I have been to French Affaire many times; for dinner (which was nice) and for lunch (delicious) but what was truly memorable from both those visits were the desserts; their desserts/pattiseries are truly scrumptious. Therefore the idea of experiencing a French Affaire afternoon tea was an exciting prospect.
I went along with a close friend; we sat outside because the weather was pleasant and they have a newly expanded seating area which is covered and has heaters (because you know – England!). Speaking of this; when I visited in the winter they provided blankets and seat covers and heaters and it was lovely and cosy.
To begin, I have to make a rather random comment about the cutlery. Even the cutlery is classy – a sort of bronze colour, and the milk pail, so cute. So yes it began well with pretty cutlery, a pot of tea and then we were served a large plate of savouries to share. There were 2 of each item. The spinach and mascarpone tartlet was memorable, I do love me some cheese. However, I wasn’t too focussed on the savouries, because for me it is all about the cakes and scones with an afternoon tea.
And wow what a spectacle the cakes made – in their sort of half a bird cage. They looked so aethetically pleasing. I could not wait to try the plant pot cake. And I was not disappointed, it was a chocolate plant pot with strawberry cheesecake inside – oh my it was delectable. The chocolate and praline cake was my next favourite, then followed by a flavourful pistachio cake. These cakes are surprisingly filling, so I was only able to eat one of the delicious scones and no more cake; I was full to the brim.
They obviously have an artisan who makes these cakes; especially as they have recently opened a little cafe opposite the restaurant serving only their pattiseries and cake delights (plus an awesome looking waffle on a stick with a million toppings), so I will certainly be going back for their cakes and sweet treats again at their cafe L’Atelier.
During lockdown their afternoon teas were available for home delivery; which I think they still offer. However they do have a lovely alfresco area which would be perfect this time of year.
My only niggle with French Affaire is that their service is not as warm as I would like, perhaps it was a language barrier, as the server was French. They were not rude though and it would certainly not put me off from trying their absolutely delicious cakes and pattiseries.
The afternoon tea cost £25 per person. I think this was on the pricey side but the food really was special so it is worth it.