There can be no better place to celebrate a 30th birthday than having afternoon tea with friends and family at Bettys in the centre of York.
From the outside, Bettys is simply gorgeous. It’s grand, traditional and looks absolutely magical – and there’s always a huge queue of people outside to prove it.
Today we were situated in the Belmont Room, Bettys upstairs tea room, reserved exclusively for their finest afternoon tea. There’s even a side entrance, solely for this room, just to make you feel extra special – like celebs of Afternoon Tea.
The Belmont Room transports you back to an age of tradition and sophistication with gorgeous wooden panelled walls, huge beautiful windows and perfect white tablecloths and napkins.
Setting the scene even more was a delightful pianist!
Everything is very light and airy with honey coloured finishes and woven furniture – lovely.
Getting ourselves off to a good start, we began with a glass of champagne each (or Luscombe Elderflower Bubbly for some) which went down very nicely, followed by a huge choice of teas including some of Betty’s own unique blends. I chose jasmine blossom green tea, which hit the spot perfectly and then you can purchase some downstairs!
First things first, we started with a yummy range of finger sandwiches and it was good to know these could be topped up should we find ourselves not too full. These were; chicken and tarragon, Scottish smoked salmon, ham and honey mustard and egg mayonnaise. My favourite was the chicken as I loved the textured loaf and the filling was gorgeously creamy.
To follow we had two mini scones with jam and cream. The size was just right which left us with plenty of room for the fabulous cakes that were to follow.
And fabulous they were. Topped with the proud Bettys logo and laced with fruity, chocolaty goodness, these desserts were almost too good to eat. The cakes we could not manage were given to us in cake boxes to take home.
My daughter had a large fondant fancy, complete with candle, and a chorus of happy birthday accompanied by the pianist!
Bettys has been going strong since 1919, it’s not just about good cake and tea, it’s a wonderful experience for a celebration at any time, but a lovely event for my daughters 30th birthday.
A little history of Bettys:
In 1936 the founder of Bettys, Frederick Belmont, travelled on the maiden voyage of the Queen Mary. He was so enthralled by the splendour of the ship that he commissioned the Queen Mary’s designers and craftsmen to turn a dilapidated furniture store into his most sophisticated branch yet – an elegant café in the land locked location of St Helen’s Square. Today as you sit in Bettys, you can almost imagine yourself aboard a luxury liner.
A few years after Bettys opened its doors in York, war broke out, and Bettys in particular the basement ‘Bettys bar’ – became a favourite haunt of thousands of airmen stationed around York.
‘Bettys Mirror’, on which many of them engraved their signatures with a diamond pen, remains on display today as a fitting tribute to their bravery.