Charlie & the Chocolate Factory afternoon tea - at One Aldwych

Saturday, October 25, 2014

It's tradition when friends and family from New Zealand visit London to take them out for a fancy afternoon tea. Over the years I've narrowed the wide selection afternoon teas in London to a few firm favourites, including the Corinthia Hotel London and beautiful Claridge's.

However, this year I decided to take my parents to the famous Charlie & the Chocolate Factory inspired afternoon tea at One Aldwych. We had tickets to go see the show as well - so it felt like the right choice.

One Aldwych - the setting

I had anticipated a whimsical setting to match the story of Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, but actually The Lobby Bar where we were seated was pure adult sophistication. No children running around on a sugar high here! With windows running the length of each side of the room there was plenty of natural light, and we settled back comfortably in our soft chairs ready for the delicious food marathon that was to come...

The Salt Family

Charlie & the Chocolate Factory Afternoon Tea - the menu

Each menu was decorated on the underside with an illustration from the original story. My menu showed the spoilt Veruca Salt in her ballet costume with her father.

And on the underside we were given a glimpse of what we had to look forward to.

I fell in love with the selection of teas on offer and chose the Smooth Caramel - a black tea with 'caramel chunks and a hint of vanilla make this tea ideal for anyone with a sweet tooth'.


Charlie & the Chocolate Factory Afternoon Tea - highlights
  1. The presentation of the sweets - fluffy candy-floss, golden eggs and miniature milkshakes. Willy Wonka himself would have been impressed! The detail in each individual piece was incredible. 
  2. The scones and jams - so soft and fluffy. These are some of the best scones I've had in my time in London, and the meadowsweet apple compote was a unique twist to the more standard berry jams you often get with afternoon tea.
  3. The leisurely pace in which we dined. There seemed to be no time limit and the courses came out at a great pace too - giving us enough time in-between to digest what we had just eaten.

Sweets and sandwiches
Charlie & the Chocolate Factory afternoon tea
{photo via One Aldwych}

A top tip from me to you

Go with an uneven number of people. The sweet selection is served in even numbers, so if you go with three people for example you will get four of everything. This means if one treat really takes your fancy you can enjoy it twice! For me this was the chocolate caramel milkshake. Amazing!

Willy Wonka: But Charlie, don't forget what happened to the man 
who suddenly got everything he always wanted.
Charlie: What happened?
Willy Wonka: He lived happily ever after.

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  1. Afternoon tea, I love it... For me, it is só "absolutely British"...
    I just have one problem with afternoon tea : when I have it, I don't succeed anymore in eating dinner afterwards...
    Please tell me your secret how you do it ;-) !

    1. A ha. The secret is to stave yourself all day so your stomach is making lots of weird growling noises on arrival and then take your time during your afternoon feast. Alternate - sip of tea, bite of cake and so on ;)

  2. That sounds amazing. I had to laugh at your tip though, a girl after my own heart! :D

    1. Lol. Glad you liked the tip :)

  3. I love the idea of teaming a show with a themed tea. Also, great tip re the number of people!

    1. Thanks Lisa. It was such a fun, delicious afternoon.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Elizabeth :) It was amazing. Great for anyone who has a sweet tooth.

  5. This sounds so good! I love the presentation of everything, it so cute!

    1. The presentation was very well done - from the illustrations to the food. The perfect afternoon tea.

  6. Awh this looks like a lovely tea - I especially love the beautiful illustration. Haha that is such a great tip, definitely something I would be a bit fan of :)

    1. You have to share these nuggets of knowledge when you have them :) Hope you're having a lovely weekend Jessi

  7. OMG! That looks amazing, what a treat!

  8. Wow that is pure art! Beautiful and looks delicious!