Just before Christmas, two of my friends and I decided to go for afternoon tea at The Hardwick Inn. We usually buy each other small gifts, but thought it might be nicer to spend the money on something that we could all do together. We hardly ever get to sit and chat so this seemed like a really nice idea.
We arrived at The Hardwick Inn (we’d perked for the occasion) and were quickly taken to our table. I was super-impressed as I was seated under a painting of Chatsworth! How did they know that was my other home? Ha!
When it was time for the afternoon tea to be brought out we realised that we hadn’t pre-warned the restaurant that one of our party was vegetarian. The staff were really accommodating and quickly rustled up some cheese and egg sandwiches just for her. I was really impressed anther services, but I was a little surprised that there had been no vegetarian options on the tea to begin with.
For the carnivores among us, there was a choice of turkey with cranberry sauce, chicken with stuffing, beef and horseradish and an open sandwich topped with a salmon mixture. The sandwiches weren’t particularly fancy, but they were tasty and very generously sized.
There was the obligatory scone, cream and jam which was delicious. The assortment of sweets was very impressive. Each person had two portions of flapjack, two mince pies, a mini trifle, a meringue filled with cream and a slice of Christmas cake.
I’m not going to lie, we were all complete floored by the amount of food and there was no way we could finish it all! Luckily, they were happy to give us a little box to take home any leftovers, which was much appreciated by Mr Mess.
During the afternoon tea we were regularly topped up with tea, which was lucky as Amanda drinks A LOT of tea! I did miss being given a choice of tea ( I do love my Earl Grey) but beggars can’t be choosers.
The whole tea cost just £10 each and we all agreed it was terrific value! Spending time together and having a good catch-up was far more valuable than any present could have been. We’ve all said we’d definitely like to do something similar next year and would certainly consider returning to The Hardwick Inn when the time comes.