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afternoon tea cotswolds

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Best Places to Enjoy Afternoon Tea in the Cotswolds

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With Mother’s Day and lighter evenings approaching, you may be thinking about organising a special treat for family or friends, and in many cases, this can involve the quintessentially English pastime of enjoying a spot of Afternoon Tea.

The long-standing tradition began at Woburn Abbey in the mid-1800s when the Duchess of Bedford desired a delicious afternoon snack, and when Queen Victoria began to engage in the ritual, it became a regular formal occasion to be enjoyed by those belonging to the upper echelons of society. 

The “tea receptions” as they were known, hosted over one hundred guests between 4 and 7pm, and today, across the UK, charming tearooms continue the tradition, serving homemade cakes, savoury finger sandwiches and a host of beverages.

If you’re searching for a traditional and atmospheric establishment, take a look at our list of the best places to enjoy afternoon tea in the Cotswolds for inspiration. 

Lucy’s Tearoom – Stow-on-the-Wold

Lucy’s Tearoom in the picturesque Cotswolds town of Stow-on-the-Wold isn’t just a tearoom, it’s also a delightful Bed & Breakfast. 

Set inside a Grade 2 listed building, the 300-year-old tearoom is a popular spot for both locals and tourists, serving hearty breakfasts, lunches and afternoon tea. Adorned with exposed wooden beams and a flagstone floor, it’s an atmospheric and welcoming cafe – the perfect place for a special treat. 

Try their Stow Afternoon Tea served on a tiered stand with finger sandwiches (vegan options available), scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream and a choice of homemade cakes, accompanied by speciality loose leaf teas or a cup of coffee. 

Lavender Bakehouse and Coffee Shop – Chalford

The Lavender Bakehouse in Chalford near Stroud has, in its previous lives, been a Coop, a cabinet making workshop, a florist and a gift shop! Today, it is light and airy, decorated with dazzling chandeliers, a wall mural and there’s a gift shop upstairs selling local crafts.

Their ethos is all about serving local produce, meats are sourced from regional farms and their double Gloucester cheese comes from nearby Godsell’s dairy. Cakes and pastries are freshly baked using traditional recipes blended with an innovative twist to create new flavours.

Special Afternoon Teas are on the menu at certain times of the year, and the tables are always laid with the finest china tea sets, cake stands and vintage platters. 

A typical service will include finger sandwiches, cheese and chive scones, sweet mini scones with jam and clotted cream and a miniature selection of scrumptious homemade cakes.

The Cotswolds Tearoom – Moreton-in-Marsh

This small family run tearoom in Moreton-in-Marsh is well-known locally for its coffee, serving the finest unique blend of Brazilian and Guatemalan beans with a sweet, nutty depth of flavour. The beans are 100% Rainforest Alliance certified, but if you’re not a coffee drinker they also cater to tea lovers with a special blend called Smuggler’s Brew from Cornwall. 

However, it’s their cream teas that many come here to sample. Choose from either a sweet scone with jam and cream or savoury cheese scones with homemade onion chutney and a plethora of scrumptious cakes. 

They cater to dietary requirements and all baked goods can be made gluten free on request.

If you’re planning to host a party or celebration, the tearoom can also be booked exclusively to make the event even more memorable.

Tisanes Tearooms – Broadway 

Tucked away inside a 17th century Cotswold stone building on Lower High Street, Broadway, Tisanes Tearoom is a pleasant, welcoming establishment where customers can relax and enjoy delicious treats and purchase homemade preserves, jellies, curds, jams, chutneys and fudge in one place! 

With over 40 leaf teas and coffees and a host of Afternoon Tea treats, visitors can enjoy platters stacked high with sandwiches, scones and cakes. The freshly prepared sandwiches fillings are chosen by you from an extensive menu and there are a selection of gluten free breads and scones available. 

On spring and summer afternoons, it’s possible to dine alfresco in the pretty village garden, where you can soak up the sun whilst sampling traditional Cotswold’s fare.

There are many other wonderful tearooms in the Cotswolds, and our list is by no means extensive, therefore, if you think we’ve missed somewhere special, please let us know!

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