To celebrate #BelgraviainBloom, I arrived at the stunning COMO The Halkin, and was greeted by a gorgeous tropical archway made from palms, banana and monster leaves and decorated with pretty silk butterflies, It was so colourful, vibrant and fabulous!
We walked through to the lobby, which also had a lovely display of colourful flowers. These were all in tune with this year’s Frida Kahlo theme for Belgravia in Bloom, and having seen some of her work in the Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City, I was particularly interested in all the floral displays.
I was excited to experience the Ametsa with Arzak Instruction Spanish Afternoon Tea, which is hosted in the Halkin bar and lounge. The offering is experienced by Basque cuisine and created by the Michelin-starred team at Ametsa, the Michelin starred restaurant at the hotel.
We decided to kick off our afternoon tea with a delicious and refreshing hat inspired cocktail called Flavia, inspired by Wimbledon and with the classic summer flavours of Pimms, lemonade, fresh fruit and ginger beer. The special summer cocktail menu is inspired by London’s summer social calendar,
from racing at Ascot to tennis at Wimbledon, and created in collaboration with Chelsea-based milliner, Jane Taylor London.
In lieu of the traditional sandwiches that you get with normal afternoon teas, we instead enjoyed a selection of Spanish style tapas as our warm savoury selection. It was all really scrumptious and we had Quail Egg on a Waffle, ‘Txangurro’ in a Shell Garlic Pintxo, a Tomato and Raspberry Soup. Iberico Ham Croquettes and a Txistorra Granary Sandwich. They were all really enjoyable and standouts for me were the Iberico Ham Croquettes, which were absolutely moreish, and as well as the Quail Egg on the mini waffle.
The desserts section is always the more exciting part for me as I am always intrigued by what the pastry chefs will create, and here it was superb. The sweet selection had a lovely variety and is probably one of the most novel sweet selections I have had at an afternoon tea.
We enjoyed a Mango Torrija Ametsa Cheesecake, a Passion Fruit Cake, a Catalan Cream, Smoked Pineapple served with theatrical charm, and a much loved Spanish classic, Chocolate with Churros.
They were beautifully presented and were delightfully decadent. The chocolate and churros was so good and I think it should be on every afternoon tea offering! To accompany our tea, we chose from the fabulous selection of JING Teas. I went for the herbal infusion of fresh ginger with honey, and it was a lovely light and complimentary tea to the sweet selection.
We thoroughly enjoyed the experience, and it was so unique and new to me, and I would definitely come back and have it all over again, especially the croquettes and the churros! If you are looking for a twist to the usual afternoon tea, I highly recommend this one with all its intriguing flavours and wonderful basque creations.
The Ametsa with Arzak Instruction afternoon tea is served from 2:30pm to 5:00pm in the Halkin Bar and Lounge. Prices start from £34 with a hat-inspired summer Cocktail, £40 with a glass of Cava and £48 with a glass of Taittinger Brut Resérve.
For more information you can visit their website here.