Monday, 2 February 2015

Starters Afternoon Tea Review in Middlesbrough

2014 was the year of the afternoon tea. I think I must have had at least one a month which I definitely didn't complain about. I tried out Betty's Tea Rooms in Northallerton, Let There Be Crumbs in Sunderland and The Vermont Hotel in Newcastle

This year I thought I might try more afternoon tea venues in Teesside rather than venturing elsewhere! The Gazette (our local paper) put together a list of the top 10 places to get afternoon tea in Teesside and me and my mum have decided to try and visit them all. First up was Starters as it is right next door to the cinema and we were off to see In to the Woods.

Starters is a restaurant located in Middlesbrough which previously had another restaurant in Yarm. The idea is that they sell starter size portions of food so that you are able to pick a few. A bit like tapas but better as you can get the Teesside local cuisine of parmo! I'm not sure when Starters began doing afternoon tea as it was a surprise to see them on the top 10 list.

We decided we'd try Starters' afternoon tea after visiting Cineworld to see a film. We were quickly seated and brought our pots of tea.  I'm quite a fan of a strong tea, my favourite being Yorkshire Tea, but this was quite bland and the pots were very small. With an afternoon tea I like to have unlimited tea, so it was unfortunate that when we asked for more we were presented again with another small teapot which I had to pay extra for.

Afternoon Tea, Starters Middlesbrough Review, Teesside

Afternoon Tea, Starters Middlesbrough Review, Teesside

Afternoon Tea, Starters Middlesbrough Review, Teesside

Afternoon Tea, Starters Middlesbrough Review, Teesside

Afternoon Tea, Starters Middlesbrough Review, Teesside

When we were eventually brought our stand, after around 20 minutes of waiting, we were pleasantly surprised by the look of all the food. I was very excited to tuck in and started with the sandwiches of which there was a selection of ham, prawn mayonnaise, coronation chicken and cheese savoury. They were all really nice and I quickly moved on to my fruit scone. This had been warmed up, so was deliciously squishy. I had mine, like I always do, with butter and jam and it was very yummy.

It was then on to the dessert plate which seemed full of different treats. We weren't made aware of what everything was so we had to guess, taste testing along the way. As we were quite full from the other two plates we took a few of the cakes home. They were all okay but none of them stood out which was a shame as they looked so good.

Overall for £10.95pp I would say this is a good afternoon tea. I enjoyed the different selection of sandwich fillings, no egg & cress, cucumber or salmon sandwiches which can get boring.  The scone was very lovely, not crumbly and dry like some I've had, and the dessert plate was brilliantly presented. Having said that we've had much better in other venues in terms of amount of tea served (we need lots of tea!), taste of desserts and better sandwiches.

Have you visited Starters for afternoon tea? What did you think?
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