What's better than a traditional afternoon tea, with warm scones, homemade jam and fresh cake? Afternoon tea delivered to your door, that's what. These London restaurants and bakeries now offer afternoon tea delivery service, so you don't even need to get dressed to get hold of the goods.
Cutter & Squidge afternoon tea delivery
When London went into lockdown, independent bakery Cutter & Squidge was one of the first places to pivot towards home delivery, first with luxury Easter eggs, and then with its afternoon tea.
We confess to having indulged twice during lockdown, and were left stuffed and very happy both times. Tea for two includes four scones (warm them in the microwave before tucking in), two pots of clotted cream, a pot of top-notch homemade jam, four pieces of cake, and a packet of tea. Understandably, it's not got the theatricality to it that Cutter & Squidge's in-house afternoon tea offers, but for an at-home alternative, it's a solid, good value option — though note that if you're doing things properly, you'll have to provide your own sarnies.
Delivery area: UK wide. £6-£10 delivery charge (shorter delivery slots available in London only).
Brigit's Bakery afternoon tea delivery
Better known for its afternoon tea bus tours, Brigit's Bakery takes the idea of meals on wheels further by delivering afternoon tea to your home or office.
It's more of a professional catering service than something to satisfy your cake-based whims — though you can order with a minimum of four people. This is traditional afternoon tea with a French twist — think finger sandwiches, delicate cakes and pastries, and freshly baked scones. Vegan, veggie, halal and gluten-free options are available, as well as a Peppa Pig iteration for little ones (ideal if your kid's got a lockdown birthday coming up).
Afternoon tea, delivered by Brigit's Bakery. From £19 per person, though the minimum order is for four people.
Delivery area: Delivery to WC2 is £10, Central London £20, and Greater London upon request.
Betty Blythe afternoon tea delivery
One of London's best kept secrets, Betty Blythe tea rooms in Hammersmith offers its traditional afternoon tea menu, delivered to your home (or office) in the form of its excellently-named Cakeaway menu.
You'll need a minimum of four people (max 200!) to order, and Betty Blythe will also loan you the crockery and linen if you need it, making it ideal for a birthday party or baby shower situation.
Sandwich choices include cheddar cheese and chutney, and cucumber and cream cheese, with French macarons and Victoria sponge among the cake choices. Gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan options are available
Betty Blythe afternoon tea delivery. Prices vary.
Delivery area: Within London. Price quote on application.
The Chesterfield Mayfair's sweetshop afternoon tea
Inspired by the old-fashioned confectionary of Hardy's Original Sweetshop, this supremely sugary afternoon tea includes a liquorice allsort raspberry cheesecake, a coca-cola bottle slice and, perhaps most intriguingly, a drumstick lolly-flavoured macaron. There are savoury options too, of course, and you can even add a bottle of champagne to your order, but the pastries are the real draw here, particularly if you've found yourself pining for the pick and mix section in lockdown.
The Chesterfield Mayfair's sweetshop afternoon tea. From £47 for adults, or £21.50 for children.
Delivery area: Delivers with Zones 1-4 for an additional fee. Collection from the hotel is also available.
Fortnum & Mason afternoon tea hamper delivery
As with all things Fortnum, this is an absolute top-of-the-range, splash-the-cash, have-the-butler-call-the-chauffeur option. £500 is what the Fortnum's afternoon tea hamper will set you back. For that, you receive one of Fortnum's iconic wicker hampers, filled with a selection of goodies from the Queen's grocer, including preserves, cakes, and an "arsenal of biscuits" — oh, and the suggestion that you "could even hire a resident pianist, if you are truly committed".
Teas come in keepsake wooden caddies, and you even get a tea timer and art deco strainer to ensure your brew is top-notch. Not flash enough? Upgrade to the Monarch Hamper, priced at £750 (though, alas, currently sold out), or the Windsor Hamper (a cool grand — though it does include caviar).
Fortnum & Mason afternoon tea hamper. From £500.
Delivery area: Can be delivered across England, Wales and Scotland. Can't be delivered to Northern Ireland, EU countries and certain other countries.
Kettle and Crumb afternoon tea hamper delivery
We can vouch for the sprawling lavishness of the afternoon tea hampers from Kettle and Crumb — traditional, unfussy, and with enough snacks, cakes and sandwiches that it'll probably stretch to cover the next day's coffee break quite nicely.
The afternoon tea hamper for two includes five rounds of sandwiches each, slices of quiche, three different sets of sausage rolls, scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam, and a crammed tray of cake — lemon, carrot cake, and brownies. And some tea, obvs. A generously-sized and very meaty affair, but Kettle and Crumb do offer a vegetarian and a vegan alternative — and in a nice touch, all of their afternoon tea deliveries are available for solo diners as well as for two people, so you can order to separate households for Zoom celebrations, treat a loved one in a single household (or... you know, yourself), or mix and match orders of the meat and vegan options.
Kettle and Crumb afternoon tea hamper, £49.50 for two (or £35 for one). Veggie and vegan options also available.
Delivery area: nationwide.
Ladurée cream tea delivery
As you'd expect from French macaron specialists Ladurée, afternoon tea is a rather delicate affair. In fact, it's more of a cream tea, skipping the sarnies and consisting of two scones, two macarons, and a mini jar of jam per person, all beautifully packaged in Ladurée's signature pastel boxes. Plus, it's available for one, if you're looking for a gift for someone living alone — or you just fancy treating yourself.
Ladurée cream tea delivery, £14 for one/£26 for two.
Delivery area: Available for store collection, London delivery or nationwide courier.
Colette's afternoon tea hampers
South-west London mini-chain Colette offers high-end afternoon tea hampers. Delivered in a traditional wicker hamper, the items inside include lemon drizzle cake, hazelnut cake, Lamington cake, homemade fruit scones with clotted cream, and savouries such as crayfish on brioche and smoked salmon and cream cheese on sourdough.
They love a hamper at Colette — at various times of the year, Christmas hampers, picnic hampers and all manner of other hampers are available, but the afternoon tea one is available year-round.
Afternoon tea hampers, £125 for two people, or £180 for four people.
Delivery area: London courier delivery for £12.95. Or collect your hamper from the Wimbledon or Fulham branches.