In a nutshell
The Jungle Book afternoon tea at the sumptuous St James’ Court Hotel, A Taj Hotel offers a a selection of sandwiches, cakes and teas in a super-fancy hotel a stone’s throw away from Buckingham Palace, all themed around – you guessed it – The Jungle Book. Ooooh, what could be better?
What is it?
If you’re looking for something a bit different, this afternoon tea with an Indian twist is it. The tables are beautifully decorated to go along with the Jungle Book theme and you’ll sample classic sandwiches with some unusual flavours: smoked salmon bagel flavoured with spiced yoghurt, and a sultana coronation chicken wrap.
Puds include Mowgli’s Jungle pink guava & sweet basil jelly and Bandar log spiced banoffee with saffron cream. Yum!
We went as a group of 4 – mum, dad, daughter and grandma. This was really lovely as it suited every age, from young (4) to older (78).
There was lots to look at on the table and surrounding room and so plenty to keep our little one occupied (we weren’t offered crayons or paper etc but she just took time playing with the table decorations and enjoying feeling “grown up”) and grandma loved the ambience and sophistication of the restaurant.
One slight word of advice: I could tell from the offset my 4-year-old probably wasn’t going to go for much on the menu as the flavours were perhaps on the sophisticated side (though they might be fine for yours).
Luckily, when we asked for a plain cheese sandwich, the chef whipped one up with no questions asked and she wolfed it down.
The website advises Victoria for St James Park but – especially if you’re walking with little ones – I’d recommend St James’ Park as it is that bit nearer a walk from the Tube, and London streets can be exhausting for little legs.
What’s the tea room like?
It’s really beautiful, with stunning peacock mirrors on the walls, gilt and gold everywhere and a bathroom to covet.
The service was impeccable – the staff were friendly and helpful and the timing of the plates coming out was just right – we didn’t feel rushed but neither did we ever feel like we were waiting around for something to arrive.
And while the food was – as you’d expect with afternoon tea – little bits and bites – we all left feeling pretty full with no need for an evening meal later that day (we ate at 2pm).
£35 per person or £45 with Prosecco, served from 12pm to 5.30pm every day.
All in all, every one of us had a great time. It was something a bit different and a really lovely family occasion.
The best thing I can say is that later that evening my daughter asked if she could go again the next day – high praise indeed. We’ll definitely be returning – hopefully for the Alice in Wonderland option (yes, they do that too!)