Afternoon Tea in Dublin at the Shelbourne Hotel
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Dublin is not London and it is not New York but the city is really vibrant from an enogastronomic point of view also because of the presence of so many foreigners. New restaurants often open in the city centre and many old places try to stay aligned with the new “epoque” changing themselves to adjust to the new requests from people. But there are still a lot of “old generation style” places where you can feel the real irish essence and one of these places is surely the Shelbourne Hotel, an elegant and well-known hotel in the center of Dublin which has always been connected with the political and cultural life of the city. You can book a room at the Shelbourne, go to an event or a party in there but for sure one of the most enjoyable experience is the famous afternoon tea which takes place every day between 1.30pm and 5.30pm consisting of savory snacks and many many sweet threats watered with champagne and/or with coffee and tea.
The afternoon tea starts with a series of open sandwiches that vary depending on the season and, of course, include some of the key ingredients of the irish cuisine including salmon, goat cheese and Guinness bread but the highlight are the desserts served on cake stands based on the number of people at the table; the lower floor of the cake stand is filled with scones and irish brack served with clotted cream, butter and jam while the upper floors are dedicated to individual guests and consist of four cakes per floor. Even in this case, apart from the lower floor, cakes change seasonally and they can be changed in case of allergies or intolerances.
You can order different types of tea or coffee to accompany your afternoon tea; the price starts from 35€ per person which is definitely not cheap but worth the splurge for a real irish food experience. The atmosphere is very quiet as the afternoon tea at the Shelbourne is attended by different types of people: tourists, Dubliners (retired and not), workers, recruiters, business-people, friends and even families. Special dress is not required but avoiding sneakers is not a bad idea.
The proof of this amazing experience is this very amateur video I want to share to make you see what I’m talking about; enjoy it, there is still a lot of work to be done on my videos but I hope I will get there with a little bit of practice. And if you happen to be in Dublin I really recommend not to miss a beautiful afternoon tea at the Shelbourne:
(Photos copyright by Giuseppe Milo)