The signature tea offering at Sanctum Soho, a boutique hotel secreted behind the fagade of two Georgian townhouses, is quite different to anything else in the capital, and could stand you in good stead as late lunch or early supper. No. 20 is a terrific venue full of vintage glamour with oak floors, a dazzling bar and gold leather banquette seating providing private enclaves in which to meet friends, discuss business or just party.
‘There is no trouble so great or grave that cannot be much diminished by a nice cup of tea.’ Bernard-Paul Heroux
Other than a steaming pot of tea, there is absolutely nothing traditional about the Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea, which is a carnivore’s dream from start to finish. For your first course, there are freshly prepared savouries including a rare beef sandwich, a poached oyster with bloody mary relish and a mini smoked salmon, caviar and watercress bagel. For the main course, expect the likes of a roast beef and horseradish stuffed miniature Yorkshire pudding, an individual lamb hotpot, as well as two other meaty treats. There is still dessert to follow, and if you want to move up to the fifth floor roof terrace to enjoy the twice-baked chocolate fudge cake with Jack Daniels ice cream, followed by a tankard of Jack Daniels’ Gentleman’s Jack, you’ll be in the right place to smoke the cigar which is part of the experience.
All is not lost if you happen to be accompanying a man to tea here, for the ladies can order ‘The English’ in advance. Love it or hate it, there are Marmite and watercress sandwiches amongst the selection served here, and if you really can’t be seduced by the freshly baked scones, clotted cream and Tiptree Little Scarlet jam, then there is another touch of nostalgia to tempt you – hot buttered crumpets.
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Sanctum Soho successfully blends tradition with cutting edge style, and the menus, especially the Gentleman’s Tea, are strikingly innovative.
Address: 20 Warwick Street, London W1B 5NF
Tel: +44 (0)20 7292 6102
Afternoon tea served: Monday to Sunday 3-5pm
Set teas: Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea (a traditional afternoon tea, ‘The English’, is also available must be ordered when booking]
Nearest underground station: Piccadilly Circus Places of interest nearby: Regent Street, Soho