Champagne High Tea at The Magdelen Chapter

I have been desperate to experience a "high tea" for ages, a proper British, civilised 'ladies that lunch' afternoon tea. I wanted to pretend to be a lady and quaff champagne whilst nibbling on sandwiches and cake, for just one day.  Finally the Magdelen Chapter in Exeter, winners of Food & Travel magazine's "Best City Hotel 2013", gave me the chance to experience this along with Nick's Mum, Izzy.

The last time I set foot in this building it was the West of England Eye Hospital. It has now been turned into a "contemporary wonderland" in the heart of Exeter. When we arrived at the grand looking building we were greeted buy the scent and warmth of an open log fire. We were shown to the lounge area, filled with armchairs and adorned with a Hugo Dalton wall painting, it felt really cosy, and the sun was shining outside. The lounge opens out onto a terrace and garden, it was a great setting. We ordered a champagne afternoon tea for 2. The champagne was delicious, but left me wanting more than one glass!  The afternoon tea was presented beautifully, and was everything I had imagined.  Delicate little finger sandwiches, cakes, and freshly baked scones, jam and cream- heaven.

The crust-less finger sandwich were smoked salmon, poached ham and mustard, cucumber, cream cheese and chive.  They were delicious, soft bread with just the right amount of filling.  The ham was thickly sliced and delicious. I quickly moved on to the scones, which were still warm!  Lovely and crisp on the outside and fluffy in the middle, they were out of this world! The cakes served were butterscotch macarons, passion fruit tart, chocolate truffle rolled in pistachio and a choux bun. The chocolate truffle was so rich and perfectly complimented by a cherry.  The macaroon had a delicious butterscotch filling and was so fresh. The choux bun had a lovely creamy filling, but the absolute winner for both of us was the passion fruit tart. The pastry was made to perfection, crispy and light. The passion fruit filling was so sweet, but so tangy and was so delicious with the meringue topping. I was just upset that it was only a mouth sized bit, I would have loved a whole big slice of it!

The whole afternoon tea was amazing, I am literally obsessed! I want to go there for every occasion that I can come up with, for example, any day ending in the letter y! A great setting for a great afternoon, and would make and amazing Mothers Day gift,  £21.50 per person for the Champagne afternoon tea, or £14.00 without the Champagne.  Another great touch is that the offer a children's cream tea, a cute mini high tea with ham sandwich or cream cheese sandwich, slice of chocolate brownie, macaroons, strawberry, chocolate or vanilla milkshake, a great touch to make it a family event.

Food ***** Atmosphere ***** Service *****

L x
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