Everyone who lives in Newmarket knows of the Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spa. It's a luxurious hotel which sits on the outskirts of the Suffolk horseracing town and I've always wanted to stay there and visit their spa. I've also been desperate to try their afternoon tea so when I was invited down to review their full afternoon tea, I couldn't wait for an indulgent afternoon of sandwiches, scones, tea and cake.
To start, we were served three sets of perfectly cut sandwiches with classic fillings; smoked salmon, egg and cress and Suffolk ham. They were decently sized sandwiches (no skimping on the portions here) and a great start to the afternoon tea. I normally find that the sandwiches are often the weakest part of an afternoon tea but these were well presented, classic and tasty.
The scones were the standout part of the afternoon tea and honestly unlike any scones I’ve ever tasted. Almost like a teacake, the scones were so light and fluffy and you could choose fruit, no fruit or a mixture of both. We both received two giant scones each with a dollop of double cream, jam and homemade lemon curd. The lemon curd was a little different to the usual jam and cream and it was zingy, fresh and utterly delicious.
Finally, although we barely had room for any of it, we were served a plate of sweet treats, including a layered parfait, some slices of walnut and lemon cake, macarons and a miniature key lime pie. The mini key lime pie was my favourite but I also enjoyed the tiny chocolate macaron to finish the afternoon tea on an indulgent note. If I'm totally honest, the final plate was a little much for us both and we struggled to finish - I clearly need to work on my afternoon tea stomach!
Throughout the afternoon, the service was impeccable. We were kept topped up with an endless supply of Earl Grey tea and our waitress was attentive, yet left us to talk without us feeling like we were being watched. It was the perfect balance of service, as you would expect from the Bedford Lodge, and we felt so welcome and pampered. For me, afternoon tea is as much an experience as a meal so I can't wait to return
The Bedford Lodge afternoon tea is better value than you might think; £18.50 per person which is really impressive given the location and level of service. We’re already planning a trip back to try the cream tea or one of their special limited menus.