerlilyedinburgh.co.uk
Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh - The Caledonian
Channeling old school glamour, this West End luxury spot offers afternoon tea in the heart of the capital. Opt for the exclusive Chocolate Afternoon Tea and sample special treats such as the white chocolate and raspberry lollipop, paired with a huge range of fine loose leaf teas and herbal infusions.
£25 per person for Chocolate Afternoon Tea or £35 with a glass of Champagne.
The Caledonian, Princes St, Edinburgh, EH1 2AB, Tel: 0131 222 8888, www.waldorfastoriaedinburgh.com
Palm Court at The Balmoral
Experience the award-winning Balmoral afternoon tea under the shadow of a spectacular glass chandelier in Palm Court. Choose from 20 loose leaf teas or add a glass of Bollinger Champagne and unwind in style.
£35 per person.
The Balmoral Hotel, 1 Princes St, Edinburgh, EH2 2EQ, Tel: 0131 556 2414,
Served in the gothic tea house or by the log fire, afternoon tea oozes atmosphere and luxury at Prestonfield House. Upgrade to the Champagne option for a glass of Billecart Salmon Champagne to compliment the sumptuous sandwiches and cakes.
£25 per person or £35 with Champagne.
Prestonfield House, Priestfield Rd, Edinburgh, EH16 5UT, Tel: 0131 225 7800, www.prestonfield.com
Colonnades at the Signet Library
When it comes to afternoon tea, the team at Colonnades at the Signet Library set the bar spectacularly high. Expect five star dainty sandwiches, pastries fit for royalty, and scones served with only the most lip-smackingly sweet jam and lashings of clotted creamy goodness. Not only do the delicacies hit the spot, the silver tiered cake stands and crisp linen add to the overall sense of occasion.
£30 per person.
Colonnades at the Signet Library, Parliament Sq, Edinburgh, EH1 1RF, Tel: 0131 226 1064, www.thesignetlibrary.co.uk/colonnades
If you’re fancying an escape from the bustling city centre it’s well worth making the trip down to The Shore in Leith, especially for the indulgent afternoon tea at Malmaison. The tea at the Mal comes with miniature bagels, sliders, and a seasonal fruit shake, alongside your classic scones and specialty teas, of course. There’s also the option to add your cocktail of choice or why not go all out with a glass of prosecco or Champagne? We know what we’d do…
£19.95 per person or £27 with a cocktail or Champagne.
1 Tower Pl, EH6 7BZ, Tel: 0131 285 1478, malmaison.com
The Georgian Tea Room at The Dome is the perfect setting to enjoy a traditional Champagne afternoon tea. Think ornately decorated interiors, crisp white linen and fine bone china teacups – it ticks all the boxes if you’re looking for a truly decadent experience. Their delicate finger sandwiches, scones and sweet pastries are perfectly paired with a selection of traditional teas and herbal infusions.
£16.50 per person or £23.50 with a glass of Champagne.
The Dome, 14 George St, Edinburgh, EH2 2PF, Tel: 0131 624 8624, www.thedomeedinburgh.com
Now with three thriving bakehouses to it's name, Mimi's has established itself as the go-to place for a quirky take on the traditional afternoon tea. The innovative flavours, generous portions and retro surroundings tick all the boxes.
£16.50 per person or from £23.50 with Champagne.
Mimi’s Bakehouse Leith, 63 Shore, Edinburgh, EH6 6RA
Mimi’s Bakehouse Corstorphine, 277 St John's Rd, Edinburgh, EH12 7XD
Mimi’s Mini Bakehouse Old Town, 250 Canongate, Edinburgh, EH8 8AA