Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons
This is a little bit of a cheat as I didn’t actually go all the way with Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons. In fact, we barely got to second base, just a quick fling with a hot chocolate and delicious piece of lemon drizzle cake.
However, I have no doubt that had our relationship gone further, the afternoon tea at Le Manoir and I would have been very happy together.
The atmosphere is one of country house calm, settled into deep sofas in the traditional-without-being-chintzy interiors. The hot chocolate was a post-walk treat, after we had spent a relaxing hour or so wandering the gradens. Gardens are a big part of the Le Manoir experience, and even if you’re going for lunch, you’re encouraged to take a post-prandial potter before coffee or dessert.
After admiring the organic vegetable garden, loosing at a game of croquet and spending a little too long oohing and aahing over the ducklings, it was inside for refreshments. It is no secret to those that know me that I am partial to a hot chocolate in a teapot. It’s just funny, right? A tea pot is all grown up and tea party-like, a vessel for sophisticated, spicy beverages, but it’s got hot chocolate in it – hot chocolate! The stuff of bedtime and indulgence.
Anyway, Le Manoir didn’t disappoint, a generous helping was served in a silver pot, with a moist and tangy lemon drizzle on the side. The cake was the perfect mix of sweet and sour, sticky and soft. If I hadn’t been booked in for ten courses of dinner in just three hours I’d have been sorely tempted to take the whole tea. However, it was not to be and Le Manoir’s afternoon tea and I remained the fling that never was. Oh well, maybe next time.
Scone rating: 4 out of 5 (wonderful setting and tea tastette, but we didn’t get to try the whole thing)