I haven’t been to England in more than a decade so I am constantly wishing/hoping for a return trip there. How I’d love to visit the city of London during the spring or fall, snap pictures like crazy with my much fancier camera, and overall just enjoy everything that makes England such a fantastic country to visit. And having afternoon tea, my new favourite (the British spelling) pastime would be at the top of my list of things to do.
While contemplating unique things I could do on my recent trip home to Philadelphia, tea happened to come up. Earlier this year my mom had gone to a spot in Main Line Philadelphia (an area of one after the other affluent suburbs west of the city) for afternoon tea with some of her friends. The place is called A Taste of Britain so you know it was the real deal. In addition to the traditional tea that comes with all the bells and whistles (tea sandwiches, scones, sweets, and of course your own pot of tea), A Taste of Britain also has a section on the menu that’s solely devoted to British culinary favorites. So my mind was made up, off we went on my first afternoon there.
Located in the Eagle Village Shops in the town of Wayne, the spot is very cute (exactly what you’d expect of a quaint English village), but also very small. Reservations are highly suggested (you can either call or make them online which is what I did). The interior is lovingly decorated and is just the place where you’d love to stay secluded on a cold, wintry day or an absolutely overcast one (for me, the weather that day was the latter).
As I was going out to dinner late that night with an old friend, we just went for lunch, not the full tea service, which is $18 (for children the afternoon tea is either $12.95 for four pieces of goodies, or $16.95 for eight goodies, tea obviously comes with both). We did of course order some tea even though with the bevy of selections it was quite hard choosing. We ended up splitting a pot of the Lavender and Vanilla as it reminded me of my day at the lavender farm on Maui, although the Vanilla Cream Rooibos was my second pick. But they offer everything from herbal teas to decaffeniated to black to white to even a rooibos selection itself. A pot of tea for two costs $4.95.
I knew before going I wanted something from the English favorites section, it was just a matter of choosing which one. I debated between either the Welsh Rarebit ($9.50) which is something I’ve always wanted to try, or the Sausage Rolls ($10). I ended up going with the former since this dish is so quintessentially English. If you’re not familiar with it, Welsh Rarebit is basically “cheese toast” although it’s of the most rich variety. The cheese sauce is made with Guinness, Colman’s Mustard and egg and then broiled on bread. I did have the option of adding a side of baked beans or house salad for $4.50 but I didn’t want to spend that much on “just” baked beans. My portion was quite large so I think it would have been better if you were given one or two less pieces of bread and instead had a dollop of beans. I really enjoyed the taste of it though.
My mom opted for the Butternut Squash Salad ($10.50) which consisted of mixed greens with roasted butternut squash, crumbled goat cheese, and sugared pecans, served with spice maple vinaigrette salad dressing. I had a few pieces of the squash (something I love) and it was delicious.
And even though we probably shouldn’t have, we split the Lemon Posset ($6) for dessert which is a British specialty. The menu noted that its consistency is between a mousse and a pudding, and the tart and light taste of it was a perfect finale to our meal.
I loved my experience at A Taste of Britain and look forward to returning again.
A Taste of Britain is open Monday-Saturday, 10 AM-5 PM.
A Taste of Britain
Eagle Village Shops | 503 Lancaster Ave #420 | Wayne, Pennsylvania | 19087