The Parlour – Fortnum and Mason, W1A

Whether you favour an Earl Grey or a Rooibos, there’s something about being British that goes hand in hand with loving tea. And when I think of tea, there is nowhere on Earth more luxurious to experience it than Fortnum & Mason.

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Quintessentially British, this luxury department store was established in 1707 and still occupies the original headquarters in Piccadilly. It is renown for its premium homeware, candles, gourmet food hall and famous wicker picnic hampers which were first distributed at the Ascot races and Henley Regatta.

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I wandered to the first floor Parlour restaurant where I was meeting my friend and fellow blogger, Angie Silver (of SilverSpoon London). The ice cream Parlour at Fortnum & Mason looks as delicious as the items that appear on its menu. The walls are painted in candy pink and turquoise and you can watch the baristas create some seriously impressive concoctions at the 1950s-style bar.

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Angie and I had loads to catch up on – from blogging to upcoming travels. We ordered our coffees which arrived with the cutest miniature ice cream cones tucked on the side.

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The Parlour serves retro drinks and desserts with a modern F&M twist. Things to try on my next visit would be the refreshing cucumber and mint sorbet or the whimsical carrot shake with stem ginger. For the ultimate indulgence, you could try the Hansel and Gretel sundae – an entire gingerbread house filled with ice cream, chocolate sauce, sprinkles and sweets!

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I considered ordering a Knickerbocker glory (apparently Fortnum’s are the first establishment to serve them) but felt drawn to the Rose and Violet sundae – a floral mix of rose and violet ice cream, dried rose petals, candy floss, raspberry coulis and violet crystals. This was hands down the best and most beautiful ice-cream I have ever had.

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After our catch up over coffee and ice cream, I wandered back to the food hall downstairs and perused the aisles for loose leaf tea. I was in heaven.. There were row upon row of royal blends, green teas, fruit teas and so many scrumptious biscuits! With a complete loss of self-control, I ended up creating a bespoke picnic hamper with my shopping basket full of treats.

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Armed with my iconic Fortnum & Mason duck egg shopping bag, I exited feeling rejuvenated and truly happy.

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