If it's a fun, frivolous tea in an escapist setting you're after, look no further. The Sanderson's central courtyard is a lush zen-styled garden with a pond, waterfall and lush foliage, all covered by a clear canopy and kept temperate with heaters.On the downside, the Alice in Wonderland themed tea, while kooky and playful, is not for the connoisseur, and service can be a touch overbearing.
Courtyard At the Sanderson
|Venue name:||Courtyard At the Sanderson||Contact:|
|Cross street:||50 Berners St|
|Opening hours:||Afternoon tea served 2-5.30pm Mon-Fri, noon-5.30pm Sat, Sun|
|Transport:||Tube: Oxford Circus or Tottenham Court Rd tube|
|Price:||Afternoon tea £35 per head|
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Looking for an afternoon tea experience that is out of the ordinary? Follow Alice down the rabbit hole to the Sanderson Hotel for their Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. Presented in the lush interior garden courtyard and bar of this surrealist five star, just a skip from Oxford Street and Soho, their decadent Wonderland-inspired spread features bespoke crockery from Luna & Curious – the Queen and King of Hearts observe the scene from opposite sides of your paper crown-bedecked tea pot – and menus secreted inside second-hand books. Even Alice would have gawked at the three-tiered stand of confections that arrive at your table alongside a rainbow of rolled sandwiches – spinach bread with cucumber was our particular favourite. Everything was edible except the plates: chocolate cups with matcha tea mousse, sweet and savoury scones, Victoria sponge with a raspberry candy clock set at tea time, mushroom-shaped marshmallows. Even tiny medicine bottles labeled ‘Drink Me’ containing a layered coconut, mango and passionfruit concoction: the flavour changes as you sip. The sheer amount of sugar on offer calls for strategic fasting beforehand. Over the top? Absolutely. Too much? Definitely not. We were comparing dates to come back before the tea had even finished. The attention to detail truly makes the experience fantastic: from rhyme-wrapped napkins to bright orange meringue carrots in a cup of pea shoots (March Hare: take note), the Sanderson has pulled out all the stops to turn the London tea scene on its head. Carroll would be proud. Drink me? Why yes, please: I’ll have the rhubarb tea and a scarlet martini.