Afternoon tea is the quintessential British form of indulgence.
We’re all for circumstances where you can be patriotic and stuff your face simultaneously. A towering carousel full of cakes, sandwiches and of course, tea that you can tackle from all angles with a loved one is the best way to spend any afternoon. Everyone loves afternoon tea but Mum’s especially. It is just part of being Mum. Just like how they can fix the most tangled and stubborn clingfilm and heal any cut or injury with their magic spit. We’re lucky that there are lots of places doing afternoon tea right in Liverpool and some mavericks testing the boundaries of tradition – it is Liverpool after all.
It’s officially Afternoon Tea Week so get out and enjoy the celebrations, take your Nan, take your partner or take your dog and remember that wherever you decide to indulge, you’re what makes Britain great. Or is it the cake? Let’s say both play an active role. Ladies (and men) who lunch, this one is for you.
Inspired by the New York baking scene, Matthew and Elaine decided to give up their day jobs and follow their dream by bringing a little slice of New York to Liverpool. They’re famous for their afternoon teas and even offer one with a glass of bubbly to the side, everyone loves the bubbles. All your expected sandwiches and cakes are present but displayed with a certain brilliance. The red velvet is almost onomatopoeia as its velvety texture coats your tongue and tantalises your tastebud making every bite better than the last. Cuthbert’s has been putting the pleasant in Mt. Pleasant for years and offers something for everyone, go and see what you can find.
Address: 103 Mount Pleasant, Liverpool, Merseyside L3 5TB
The Baltic Social
The Baltic Social found home in the Baltic Triangle area amongst the plethora of other independents that ooze a certain creative culture. There are times in history where a small few go against the ordinary, Baltic Social certainly did this with their punk afternoon tea full of sliders, mini hot dogs, deep fried goodies and Punk IPA out of a teacup all served on a skyscraper stack of old vinyls. Your granny might not at first approve but after a few tea cups of IPA, she’ll sure change her mind. From the weird to the wonderful, The Baltic Social offers a retreat from the humdrum and all are welcome to enter; if not encouraged.
Address: 27 Parliament St, Liverpool L8 5RN
Crosby Tea Rooms
Time machines are quite hard to get your hands on these days so if you fancy being transported to the 1940’s where the rations are over but the girls wear polka dots, Crosby Tea Rooms is your best bet. All handmade from scratch, wedges of red velvet hang next to freshly baked scones that are accompanied with lashings of fruity jam and clotted cream. A match made in heaven. Wash it down with one of their incredible selections of tea, they have quite a few but hey, a perfect excuse to return and try them all. Although the decade for inspiration also coincides with the prohibition era, the tea is so good you’ll end up drunk off it.
Address: 185A College Road, Liverpool, Merseyside L23 3AT
London Carriage Works
Hope Street has gone through a bit of a renaissance as of late. The beautiful Georgian inspired quarter defines elegance and the plethora of fantastic eateries, boozers and playhouses aren’t bad either. The London Carriage Works is no different and although people assume winning multi-awards would result in a pretentious facade, that very sombre statement couldn’t be further from the truth. Their afternoon tea oozes tradition but the execution is to be marvelled at. The perfectly cut finger sandwiches, the well risen scones and the quality crockery used all make for a classy affair, if the setting itself wasn’t enough.
Address: Hope Street Hotel, 40 Hope St, L1 9DA
They say a picture says a thousand words and all the ones related to the picture below are “spectacular”. Not only one of the best afternoon teas in the city but you get to look at the best view of the city whilst you do it. A dangerous combination for your wallet, waistline and Instagram newsfeed. You can see the whole of Liverpool and beyond whilst you get stuck in and they even give you a glass of bubbly to the side. The only tipple deemed appropriate to accompany such a sophisticated soiree.
Address: 34th Floor, West Tower, Brook Street, L3 9PJ
Oh Me Oh My
Oh Me Oh My is a grand venue off the beaten track on Water Street in West Africa House. It might not have the footfall of Bold Street but people will happily walk the extra mile and after five seconds of being inside, you’ll realise why. The inside looks like a Marilyn Monroe makeup set; large mirrors with incredible details on the frame are lit up with fairy lights that cascade themselves around it. Piano pieces treacle out the sound system and it all makes for a classy and romantic affair. The perfect place for afternoon tea and they’re specialists at it. You can be all prim and proper with posture to boot. Think of a scouse Great Gatsby remake and you’re not far off.
Address: West Africa House, 25 Water St, L2 0RG
They say you use all your senses to enjoy food and the surroundings for the Tea Parlour accompany the afternoon better than the jam does the scones. It is a Grade II listed warehouse on the cobbled stones of Mathew Street and is a vintage-inspired venue that serves up a big slice of nostalgia with each slice of cake. Tucked away on the first floor of the Victorian landmark turned art gallery, Tea Parlour is a pleasant place to relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of our resident pianist in a sunlit sitting room. The homemade chocolate eclairs will result in many foodgasms.
Address: 23 Mathew Street, Liverpool L2 6RE
You’ve got to walk far to find a hidden gem like Albion Bakehouse but some people are lucky enough to have it on their doorstep. Everyone seems to have the same experience with Albion Bakehouse where they will pop in for a tea or coffee and fall in love with the cake. As far as we are concerned good cake is worth travelling for and their afternoon tea is so popular they’re usually booked up weeks in advance.
Address: 10 Leyland Street, Prescot, Knowsley L34 5QP
You know when it’s got jam in the name it’s going to be good. On the beautiful Sir Thomas Street, a new restaurant and tea bar has just opened with picturesque views, Instagrammable plates of food and a pretty mean looking cheese board. Looks pretty ordinary, huh? How wrong. The gluten-free and vegan community has grown in strong numbers as of late. This has encouraged chefs and restauranteurs to redesign menus and offer something exciting and enticing. Introducing Jam, a completely gluten-free tea bar by day and restaurant by night.
60 Hope Street
60 Hope Street is elegant, contemporary and puts traditional twists on the best of British. It is one of the best known for the city’s most ambitious restaurants and occupies an imposing and beautiful Georgian Grade ll Listed building with arguably one of the prettiest facades in the city. They specialise in afternoon tea and the most beautiful, buttery and fluffy scones. They even do a Mad Hatters Tea Party every now and then, which is a serious experience.
Marmalade Skies is a child friendly independent cafe in the Penny Lane area of Allerton, ran by two local Mums. Serving delicious homemade food, great coffee, afternoon teas and a variety of fun, healthy kids options. They welcome all and strive to create an environment that can be enjoyed by every member of the family, especially the smallest ones! They also offer a variety of different activities and sessions for parents, babies, toddlers and kids daily, as well as a party room for children’s parties, baby showers, hen parties and other smaller functions. The baby can do some yoga whilst you eat a scone, sounds like a good comprise, doesn’t it?
Address: 13 Allerton Rd, Liverpool L18 1LG
Got yourself an Independent Liverpool Membership Card yet? The brand new and FIFTH card is here and we’re doing special deal. They’re usually £15 for 1 or £20 for 2 but we’re doing a huge sale where it’s only £12 for 1 or £17 for two. That’s an absolute bargain and gets you discounts and deals at over 100 of Liverpool’s best independents. The deal won’t last long so act fast. Grab it here.