The Walpole Bay Hotel in Cliftonville is not necessarily an iconic hotel but one that has been in situ for over 100 years. If you didn't know about it you'd walk in by. The hotel has a wonderful floral entrance with seating on the veranda which is actually very beautiful and extremely welcoming.
As you step inside though, you step back in time. There is a lot to see in the museum that has somehow encompassed the rest of the hotel with its memorabilia. With 1920s music playing in the back ground and food and drink served in either fine China or silver service you really are taking right back in time.
The Walpole offers a small menu with a variety of different sandwiches and cakes along with Cream Tea and ‘Walpole Cream Tea, Cakes and Sandwiches’ (aka afternoon tea). Prices start from £7.95 with Afternoon Tea coming in at a relatively reasonable £18.50 a head.
There are a choice of teas and coffees, however for me, you can’t have afternoon tea with anything but standard English breakfast tea. Bagged tea was brought over to the table in a silver tea pot, of which, we later requested a top up and was given at no extra charge.
When the food arrived, we were quite shocked to see the sandwiches surrounded by a large salad and crisps, a nice addition that you do not usually see these days.
Sandwiches consisted of; Egg Mayo, Ham and Mustard, Salmon and Cream Cheese and Cucumber and cream cheese.
The bread was extremely fresh and sandwiches very light and full of flavor.
The scones were lovely and warm and served with a pot of butter, jam and cream each. I hate having to share the cream, I like to know I can lather it on thick without having to accommodate another person’s portion. The scones were beautifully fresh and relatively large.
The last tier to be completely demolished was the cake tier which comprised of a small lemon drizzle cake and a chocolate brownie. Although only two cakes, with the addition of salad, crisps and a large scone it was a struggle to finish both cakes. We were completely full and content.
Although the staff could have been a little more attentive considering there was very little custom it was a truly lovely setting and a really scrumptious afternoon tea.
Venue Setting: 4/5
Quality of food: 4.5/5
Overall value: 4/5
Things to note: on a Sunday a pianist plays from 3pm.