The History of Afternoon Tea

Friday, 15 May 2015

The History of Afternoon TeaAfternoon tea is becoming more and more popular in modern day Britain as a delicious treat to enjoy with friends and family, with everyone from top hotels to high street tea rooms offering their version of it. But where did this tradition start, and who can we thank for this delightfully sweet past time?

The traditional afternoon tea was created by Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford in the early 19th century. The usual habit of serving dinner between 8-9pm left the Duchess hungry in the late afternoon and so to stave off the hunger she would order tea, bread & butter and cakes to be served in her room.

Later on she would invite friends to join her at her home and the light tea was such a success that this habit soon caught on and spread throughout England. The taking of tea gradually spread from the home and out into society in general. Tea parties become normal and soon tea rooms and tea gardens were springing up across the country.

During the Edwardian period, the 'At Home' tea faded as the desire to travel increased. Tea was now served at four o'clock in the new tea lounges of luxury hotels and high-end stores much like you see today!

Patisserie Valerie offers Afternoon Tea for Two across our cafés nationwide priced at £25 for two. A select few of our cafés offer to add a little sparkle to your Afternoon Tea with a prosecco option for £30 for two.

*image source: Pinterest

Afternoon Tea | Anna Russell | Duchess of Bedford

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