The Twelve Afternoon Teas of Christmas

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There are few things in life quite as luxuriant as lingering over a tower of pastries with a glass of Champagne in hand. As Christmas is all about indulgence it makes sense that the two should be combined to make something even better – Festive Afternoon Tea!

Take the ceremony of high tea and put bells on it – Christmas Afternoon Tea is a level up, the perfect excuse to get into the festive spirit and enjoy all your favourite baked treats without the hassle of flaming a pudding or rolling a Yule log yourself. Below is a collection of the most fabulous Festive Afternoon Teas from around the country, guaranteed to satisfy every sweet tooth and transport you to a Winter Wonderland. Dainty seasonal treats will let you embrace the festive cheer and season of deliciousness.

Dylan

There is no place quite like Dylan for a festive celebration, as the boutique five star space is transformed into a chic Christmas cocoon with wall to wall sparkle and whimsical winter decor. Dylan is a safe bet for a stunning afternoon tea at any time of the year, but Christmas Afternoon Tea at Dylan is extra special. Paired with one of the stunning Twelve Cocktails of Christmas, this is a stylish festive treat to remember.

Dylan’s Christmas Afternoon Tea is priced at €45 per person and can be enjoyed from 25th November until 8th January from 12 noon until 5pm every day.

The Park Kenmare

If it just doesn’t feel like Christmas without a roaring fire, The Park Kenmare is the perfect destination for your Festive Afternoon Tea, served in a classic Victorian dining room accompanied by the gentle tones of local Harpist Tara Viscardi. Traditional tea time treats will be given a Christmas twist with a buffet of festive cakes, puddings and treats to savour alongside a chilled flute of Taittinger Champagne. This is ultimate indulgence overlooking the postcard perfect glistening Kenmare Bay.

Festive Afternoon Tea at the Park Kenmare is priced at €50 per person and will be served on December 27th through to 31st inclusive.

Castlemartyr

In the stunning surroundings of Cork’s Castlemartyr Festive Afternoon Tea also includes an array of dainty finger sandwiches served on stylish Vera Wang china, including an inventive soft boiled quails egg and trout caviar creation served on squid ink bread. This will be followed by a tempting assortment of festive sweet treats such as Christmas pudding with brandy butter, praline éclair with sweet fondant icing and vanilla pannacotta with spiced plum and gingerbread crumble, accompanied by a glass of bubbly.

Lady Fitzgerald’s Festive Afternoon Tea at Castlemartyr Resort costs €32 per person, and there are also Coeliac and gluten-free choices available. Festive Afternoon Tea is available daily from 1.30 p.m. until 4.30 p.m. in the Bell Tower.

The Shelbourne

The Lord Mayor’s Lounge will be transformed into a cosy festive space with tranquil music of the resident pianist lulling you into the Christmas spirit. The Shelbourne’s festive Afternoon Tea is the perfect treat to unwind and recuperate after Christmas Shopping or to catch up with friends before the New Year. Enjoy a traditional taste of Christmas with the Shelbourne Sherry Trifle and Gingerbread Yule Log with Praline Ganache in fabulously opulent surroundings.

The Lord Mayor’s Lounge offers a Festive Afternoon Tea from €54 per person, from 23rd November to 1st January, served daily between 11.45am – 6.30pm.

Sheen Falls

The delectable special Christmas Afternoon Tea menu at stunning Sheen Falls offers a three-tiered feast of festive-inspired savoury and sweet treats. From Sheen Falls Home-Smoked Salmon Cones to Mini Spiced Beef Bagels, Mulled Wine Jelly to traditional Chocolate Yule Log, Chef Philip Brazil has carefully curated a menu that celebrates festive favourites and local ingredients for true Christmas indulgence.

Festive Afternoon Tea will be served in the Drawing Room at Sheen Falls from 2pm–5pm on Saturday December 3rd & 10th, Friday December 23rd and December 27th to January 1st inclusive and is priced at just €25 per person, including a glass of Prosecco.

Lough Erne

With beautiful views of Castle Hume Lough, Afternoon Tea at Lough Erne is enjoyed fireside, making it a perfect way to spend a snowy Northern afternoon. Lough Erne’s special Festive Afternoon Tea is served in the Garden Hall which will be decked to Christmas perfection. Enjoy seasonal treats and festive eats designed by chef Noel McMeel and his team and bring the little ones – Cygnet’s Afternoon Tea is also offered to get the whole family in the Christmas spirit.

Festive Afternoon Tea is priced from £24 person.

The g`

Christmas needn’t be all red and gold, as proven by The g with uber stylish technicolour festive decor inkeeping with the chic Philip Treacy design throughout the luxury property. Expect the same colourful feast for the eyes in their Festive Afternoon Tea, with an array of seasonal treats and Christmassy delights to savour in the Signature Lounge. Treat yourself to a handcrafted Christmas cocktail and lap up this stylish celebration of the season.

Festive Afternoon Tea at The g is available from 1st December 2016 – 8th January 2017 from 12.30pm and 3.30pm each day and costs €26.00 per person or €46.00 for two guests.

InterContinental Dublin

Ballsbridge’s magnificent InterContinental Hotel (formerly the Four Seasons) is perfect to escape winter chills and celebrate Christmas in Five Star style with Festive Afternoon Tea, served in the luxurious surroundings of the Lobby Lounge or the intimate, cosy Reading Room with an open fire. Savour delicious Christmas themed desserts and pastries alongside traditional scones and finger sandwiches for an indulgent festive treat.

Festive Afternoon Tea is served Monday to Friday, 2.00pm to 5.00pm and Saturday and Sunday from 1.00pm to 5.30pm and is available from 1-31 December.and is priced at €32 per person.

The Killarney Park Hotel 

There is a reason there is a Christmas Carol entitled ‘Christmas in Killarney’, it is always a magical place to be during the festive season and the ultimate treat to mark the arrival of Christmas is Festive Afternoon Tea in the Killarney Park Hotel. With a stunning drawing room and numerous fireplaces to cosy up to, Christmas afternoon tea includes Ronnefedlt teas and festive favourites like Turkey and Cranberry on Ciabatta and a Chestnut Cream Delight. This Christmas treat at the Killarney Park Hotel is sure to get you feeling like it’s a wonderful life.

Festive Afternoon Tea is offered at The Killarney Park Hotel from €32.50pp or €47.50pp with a glass of Ruinart Champagne.

The Merrion

Famous for it’s Art Afternoon Tea, expect the expert sugar craft and masterful chocolate work of Executive Pastry Chef Paul Kelly to result in a feast for the eyes in in The Merrion Festive Afternoon Tea. Gingerbread, Viennese bridge rolls, colourful meringue and mince pies are just some of the home-made delights on offer.  Festive Afternoon Tea will be accompanied by Christmas Carols on selected dates in December.

Festive Afternoon Tea is available from 1st to 31st December for €45 per person. On December 4th, 11th and 18th Afternoon Tea will be accompanied by festive Christmas Carols, priced at €55 person.

The Merchant

The most magnificent dining room on these shores, The Great Room at The Merchant, will be adorned with festive finery and a towering Christmas tree specked with gold to celebrate the arrival of the most wonderful time of the year. Make sweet Christmas memories to last a lifetime with The Merchant’s Festive Afternoon Tea, seasonally driven and steeped in grandeur and glamour with classic Christmas cake and perfect mince pies.

Festive Afternoon Tea at The Merchant is available from November 26th to January 1st for £26.50 per person from Monday to Wednesday and £32.50 per person from Thursday to Sunday.

The Westbury

If you dread the hectic ritual of Christmas shopping on Grafton Street, escape the chaos by stopping to take high tea in the beautiful Westbury Hotel.  A fantastically Festive Afternoon Tea awaits you here, think Chestnut Cheesecake with Matcha and Mandarin Tart with Mulled Wine Ganache, all served in the opulent 1st floor lounge with a bird’s eye view perfect for people watching.  The Westbury even has a dedicated Tea Sommelier, so you know Afternoon Tea here has to be on your must-try list.

Festive Afternoon Tea is served in The Westbury throughout the Christmas period and costs €47 per person.

Dromoland Castle

Last but not least, the magnificent Dromoland Castle is going all out to create a feast of Christmas classics for their Festive Afternoon Tea spectacular. Kicking off with mulled wine on arrival, guests will enjoy everything from turkey and stuffing wraps to stollen roulade to egg nog shots for a real taste of Christmas in a luxurious castle setting at the Earl of Thomond restaurant.

Festive Afternoon Tea is available at Dromoland Castle for the entire month of December and prices start at €36.

ARTICLE BY DARINA COFFEY

Darina CoffeyGrowing up with the name Darina, I was constantly asked if I could cook like my namesake. With that(and greed) as the ultimate motivator, I realised that baked goods make excellent bribes and an obsession was born! With bachelor’s and master’s degrees in law I undertook a PhD, but a preference for cookbooks to textbooks persisted. As a (self-confessed!) demon in the kitchen, I am the only person to have contested both Masterchef and the Great Irish Bake off, fuelling my desire to focus on food in a serious way. Working with TheTaste allows me to satisfy this craving and marries my food fascination with my love of writing and ranting.

Darina Coffey Darina Coffey

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