18 December 2012

Camellia's Tea House


At the end of every London trip, I find out about a spot, usually a tea spot, that sounds wonderful.  Of course at that point there's no time to get to said spot, so I sigh and file it away for next time.

This happened to me in 2010, when Bonnie and I went to Carnaby Street and found this little multi-level shopping level right off the street, in Kingly Court.  Tucked away on the top floor was a full-on tea room that I'd known nothing about.  Oh no!  But I knew, of course, that I'd do my best to get back to London, and on Day 2 of this most recent trip, I took afternoon tea at Camellia's Tea House - great name, by the way.  Puts you right in the mood for tea.

It was 17.50 (that's British currency) for the full service, which is extremely reasonable for London.  When I say service I mean you do order at the counter, pub-like, but they bring everything to your table.  That's a mercy, and not just to me: their china is quite pretty.  I ordered the 'Pain Free Monthly Tea', which the girl behind the counter was dubious about.  She didn't think it tasted very good.  I insisted, for sadly obvious reasons, and then I was asked to pick my cake  I couldn't help but go for the gold, so I picked the Victoria Sponge.  

It was reasonably busy, as it was lunchtime, but not crowded.  My table was next to an unfortunate painting of some colonial maharajan situation, but my view as you can see was of the other tea-takers.   I was pleased to see that my sandwiches were devoid of tomatoes, and there were three different types.  The scones were perfectly British, and generous with cream and jam.  The tea, or really herbal infusion, was pleasant, not bad by any means.  I don't know if it did the trick, though, as I started to feel ill again before I was able to get to the cake, and had to exit much quicker than I'd have liked.  I did try the cake later on, and it was good, so I'm sure it was amazing when it was fresh. 

It was a real pity that my health wasn't what I'd have liked it to be, because I feel like I couldn't take in the tea room as well as I should have.  Photography was discouraged for the shopping area, but it was mostly bit old canisters of tea that needed to be smelled to be appreciated anyway.  They did look promising.   I'll be sure to try to make it back again - next time!

When I was feeling a tiny bit better, I was able to walk off the calories via Regent Street.  I particularly liked this shop, full of tartan goodness.
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