"The way to my heart is through my stomach".Whoever conjured this brilliantly accurate proverb was probably referring to food fanatics like me. Traveling = devouring everything within arms reach and subsequently and justifyingly walking it off. (Thanks Citymapper for including the calories I burn when walking to my destinations) No wonder why Europeans tend to stay skinny compared to us, "Umericans" who will literally drive down one block.
After excavating and endlessly thumbing through neverending Yelp reviews at 2am, I'd like to say I've become the master of afternoon teas in the London area--well, for a novice American tourist, that is. Decrypting sketchy Yelp reviews and abandoning my refined list of £ - ££ price list miraculously landed me to Bond & Brook.
Once Jeremy, Dionna and I maneuvered through the congested streets of Oxford Circus like Pac-man after a brisk escapade to probably THE biggest Topshop of mankind, we discovered the tucked away restaurant at Fendwick. Fendwick = a hybrid of Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue. Sidenote: Oxford street is pretty much the hub of tourists, so if you're already anxiety-prone and crowd-avoidant, this ain't the place to visit. Call it the Times Square of New York. (I'm making a lot of New York comparisons, I know).
Random note: The Oxford Circus Topshop even has Lola's Cupcakes, a
Boba Bubble Tea mini shop, and even a Tattoo & Piercing floor. Ya know, because why not get some high-waisted faded denim and a jumble of cartilage piercings to complete that low-key hipster look? *Sarcasm mode in full effect*
After attempting to maturely and importantly state my last name for my reserved table, we were all seated alongside champagne bottles and a bookcase of fashion coffee books. Listen, you know when a place is fancy if the floors are marble and the lamp looks like something straight out of a modern art museum.
So what did I get for my first-ever, bucket-list afternoon tea?
The Afternoon Tea á la Palace English Breakfast Tea, of course! (I only chose Palace because it sounds elegant. no shame.)
Freshly baked scones with "clotted" cream and homemade strawberry jam lovingly tucked inside a fabric blanket? Yes, please! *Cue the allusions to Tyra Banks ravenously inhaling slices of butter and steaming bread in Lifesize, the movie*
An array of delicate finger sandwiches and smoked salmon topped with caviar channeled my inner Marie Antoinette---minus the unsanitary, Marge Simpson-esque hair. I lost both my caviar and afternoon tea virginity so I'd like to think today was a pretty life-changing, eventful day when it comes to the daily life of Kelly Han and her cuisine endeavors. And the couture cakes? The name pretty much sums it up.
Anyone that thinks afternoon tea is light, is probably a world professional competitive eater. Tip: don't even lick a crumb before tackling on afternoon tea. You will leave with a 3-hour food coma and a smug smile of sheer happiness because of how happy your soul & stomach will be. It's that filling. It was even worth the secretive snickers of the waitresses behind my back when my blogger mode was activated and I snapped "artsy" shots while my tea was continuously getting cold. Come on, we all do it. It's like the silence before the storm. The storm of destroying your food, that is.