AFTERNOON TEA REVIEW: SKETCH LONDON, MAYFAIR
sketch was created by the popular French master chef Pierre Gagnaire and restaurateur Mazouz in December 2002, much to the delight of Londoners and visitors to the capital - a social media explosion was the result. Gagnaire has curated extraordinary menus throughout sketch, which is no surprise given that he also created a renowned Michelin three-starred restaurant in Paris.
I had the great pleasure of visiting sketch for a Champagne Afternoon Tea this month. sketch notoriously offers drinkers and diners several thrilling options for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and drinks and we are frequent visitors (certainly partial to a cocktail or several throughout the week). Shamefully, this was my very first time in the extremely Instagrammable sketch hot spot also known as The Gallery, designed by the great India Mahdavi and full to the brim with David Shrigley goodness. Thank heavens I can finally tick this off my Mayfair wish list.
After an initial glass of Pommery Brut Rosé champagne, the pastel-hued and friendly waiter suggested that we try fragrant jasmine pearl and rose bud teas in the spirit of near-February romance. sketch has the largest selection of teas I have ever seen on a single menu and there is no restriction on the amount of tea you wish to consume - absolutely perfect for spicing up an idle and rainy afternoon in the city.
Two starter plates promptly arrived at our table, each adorned with spoonful of caviar, skinny Comté cheese soldiers and a vibrant quail's egg. It is a joy to behold this magically surreal and artisanal spin on the classic British breakfast - pleasing on the eye and the taste buds.
The mood lighting in sketch allows you to peacefully drift away into a time-free haze of blissfulness as you graze on a show-stopping afternoon tea. The Shrigley illustrated stand features an impressive selection of finger sandwiches (pescatarianized upon request), wild cakes that would make Salvador Dali's face light up and a trendy knotted marshmallow lying playfully on the edge of the stand, just begging to be toyed with.
Championing personality and excellent quality, sketch continues to grow as a loveable hot spot for all - there is something for everyone to fall in love with. Following the afternoon tea stand, warm scones, cream and jam appeared. Not one to turn down tradition, I begrudgingly consumed my scone and ordered an Earl Grey to completed my experience. This is the best afternoon tea I have had in a very long time - you can expect comfortable chairs, wave upon wave of sensory pleasure, low lighting, delicious food and drink and a very memorable bathroom experience.
Top tip: Take your phone / camera with you!