It’s that time of year when London is fully in bloom with the arrival of the annual RHS Chelsea Flower Show. One of my favourite restaurants in my favourite building, Aqua Shard, have launched a Floral Five menu in honour of the Chelsea Flower Show in collaboration with Camellia’s Teahouse, and on the menu you can enjoy an incredible selection ranging from five cocktails, five desserts and five different teas, which are all inspired from iconic British flowers.
I was invited to a preview of this delectable menu and our afternoon kicked off with a tea tasting with the jaw dropping views of London as a backdrop.
Amanda, a Certified ITEI Tea Sommelier, explained each of the five teas to us, and told us their health benefits, as well as taught us the correct way to enjoy a cup of tea (hint lots of slurping involved). She also passed around the fresh tea for us to have a sniff, just to get all our senses going.
The five teas we tried were a Blue Mallow Blend, which was a medley of Black tea, rose petals, rose hip and blue mallow flowers, an Elderflower Blend, which was Chickweed, red clover, elderflower, nettle, dandelion, marigold, chamomile and rose buds, a Lavender Blend, which was Black tea, lavender, rose petal and bergamot, a Marigold Blend, which was Green tea with lemongrass, marigold and lemon peel, and finally a Rosebud Blend, which was Rosebud, ginger and liquorice.
The fantastic thing about the tasting was that it opened up my mind to trying different teas especially the ones with ingredients I hadn’t heard of before or could not imagine how the taste might be. I was pleasantly surprised with all the teas we tried and my favourite was the Elderflower Blend.
Taking the afternoon up a notch we then embarked on a cocktail tasting session trying five fabulously floral cocktails. If you’ve tried cocktails at Aqua Shard before you’ll know just how creative and innovative they are, and this selection was once again just incredible, using each of the five tea blends as an ingredient.
They were all just amazing but my two favourites was Solstice Spritz, as I loved it’s theatrical presentation, and the Rosy fever, which was so delicious and perhaps dangerously too easy to drink!
It was then the indulgent part of the afternoon where we devoured five different desserts which are perfectly paired with each of the five teas.
Starting with a Dark Chocolate Mousse with lavender ice cream, just so dreamy!
Next up was an Elderflower Panna Cotta with the absolute perfect texture.
Raspberry and rose shortcake was summer on a plate!
Ginger cake with liquorice ice cream was the perfect size for a slice of heaven.
Finally, my favourite, Lime posset green tea sorbet, which was Lime posset topped with lemongrass granita, green tea sorbet, candied lemon and black sesame brittle.
I had an incredible afternoon and so a big thank you to Aqua Shard for their kind invitation to experience this dreamy menu! It will be available throughout summer and so make sure you try it out and if you do, let me know what was your favourite from the menu!
The cocktails are £18 each, the Desserts £9 and the teas are £5.50.
To find out more about Aqua Shard visit their website here: https://aquashard.co.uk/