Afternoon Tea Diaries: The Colonnades at the Signet Library

Edinburgh, UK


Best Afternoon Tea in Edinburgh? A Visit to The Colonnades

Dear afternoon tea, where do I begin? Those who know me, know my love for the rather indulgent meal. To me, it's the perfect blend of sweet and savoury, perhaps with a dash of nostalgia, as it's become a tradition for my mum and I to go for afternoon tea as a little treat.

If you've read my Edinburgh bucket list blog post, you'll know that the Colonnades has been top of my list of places to enjoy afternoon tea in Edinburgh for a while but somehow I've just never got around to it. However, I recently had the chance to cross it off my list as Sharon/Mrs Bite from Bite Magazine and I were kindly gifted an afternoon tea as part of a project I'm working on (looking forward to sharing more information soon), and it was simply divine.

As you can see from the photos I've included, the Colonnades at the Signet Library is an incredibly picturesque location to enjoy afternoon tea. We were seated in a little nook by a large window, and surrounded by beautiful old books. Being a big tea drinker, I always look forward to the part of the afternoon tea where I get to choose which tea will accompany my meal, and to my delight, the Colonnades allow you to choose several teas throughout your meal. Their tea menu consists of over twenty teas, supplied by the Wee Tea Company. Naturally, we had to start off with their exclusive Signet Library blend.

Once our tea orders were in, we started off our afternoon tea with an amuse-bouche, in this case it was a small portion of soup. Once we were finished, beautiful silver stands were carried out displaying our savoury treats - I've listed their current menu below. Being a vegetarian, my savouries slightly differed but were equally enjoyable. I've included a photo below (veggie version on the left), to show you that just as much care and attention to detail went into the vegetarian version.
Salmon, smoked haddock & saffron pie
Moroccan spiced lamb, couscous & tzatziki
Olive, rosemary & goats curd sable
Ham hock terrine & piccalilli
Mushroom & tarragon choux
Prawn Caesar salad Scottish salami, pesto & fennel baguette
Egg mayonnaise,tomato chutney & watercress

Now, for the most exciting round, in my opinion, the sweet treats. Both Mrs. Bite and I agreed that this was our favourite round and the most impressive too. There was a lovely combination of traditional sweets like carrot cake, as well as more modern interpretations like the green tea and lemon tart. The last tier, were four (albeit rather small) square scones accompanied by clotted cream and jam. However, after all that we had eaten, I'm not sure we could have managed the scone if they had been any bigger!
Passion fruit & coconut shot
Rhubarb & custard macaron
Green tea & lemon tart
Carrot cake
Banoffee delice
Dark chocolate ‘Alaska’

Sadly, we both had to dash off so we missed our last round, the elderflower sorbet, but I can imagine it would have just as delightful as the rest of the afternoon tea.

If you're interested in trying an afternoon tea at the Colonnades at the Signet Library, check out their website for more details. Each afternoon tea is around £38 per person.

Also, if you haven't heard of Bite Magazine, it's a wonderful free monthly food magazine. Sharon has written up a fantastic review, click here to read it.

That's all for now, hope everyone's having a delightful weekend x


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