10 In Food & Recipes/ Scotland

Afternoon Tea at the Signet Library | Edinburgh

When I helped a fellow Canadian with the preparation for her spouse visa earlier this year, her and her partner were absolutely lovely and sent us a voucher for an afternoon tea for two at the Colonnades at the Signet Library in Edinburgh. What a treat it was!

On Sunday a few weeks back, we headed into Edinburgh for a free film at the international film festival (thanks to my job there) and continued our free day out in Edinburgh with a free afternoon tea at the Signet Library. 

The Signet Library is a secret gem. It’s hidden just behind St Giles Cathedral, we actually struggled to find it because it’s not really signed. We arrived a little bit early, but there was no problem, our table was ready. They seated us at a private table in a bookshelf nook near a window. I already loved the atmosphere so much!

We were quickly welcomed and explained how afternoon tea at the Colonnades works. It’s usually a set menu, so need only to pick a tea. The Brit picked the Russian Caravan tea, and unfortunately had a bit of an allergic reaction to it, so we ended up sharing my tea, which was Assam. It was impeccable!

We were first served a warm tomato and basil soup, which was lovely!

It was followed by the savoury tray. I had ordered a pescatarian afternoon tea, and thankfully they catered really well to it. It was delicious and contained my favourite item of the day, the red pepper polenta. There was also a cheese pastry twirl, a crab tartlet, and little dainty finger sandwiches. 

It was followed by the sweet tray and it was fantastic. I was curious as to why we had different trays but we quickly realised that the Brit’s sweet tray contained quite a few jelly items which probably contained gelatine. We both especially loved the chocolate flower pot. I also loved their scones – they were delicious!

Finally, as we were too full to even move, we got served a lovely little palate cleanser, which is a little sorbet that lightens up the appetite. Perfect way to end the afternoon tea!

For the food I definitely give a 4 stars out of 5. It was delicious – though their macarons were a bit pasty. 

The atmosphere was fantastic. It wasn’t too crowded as they seemed to really stagger their afternoon teas really well and allow a lot of spaces for tables. We were there for about 2 hours and there was no rush. It was pleasant and the bathrooms were amazing.

Afternoon tea is priced at £30 per person (will go up to £32pp in August). It’s served Monday to Friday from 1 to 5pm and Sundays 11am to 5pm.

What’s your favourite item in an afternoon tea?xx

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  • Afternoon tea is one of my absolute favourite things, especially when it’s all fancy like this one. I love each aspect, but the mini puddings and cakes are the best bit!! 😉 Alice xxx


    • Yes me too! I do love a good scone with clotted cream 😀 I went to an afternoon tea once and they didn’t serve clotted cream…disappointment!

  • How scrumptious! And what a thoughtful present – it’s always great to be gifted experiences that you’ll always remember and this one looks positively delicious! 😀

    • Exactly! I love receiving little gifts like that, they always go to my heart too! Like it means so much 🙂

  • The tea looks nice but the building is stunning! x

    • I loved the building! The whole time I was like ‘should we get married here?’ haha love the idea of a library 🙂

  • That’s a great way of saying thank you to someone. That afternoon tea looks really good! And fairly well priced too (compared to London anyway…). It looks like you got a good selection of things, and what a lovely setting.

    • haha actually this is one of the most expensive I’ve gone too! But it seemed well worth the money, honestly it was delicious!

  • This sounds like a good idea for a gift, and a good idea on how to spend your afternoon!