You might feel that you’ve got your hands more than full running lunch and dinner service, but Anthony Demetre and Will Smith, the men behind Arbutus and Wild Honey, feel there’s a gap in the market – for afternoon tea.
Earlier this month, the two-times Michelin-starred pair launched afternoon tea at the Mayfair outpost, Wild Honey.
“It’s just at Wild Honey,” Will Smith tells us, adding that he doesn’t think afternoon tea is a Soho (read Arbutus) thing. But Smith’s thinking behind the concept was that people are often pushed for time and that a later, lighter offering might just do the trick.
The menu, called Sweet and Savoury, available from Monday to Friday from 3pm-6pm, includes a selection of Prosecco, Champagne and Champagne cocktails, savouries such as croque monsieur (ham, Gruyere and toasted sourdough), £5.95, a board of charcuterie (speck, finocchiona, coppa and five-year bellota), £12.95, and warm potato soup with chive cream, £5.50.
Batting for the sweets – which I sampled - are a beautifully light carrot and walnut cake with carrot jam, a not-so-light-but-gorgeous-nevertheless cream scone with clotted cream, strawberry and raspberry jam, and a stunning English pound cake with apple compote and Chantilly cream, all £6.95. In addition, there’s also a tart of the day such as treacle, chocolate or prune and Armagnac.
If you’re not seduced by the alcohol and Smith’s splendid wine list, then there is of course a selection of loose leaf teas or coffee at £3.25).
Co-owner and chef Anthony Demetre says that he believes eating out patterns are changing in London and that he and Smith regularly get customers who want to eat later and lighter. “They don’t necessarily want a traditional afternoon tea, but crave either a simple dish or a pudding treat when they meet clients, friends or colleagues mid-afternoon.” A treat indeed.