Friday, July 25, 2014

Afternoon Tea at Sketch

Last week it was time for our annual summer get together to enjoy the institution that is afternoon tea. The venue this year was Sketch in London's Mayfair. I'm not really sure where you would start if you wanted to describe Sketch, it's eclectic to say the least but there is interest at every turn and if you're looking for a quirky, fun venue then this could be the place for you.
Sketch is a collection of individually designed rooms, each one a restaurant or bar...there are 6 in total. We enjoyed afternoon tea in the Gallery. The Gallery is newly refurbished with 239 of David Shrigley's drawings lining the walls. It's a pink palace of splendour and offers an opulent dining experience.
Now to the important bit...the tea itself! We went for the champagne tea served with a glass of Pommery Brut Silver. As always there were assorted sandwiches, scones and pastries and a range of teas to choose from. I went for a classic Breakfast Tea but there were plenty of alternatives including Oolong, Green, White and Herbal infusions.
To my mind, sandwiches are never the star attraction but I did particularly enjoy the warm mozzarella and pesto Croque Monsieur you can see below. The sandwich selection included smoked salmon and Jacob's cream, cucumber, ricotta and asparagus, egg and mayonnaise with quail's egg and caviar. These weren't my favourite combinations but that is probably down to personal taste as I'm more of a cheese and pickle kinda girl...I know this makes me a philistine!
Afternoon tea is really all about the cakes. The sketch pastries were pretty and petite morsels in a variety of flavours. We ate:

  • Old fashioned pistachio macaroons which were a bit coarser than a French macaroon
  • Almond and berry tartlets
  • Coffee eclairs
  • Strawberry cheesecake in a glass
  • Mousse Malabar marshmallows
  • Meringa tarta
  • Raspberry Meringue
  • Sketch Opera
All the pastries were tasty and my dining companions would probably say that the opera was their favourite. Mine was the meringa tarta. The scones were also very good, warm sultana scones served with jam and clotted cream...heaven!
The tableware followed the artistic theme which added to the quirky setting whilst still retaining an air of sophistication.
I enjoyed the raspberry meringues and marshmallows as the add a bit of a twist to traditional afternoon tea.

Ovearll, I'd recommend Sketch as much for the experience as for the afternoon tea! You can check your coat into a giant mouth, the toilets are individual eggs and you can admire the art inspired rooms. It's a glam setting and perfect if you're in London for a spot of shopping at the weekend as it's just off Regent Street...give it a go and see what you think.