afternoon tea etiquette

{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs

all coming from an expert cake consumer

When I first moved to the UK for graduate school, the first thing on my list was to make afternoon tea a
ritual. I think I was lucky to have housemates that enjoyed everything confectionary, delicate and
indulgent. We would have afternoon teas as together where we all pitched in to make cute sandwiches and
little cakes, then treated ourselves to indulgent ones at some of the restaurants and cafes in St. Andrews.
Some we dressed up for and others we enjoyed the views. In the end, we treated ourselves to an extravagant high
tea and learned a few etiquette tips on the way… I like to say I got the full royal experience
whilst living at St. Andrews!
 

{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs
{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs {afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs

dress

It’s the perfect opportunity for any girl to dress up in a cute sheath dress, kitten heels and a little
lipstick. I prefer to go for a fit and flare, which makes indulgence a little easier. Most venues, however,
ask for a ‘smart casual’ dress code. That’s blazer for the guys and anything but denim for the girls.

terminology

Cream tea is a scone with cream and preserves with a pot of tea. An afternoon tea is a selection of
cakes, sandwiches and scone and a pot of team. A high-tea {often confused with afternoon tea} is a heartier
meal focusing on the savories. Finally, a royal tea is an afternoon tea plus a glass of champagne.
The royal tea is obvious a c&é favorite!
 

{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs

cream & jam

It’s so funny because when I had my first cream tea experience, my friend put her clotted cream on the scone
first and then the jam. I went the other way around and then later was a convert. You can place whatever
you would like first on the scones.The Devon tradition is cream first with jam spread on top whilst the Cornish
tradition is to slather the jam on and top it off with clotted cream. At the end of the day it remains a
matter of preference.

your tea

Brewing time depends completely on your taste and preference. I prefer a black tea with my tea experience as
it doesn’t taint the flavor of the food as much. I let the black tea just “flirt” with the water so it’s
a bit less “chalky” and more on the refreshing side. When stirring, place the spoon at 6’clock and move
up and down without clinking the glass.

You can place your milk, lemon and/or sugar before or after pouring tea into your teacup. It’s important
to remember basic science though! Pouring tea after cold milk could crack the very delicate china. But placing
milk first ensures a well blended tea.
 

{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs
{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs
{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs

BB Bakery, Covent Garden

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The sweetest {no pun intended} little tea salon full of beautiful florals and delectable treats. Alina
and I walked in through the white door accompanied with bright pink italicized font. It was an oasis for women
and men of all ages. The quintessential British oasis, if you would say. As we say down, we were immediately
brought over fresh pressed orange juice and a menu with that day’s treats. I couldn’t choose between an
infusion tea or go with my normal black, but I knew I wanted the cakes when I eyed the other tables.

The china, I think, makes or breaks the experience. The china must be sweet, petite and fit for the occasion.
It made the moment extremely girly. Though we visited their standing salon in Covent Garden, BB Bakery
also has afternoon tea options as a bus tour and a boat ride on the River Thames! Or just host one
on your own at home or in the park with their delivery service.
 

{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs {afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs
{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs
{afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs {afternoon tea etiquette with BB Bakery} chevrons & éclairs

A warm thank you to BB Bakery for making this post possible!