19th August 2019

Northamptonshire’s Best Afternoon Tea Guide

What a week it’s been! Has everyone enjoyed National Afternoon Tea week? I know I have!

And to wrap up what’s been an amazing week, I have put together my full Afternoon Tea Guide to Northamptonshire which celebrates the amazing, the grand, the different and quirky Afternoon Tea services we have in the county. 

I have already published some awesome reviews of some Afternoon Tea places I have had the pleasure of visiting and experiencing across the county, which I will link all the full blog posts below and I plan to keep adding to this guide, just like I do with my already established coffee, brunch and local food & drink producer guides. 

Whether you love going to some of our most prestigious hotels in the county, or you’re looking for something a bit different, or you’re on a budget, I’ve got a great variety which you can explore. If you happen to go to any Afternoon Teas in Northamptonshire, don’t forget to tag your photos using #NavigatingNorthants

Now let us drool together… 

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Bell of Northampton

Bell of Northampton, primarily known as the house and lifestyle store, where you can spend hours browsing through the different independent retailers like Luxe Cookshop, MOOCH and the Rose Gallery. 

But if you’re feeling hungry, or you’re looking to combine a special occasion with some shopping, Bell of Northampton does a fantastic Afternoon Tea which my mum and I thoroughly enjoyed when I treated her for Mother’s Day. 

Bell are very good at creating instagrammable afternoon tea with a difference; rather than the stereotypical high tea, you’re displayed with a lovely flat iron afternoon tea which is filled with so much that you can hardly see the underneath. 

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We were served a selection of luxury finger sandwiches, from ham and cheese, egg and cress, to smoked salmon and cream cheese, which is always one of my favourite sandwich fillings! Scrumptious fruit scones that were so warm to the touch and mouth-watering to the taste, especially when slathering on homemade raspberry jam and clotted cream. 

On this occasion, we were served with pink frosted cupcakes, which gave a lovely bright essence to the platter and tasted very creamy, some crisps, macaroons, mini brownies, a mini pot of chocolate mousse and some other sweets.

Because it was Mother’s Day, the Afternoon Tea was served with a beautiful mini bouquet of pink flowers for my mum, which was an added touch to a lovely occasion. 

Afternoon Tea | Nicole Navigates

What I found out later on was that Bell Northampton make everything from scratch, from their jams, to their scones and cakes – which looking back and remembering the taste and textures, you can easily tell a lot of love has gone into this! 

Afternoon Tea at Bell Northampton is served between 2pm and 4pm (till 3:30pm on Saturdays) and is £22 for two people or £34 for three people. As always, it’s advised to book in advance. 

Afternoon Tea | Nicole Navigates

Kettering Park Hotel

Those who have been with me for a while will remember my visit to Kettering Park Hotel last year, where I was kindly gifted an Afternoon Tea to enjoy – so obviously, I had to include it in this guide as it was one of the best! 

If you’re looking for an escape away from the hustle and bustle, Kettering Park Hotel is your ideal getaway, but it can also be a great place to enjoy a classic Afternoon tea with all the trimmings. 

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You get sat in a beautiful dining room and Kettering Park Hotel served us the most delightful traditional Afternoon Tea in three tiers from sandwiches, scones and sweet treats and cakes.

I recall the biggest highlight of the experience was biting into a warm scone in which you could tell came straight out of the oven which just melted in my mouth. 

You get plenty of options in what you want to drink with your Afternoon Tea, whether it’s the traditional English tea, brewed coffee, juice or even prosecco if you’re celebrating. 

Traditional Afternoon Tea is served daily till 5pm and is £25 per person. 

Read the full review here 

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Bread & Pullet

You might think Bread & Pullet are just good for British Tapas and locally sourced food; think again, because they do their themed Afternoon Teas with a difference, whilst still staying true to their British heritage and ethos. 

Bread & Bullet is a relaxed British Tapas restaurant which serves classics in a modern way from local suppliers. We were kindly invited to try their Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea, which was a special themed one especially for Father’s Day – so it was a great occasion to spend some time with my dad over our mutual love of food. 

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When I visited Bread & Pullet, I was surprised at how many people didn’t know they did Afternoon Tea. Well, I’m here to tell you that they do and they do it well! 

Each of their Afternoon Teas are served in 3 rounds; savoury, scones and sweet, which is a concept I have never come across before in an Afternoon Tea, as usually everything comes together and makes a nice change. It was the most unique Afternoon Tea experience I’ve had and Bread & Pullet are very clever at putting a lot of great detail into their menus to ensure it fits within the theme. 

Bread & Pullet host lots of different themed Afternoon Tea, from a World Chocolate Day one, to Sprinkle and Unicorns one. Look out on their Facebook page for upcoming themed Afternoon Teas which they tend to do on Sunday where they open the restaurant especially. 

Read the full review here 

Afternoon Tea | Nicole Navigates

Beckworth Emporium

Shopping and Afternoon Tea? Yes please! 

Visiting Beckworth Emporium is always such a lovely occasion for me, as it’s one of my favourite farm shops to browse around as it has so many wonderful homegrown fruit and vegetables, gifts, handmade sweet treats and of course, lots of local produce! 

That’s why Beckworth Emporium is a great place to have Afternoon Tea, because you are guaranteed that most of it has been homemade from the products they stock in the shop. 

Again, this is not your traditional three tier afternoon tea and you have a choice of sitting under the airy, bright conservatory which is ideal for Spring/Summer, or you can choose to sit inside the cafe area if you want to shade away from the heat or keep warm in the Autumn/Winter.

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At Beckworth Emporium, it’s very laid back, casual dining, so you never have to feel too pressured to dress up or feel like you have to put on an appearance. In my experience, Beckworth Emporium is great for a girls catch up because you can shop first, then indulge in afternoon tea! 

The Afternoon Tea comes with mini cake selections from blueberry to strawberry victoria sponge, homemade crumbly shortbread with cream and strawberries, to pots of strawberry mousse and savoury crisps. 

On the last occasion we visited, we had a vegetarian who wanted their own selection of sandwiches, so Beckworth are happy to provide this for those who have dietary requirements such as this. 

Beckworth Emporium Afternoon Tea is served between 2pm – 5pm with last orders at 4:30pm. 

Copper Kitchen | Nicole Navigates

The Copper Kitchen

Oh, I love Gemma and the Copper Kitchen – and you should too!

Those who remember, I was kindly gifted an Afternoon Tea from The Copper Kitchen. However, The Copper Kitchen is not your typical Afternoon Tea service which you go out and book for. Oh nope, this is MUCH more convenient if you don’t fancy stepping outside your house.

Gemma, who owns the Copper Kitchen, provides an Afternoon Tea home delivery service! I believe it’s super ideal if you have family members or friends who can’t get out of the house and you want to treat them to something special, or perhaps you have an event that requires Afternoon Tea for things like baby showers or birthdays.

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Gemma is happy to accommodate to what you want, including any dietary requirements and she will come to your house and set everything up for you, from the linen on the tables, to the beautiful vintage china plates and cutlery and even vases with flowers!

She really does bring the whole experience to you, which leaves you worrying about nothing but indulging into the delicious homemade food!

Check out The Copper Kitchen’s website here. 

Read the review here 

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Highgate House Hotel

Nothing says Happy Birthday quite like an Afternoon Tea at Highgate House! I was very lucky to enjoy my favourite British speciality for my 25th birthday and Highgate House Hotel sure know how to do it well!

Surrounded by a beautiful, botanic scene, you can’t help but feel so zen as soon as you walk in. Everywhere feels so calm and relaxed, which is the optimal environment to enjoy an Afternoon Tea.

Highgate House Hotel offer 3 types of Afternoon Tea for you to enjoy; Traditional (£22pp), Pimm’s (£26pp) and Champagne Afternoon Tea (£28pp) – so there’s plenty of options for whatever occasion you’re celebrating or not. If you’d rather have something smaller, Highgate House Hotel also offer a Traditional Cream Tea (£6.50pp) which includes scones and your choice of drink.

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On this occasion, we went for the Traditional Afternoon Tea. My mum and I were seriously impressed with everything that was displayed in front of our eyes. So much colour, layers and so many tasty treats to get stuck into – and what was better, we had a lovely waitress, who made our experience extra special!

The highlight for both of us, though small, was the chocolate covered strawberries which just melted and oozed in our mouths and made us feel all dreamy and heavenly. It’s not often you find chocolate covered strawberries in Afternoon Tea but it seriously worked and we both could have easily had more! 

Everything smelt warm and fresh, it was colourful to the eye and looked hefty and big – so if you’re looking for a proper Afternoon Tea to dig into, as opposed to a dainty one, you need to come here. 

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The scones were some of the biggest I’ve ever eaten and came in 3 types; plain, fruit and even pistachio! I liked how Highgate didn’t just settle for the classics; they went all out and above to offer different scone taste experiences. 

Highgate House will ensure your special occasion is catered for, as I felt very special on my birthday! 

Read the full review here

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The Good Loaf

The Good Loaf aren’t just an incredible local enterprise with good morals, a clear message and great coffee – they do afternoon tea too! 

They are a unique social enterprise who are passionate about giving people a chance, as their staff are made up of experienced staff, community volunteers and women on a work experience programme. 

I love everything that the Good Loaf stands for and I am so glad since I visited them last year for Afternoon Tea, that their ethos, message and great cafes have spread to more locations around Northamptonshire. 

I’ve mentioned that this wouldn’t strike to most as an Afternoon Tea location, but if you’re looking for one at a reasonable price which is just as nice, filling and all locally sourced, this one’s for you. 

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Their Afternoon Teas components are all huge and you can tell there’s been a lot of homemade love that’s gone into the cakes, scones and sandwiches. The sandwiches are full of filling, which is plenty to get a bite out of and the scones are warm, moist and crumbly; just what you want for a scone. 

I love the little pots of tea we got with our Afternoon Tea and you can’t quite beat a Traditional English Tea. 

The Good Loaf serves their Afternoon Tea between 2pm to 3.30pm Monday to Saturday and is for a minimum of 2 people. Pre-booking is required and costs £10 a head.

Read the review here 

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Rockingham Castle

Why not enjoy an Afternoon Tea surrounded by royal history in the grounds of Rockingham Castle? Stunning!

When we visited Rockingham Castle for the day, we were kindly gifted an Afternoon Tea which was situated in the Walkers House Tea Room – you can imagine the King’s and Queen’s sitting in here for their Afternoon Tea, sipping traditional English tea and biting into scones. 

Afternoon Tea is served surrounded by the castle’s picturesque and historic surroundings whilst you enjoy a selection of traditional finger sandwiches from cheese and pickle (my favourite!) to egg and cress and cucumber – all of which had plenty of filling that oozed with every bite.

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Ofcourse, we had homemade scones with clotted cream and local strawberry jam, along with a pot of English tea. It’s not Afternoon Tea without these staples.

We also had a selection of finger cakes including indulgent chocolate brownies with swirled white chocolate coated on top to give it a creamy consistency, victoria sponge and lemon cake.

Having Afternoon Tea in a castle was stupidly British and I was all for it!

Afternoon Tea at Rockingham Castle’s Walkers House Tea Room is served on their Open Days between 12pm – 5:30pm with last orders at 4:30pm.

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G&T’s Northampton

Have you ever had an Afternoon G&Tea? It’s the best type of Afternoon Tea as it includes my favourite alcoholic beverage = GIN!

Gin & Temple, also known as G&T, have seen a gap in the market in the town centre by providing a unique experience that is both laid back, tailored and full of good, locally sourced food by the Sandwich Bar on Bridge Street, Northampton, who are responsible for all the sweet and savoury treats.

G&T’s are clever in asking you exactly what you’re gin preference is, whether it’s a dry or flavoured gin and they give you a customised gin teapot to go with your afternoon tea, including garnish that they recommend goes with that particular gin. 

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They mix the traditional with the modern by combining homemade scones, cakes and sandwiches, to chicken skewers with chilli sauce, mini tartlets with brie and chutney and plenty of nibbly bits like crisps and fresh strawberries.

The environment is great for this concept and I can really see it making a huge hit in the town centre on weekend afternoons when people just want to get out and enjoy something quintessential.

G&T’s Afternoon Tea is launching THIS WEEK and I was very lucky to be one of the first to preview it – a review is coming very soon and all details on when it will be available will be coming soon.

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Fawsley Hall Hotel & Spa

It’s always a pleasure visiting Fawsley Hall as I love it’s remote, countryside location and having Afternoon Tea inside their Tudor Hall makes for a very pleasant experience. 

The Tudor Hall may be one of the grandest rooms held inside of Fawsley Hall, which many beautiful and historic features from the photos of famous Tudor faces, to the vintage decor, but it is also a very relaxing environment that it doesn’t matter what occasion you’re visiting for. 

At Fawsley Hall, I was gifted my first ever Vegan Afternoon Tea. Now, I’m not vegan whatsoever and haven’t ever really considered trying vegan food that much until recently, so it was interesting to try something different, plus for the purpose of this guide, it’s great that I am able to share my thoughts with those readers who may be vegan. 

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I hardly noticed a difference between the vegan and non-vegan afternoon tea. In fact, I felt as though the vegan afternoon tea was much lighter in comparison to the non-vegan. Although, I can’t deny that I do love a scone with plenty of clotted cream and jam on top!

Whatever occasion you visit for, or whatever dietary requirements you may have, Fawsley Hall are great at accommodating any of their Afternoon Tea listed on their menu to suit your needs.

Depending on what Afternoon Tea you opt for, prices may vary. We went for the Knightly Afternoon Tea with prosecco option, which costs £39.50 per person. You can also opt for a Champagne Afternoon Tea for £35.50 per person. However, if you’re just looking for the Knightly Afternoon Tea which doesn’t include the bubbles, that costs £25.50.

Read the review here.

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That’s my Afternoon Tea guide for Northamptonshire right there – all the experience above have been had by myself, as always, I never share places that I have not visited as I want to give you guys my 100% opinion. But my word, I’ve eaten A LOT of Afternoon Teas!

As like all my food guides, if I happen to visit any other Afternoon Tea spots, I’ll be sure to add it here.

Where have you been in Northamptonshire for Afternoon Tea?

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