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Indigo Afternoon Tea - One
Indigo Restaurant at One Aldwych Hotel is the ideal spot
for a spot of tea. Its unique location allows for the essential “people
watching” without the disadvantages of traffic fumes and noise, and
with the added benefit of those aforementioned people being kept at a
healthy distance. You’ll have a good view of the moving London
landscape from your cosy eyrie.
Indigo restaurant now offers the celebrated British afternoon tea with
a delicious twist on the much-loved experience.
has tweaked the classic dainties –
both sweet and savoury – to present a contemporary version of the
typical afternoon tea. Nothing too outlandish or shocking to refined
sensibilities, just changes to offer a lighter although equally
This restaurant is a favourite of mine. In fact the hotel with both
Indigo and Axis restaurants is a haven of understated good taste and a
refuge from the bustle of city life. We ordered Assam and Darjeeling
teas and settled back. I was expecting something charming and different
and that’s what I got.
The three-tier stand is traditional and there were sandwiches. Roast
beef, pink and tempting and spiked with horseradish, in my opinion the
essential condiment, is served on caramelised onion bread. Smoked
salmon is a must and here it has a spread of cream cheese on onion
bread. Cucumber and cream cheese is matched with caraway bread to make
one feel elegant and a bit Victorian (although they might have missed
out on the cream cheese, and the bread would doubtless have remained
Sandwiches constitute the majority of that lower layer but Indigo has
added some savouries and they are miniature versions of the dishes that
were so popular as part of a High Tea a century or so ago. The hearty
Scotch Egg is now made with a quail egg, and the Welsh Rarebit is a
crunchy crouton topped with the cheesy mix.
The usual route to teatime satisfaction lies in starting at the bottom
with the sandwiches and working up. I would counsel that you should
have the ground floor platter first and then pass swiftly to the third.
The Eton Mess is presented in a small glass and will captivate anyone
with a passion for sweet decadence. Dive in, as this concoction is best
Traditional warm Scottish drop-scones served with berry compote and
clotted cream also grace that top deck. They replace the notoriously
fickle regular scones. They are light and delicate and a worthy
addition to the plate. But cakes are perhaps the most eagerly
anticipated of the collection and they grace the middle level of the
The Bitter Chocolate Tart has a truly adult and sophisticated taste. It
might look a small slice but it’s rich; and there is pink and yellow
checker-board Battenberg to follow. This really will evoke memories of
childhood, although my childhood was punctuated with Battenberg from a
box, a pale imitation of this Indigo delight. But there is more to come
in the guise of carrot cake. A great example here with evidence of both
nuts and carrots, and aromatic with warming spices. A substantial slice.
Afternoon tea at Indigo is a new enterprise. It’s only been available
for a few weeks but it’s already popular. There was a pre-wedding
celebration party, the girls wearing flowery dresses to complement the
pastel teatime display. Another table held a family of three
generations, grandparents sipping champagne while baby in high-chair
tucked into a finger of sandwich and squidgy fist or two of cake.
Contentment and joy reigned. I’ll return for another tranquil Saturday
afternoon and I am sure the others will as well.
Afternoon tea must be booked in
£26.50 per person
£35.00 per person including a glass of Louis Roederer Champagne
Indigo Restaurant - One Aldwych
1 Aldwych, London WC2B 4RH
Tel: 020 7300 0400
Fax: 020 7300 0401