Friday, 29 April 2016

Foodie Friday | Afternoon Tea at the Halfway House



Never before in my life have I felt more like I am cheating on one of my favourite little places more than I am while writing this blog post. You might remember that back in March I wrote about going for Afternoon tea at the Summerhouse Bakery, which is one of my favourite places ever! You can read that post here if you want to refresh you're memory of why it's my favourite place ever.

I think if you know me at all, in any way, then you will know how much I love the idea of afternoon tea and just how desperate I am to be eating tiny little finger sandwiches everyday. I secretly dream of being the queen okay...

So knowing that, can you really blame me for jumping at the chance to go for afternoon tea at the Halfway house when I heard that they were putting one on? Also I should very quickly point out that Ashleigh, a very good friend who I've grown up with, works at the Halfway House which is how I managed to get some behind the scene photos of the food from the kitchen that you'll be able to see in the first four photos.

Let me start off by saying that the food was incredible, and even though everything was finger sized I felt like I ate so much. I was actually surprised by how filling an afternoon tea like this could be.

To start with we were treated to a glass of champagne each when we sat down and while we were waiting for our food to be bought out, which is always a nice touch and made it feel a little bit more special. We were then bought a three tier stand which was filled with our starters and sandwiches. For starter we had a mini prawn cocktail each, which is always one of my favourite starters so it will always be a winner with me. We also had a spoon each to go with our crackers which was filled with a pâté and a mousse. I'm useless at tastes if someone doesn't tell me what I'm eating but we're pretty sure that the mousse was a salmon mousse and that the pâtè was duck as we had a little mandarin slice accompanying it. Both were beautiful, they were incredibly rich in flavour and insanely smooth. I also loved how they were presented!

We had a range of sandwiches as well as a selection of finger sandwiches and little squares. Thankfully there was not a cucumber sandwich in sight, but instead we had egg, cheese, ham, turkey and cranberry, smoked salmon and cream cheese and we are still arguing amongst ourselves if the other was tuna or salmon. See what I mean about being useless with flavours if I'm not told what I'm eating? The selection of flavours kept things really interesting and it was really nice to have a range of different breads as well as fillings.

I could not believe my eyes when they bought us out our pudding tray.. I could have died and gone to heaven right there. I am a massive pudding lover, but oh my god I could not have prepared myself for the selection of puddings that were bought out. There was this beautifully soft coconut sponge, which I then followed by the gorgeous little trifle because the strawberry and chocolate decoration were calling my name. I then had to reach for the prettiest little pastry that was filled with a delicious jam, followed by my crème brûlée. A crème brûlée is my weakness so I will always be left wanting more, but this one was just the right balance of sweetness and caramalised sugar. There wasn't a hint of the sugar being burnt and the whole crème brûlée was perfectly made and perfectly smooth.

This then left me with my scone, which I knew I was going to save till last so that I could pair it with my tea.. I'm insanely traditional and old like that. The scones were some of the best that I have had in a long time. They were the perfect size to follow up eating all that and beautifully made. A nice little surprise was the hint of cinnamon that was running through them, something that I've never had in a scone before but something that worked perfectly. We were provided with plenty of cream and jam and kept being topped up with tea all the way through.

Everything was home made and it really did show and you could just see all the effort that had gone in to making this afternoon tea experience. Unfortunately this isn't something that the Halfway House do regularly, but if they did I would honestly be there on a weekly basis because I loved it so, so much. For £12 per person you really couldn't ask for anything else.. Seriously, this gorgeous afternoon tea only cost £12 per person.

Somehow I've never been to the Halfway House before so I can't comment on any of the food they offer regularly but I've only ever heard good things. If this afternoon tea experience is anything to judge by then The Halfway House is really somewhere that you should be trying for yourself.