I am on the verge of a food coma after an amazing afternoon tea at the Hilton Syon Park. We’ve been once before for my Mother-in-law’s birthday and I wanted to take my parents as a post-Christmas present, so almost a year later, we found ourselves back again. It used to be a Waldorf Astoria, and we were a little worried that things might have dramatically changed, but everything seemed the same as we walked in.
There was a little hiccup when the maitre d’ led us into a quiet corner of the Cocktail Bar, and we quickly realised that we wouldn’t be sat in The Capability. A last minute event had meant that main restaurant would now be closed, but the staff could not have been more apologetic, offering us discount and free cocktails and champagne. And as it turns out, tea in the comfy seats of the bar was actually really lovely.
Although we were looked after by one waitress (who I think was called Laura – I wish I’d checked it with her), all of the staff were really attentive. We were right by a speaker, so they turned the music down for us, and every time someone walked passed, we got a smile and a “how is everything”. We felt really cared for. Laura was excellent though, really chatty and smiley. We couldn’t have asked for a better server.
We got our drinks – I chose a non-alcoholic Bramble On, Husband had a gin martini, and my parents both had champagne – and took a look at the menu full of yummy sandwiches. Everything is so well designed and beautifully decorated – even down to the crockery, which is covered in butterflies for the Butterfly House in the grounds.
I had the veggie, everyone else had the ‘standard’. The tea arrived first and I do appreciate this sounds very stupid, but I don’t really like tea so I had some sparkling water. The others were more normal though, Husband having a pot of orange oolong tea, and my parents having the ‘signature’ Syon Park afternoon tea. They all really enjoyed their tea.
And then the food arrived.
It was just as good as I remembered – the cucumber with celery salt is my favourite and is so simple but so flavourful. The scones are incredibly soft inside and delicious with the cream and jam. And we’re a little embarrassed to report that we barely put a dent in the pile of pastries we had, but thank goodness for boxes to take them away with us. We now have a weekend of slowly filling ourselves up with the rich little cakes.
I already want to go back. Once I’ve actually recovered from the sugar overdose. Now excuse me, I’m off for my unreasonably long nap.