Royal Ascot’s Afternoon Tea

The origins of Afternoon Tea in Britain can be traced back to the early 19th Century and is a tradition enjoyed to this day, none more so than at Royal Ascot.

To make the occasion even more special, we have partnered with tea connoisseur Henrietta Lovell and her Rare Tea Company, to create an exclusive blend for Royal Ascot

The Rare Tea Company supplies bespoke tea blends to the best restaurants around the world, including Noma, Claridges’s and Momofuku, while also selling teas online and via Waitrose and Selfridges.

“People who want ethically sourced, finest quality, really good tea come to me,” explains Henrietta.

It is no exaggeration to say that Henrietta Lovell is an expert on tea, flitting effortlessly from chronicling the history of the world’s favourite drink to listing exotic names of leaves and the processes involved in harvesting.

She is motivated by her desire to start a revolution and get people back to the quality that was once standard.

“Tea was the most important thing on the tea table – it was more valuable than champagne or even gold. The lady of the house would keep the key to the tea chest on her belt at all times, it was that precious.”

Henrietta is not only trying to start a trend towards better –quality tea, but also towards ethically sourced tea. She travels around the world sourcing the tea directly from farmers who use substantial practices that benefit both the land and the people who live and work on it.

Now she has created the bespoke Ascot blend for Royal Ascot’s afternoon tea. How did they arrive at the perfect blend? “Like food and wine matching, we looked at each dish in the afternoon tea and worked backwards and forwards until we were sure the flavours were perfect.”

“My tea at Royal Ascot is delicate and elegant – prepared with water at the right temperature and the correct tea-to-water ratio. You wouldn’t expect to find instant coffee at Royal Ascot; nor would you expect a teabag!”

The Royal Ascot blend is a secret, but Henrietta divulged that it has some Darjeeling with a lovely – and very expensive – Chinese tea as the tour de force, adding an “exquisite caramel note”.

Afternoon tea can be enjoyed as part of any Fine Dining or Private Box package.

Royal Enclosure members and Grandstand ticket holders can also pre-book Afternoon Tea, with prices starting from £25 per person. Please email restaurants@ascot.co.uk or call 0844 346 3622 to book.

For more information and to secure your place at Royal Ascot please click here