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Afternoon Tea at Chewton Glen New Forest - very special occasion

Lymington.com Review Afternoon Tea at Chewton Glen

A very special occasion, enjoyed at leisure, served by delightful staff in the spring sunshine, at a table with a beautiful view

What price perfection? Whatever, it's worth every penny!

In May 2022, for our first visit back to Chewton Glen since Covid and lockdowns, we were fortunate enough to be treated also to warm spring weather which made it possible to sit on the dining terrace in the sunshine. 

Chewton Glen hallway entrance floral display First, as is customary, full of anticipation we breathed in the country park surroundings as we drove down the main driveway and parked easily in the gravelled guest car park - which offers generously sized parking spaces and from which it is just a short stroll to the main entrance area and front door.

Then we stopped as in previous visits to admire the fabulous and always seasonal floral display in the hallway, before walking on down to the front of the hotel where the comfortably spaced, beautifully set tables in the large, light and airy dining room enhance the sense of anticipation.  

Greeted by Richard and his team we then chose our table on the terrace where a few others had also opted to make the most of the sunshine. Which gave us literally a room with a most delightful view, of the south facing sloping gardens furnished with comfortable sunbeds where a few brave guests were tentatively baring a little white skin to the afternoon sunshine, and the outdoor pool into which some were even taking a dip, on down to the stream and the woods beyond. You'd never think you were sitting in a garden not far from the main road between Highcliffe and New Milton. The parkland surroundings are enveloping and the sense is of luxuriating in the heart of quintessential English countryside!

Tea at Lunchtime - perfect timing for many of us

Afternoon tea taken for lunch

Based on changes trialled and since adopted at sister hotel Cliveden, Afternoon Tea at Chewton Glen is now served 12 noon to 4pm. In other words, we can enjoy the occasion at lunchtime if it suits and we prefer, which is in fact what we two ladies chose to do and which made it potentially possible to make space for supper later!

(Lunch is still served in the dining room on weekends, but on weekdays guests now take lunch if they wish in the bar area or the Kitchen.)

The starting touch, the amuse bouche of Warm Old Winchester and truffle literally melted in our mouths and somehow suits lunch better than teatime too. 

The perfectly prepared no crust sandwich soldiers (one each of smoked ham and mustard, Flambards egg and smoked salmon) were delicious and the coronation chicken with golden raisins brioche sublime.

With or without bubbles - Nyetimber for us

Chewton Glen afternoon tea cakes

There is a range of Afternoon Tea options including the one we enjoyed and I think I'd recommend to make this an ultra special occasion for only a relatively small additional expense, it includes a glass of sparkling English Nyetimber. In fact we were even offered top up glasses - which although tempting, you'll be relieved to hear our driver declined.

The surprise twist which transpires to be royally topical too: a lemony lift

This morning's announcement of the surprise official pudding for the Queen's Platinum Jubilee as a lemon and Swiss roll amaretti trifle couldn't be timelier - all the comments I've seen or heard so far are about its uplifting, lemony twist. 

Chewton Glen's new "Tregothnan" (home made British!) tea selection includes four black teas, a green and five herbals - quite some decision making to be accomplished.

Opting for the Lemon Verbena tea and choosing the homemade lemon curd which was offered as an alternative to jam with the thick clotted cream and freshly baked scones, I discovered almost by chance a completely new and zingy flavour which I would definitely choose again.

Following those with the Amalfi lemon meringue tart before moving on to the sweeter cakes (matcha green tea and apricot, mascarpone praline and lemon eclair) was a good decision for me, too. But obviously that's a personal preference. 

(Chewton Glen will be offering a very special Afternoon Tea for Platinum Jubilee Weekend - just saying!)

Doggy bags - or rather boxes - included!

It's such a lovely extra touch that what you cannot eat, together with a final slice of cake from the trolley, you can take home - for later or for your family to sample!  And even in separate boxes! 

Chewton Glen afternoon tea great service and going home presents

A deliciously special occasion for which time is the other essential ingredient

Afternoon tea whether taken at lunchtime or teatime is an opportunity to take special time out with someone or someones. This opens up the possibility of conversations for which we don't usually make time, for times when we do actually have time, to remember, reflect, consider, discuss, matters of importance to our relationships whatever they may be.

Our own special conversation included memories, different childhoods, parents, and other subjects we don’t normally have time nor feel inclined to talk about properly, yet which are good for the soul to visit occasionally. I can only recommend taking time out to enjoy and appreciate this treat fully. 

Afternoon Tea at Chewton Glen, from £45 per person

Treat friends and family to the quintessential English custom of a purely indulgent Afternoon Tea in a beautifully idyllic setting. Served in The Dining Room (12pm-4pm).

More details and bookings here 

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