Valentines Afternoon Tea at The Caledonian Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh

Oh my, was I excited to finally visit the Waldorf Astoria here in Edinburgh for their Valentines afternoon tea?!

The lovely Viktorija had an extra space for tea so kindly asked if I wanted to come along and as I’ve both never set foot inside this building and also heard such great things about their food I definitely could not resist.

It definitely lived up to my expectations, so let me tell you all about it!

When we were visiting they had a limited Valentine’s Day themed afternoon tea on the menu, but the hotel changes their theme several time throughout the year. I always think themes are fun when it comes to afternoon tea as that makes me even more curious to come back an experience something new.

The Sandwiches

After picking teas from the lovely tea menu, which is in collaboration with Pekoe Tea (I’d recommend the Peacock Alley Blend, the Cloud Catcher or the white The Orangery tea), you are served sandwiches.

They included:

Dark Chocolate & Cauliflower Quiche

Clava Brie, Spinach & Red Onion Marmalade Ciabatta

Crab, Lime & Avocado in a Brioche Bun

Pastrami, Tomato & Pickle Dijon Mayonnaise

Pulled Chicken, Sunblush Tomato & Basil

Hot Smoked Salmon, Miso & Lemongrass, Beetroot Wrap

The Crab Brioche and Salmon Beetroot Wrap were the stand outs for me amongst the sandwiches as they were incredible, whereas the others for me were quite classic without any specific flavour or balance that really stood out. However all bread felt really fresh and I liked the fact each of these were quite different to each other in style, rather than having three finger sandwiches which you see at many afternoon teas.

The Scones

We actually only had the buttermilk scone during out visit to the hotel, as we quickly became full from sweet treats and sandwiches. However we also got a little bag so that we could take our uneaten treats home, including clotted cream, jam and passionfruit curd and I had my chocolate scone the following morning for breakfast. It reheated surprisingly well and was particularly good with the cherry jam. Chocolate and cherry is such a lovely combination. The scones were not dry, had good flavour and a lovely texture which was softer in the middle and not too crumbly. I don’t think I’ve tried chocolate scones before but this one was really good! The Passionfruit Curd is also delightful and gives a nice contrast with its zesty tart flavour.

The Desserts

Following the sandwich plate, you get the tiered cake stand with displays the desserts and scones – and it’s quite impressive. If I can only tell you one thing about this afternoon tea, it’s to be hungry when you’re visiting. There’s plenty of food to try. The You Make Me Happy and Meant To Be were my two favourites, where the former is like an indulgent and creamy Ferraro Rocher and the second like eatable art. The desserts are all like little artwork as the pasty chefs have done a marvellous job, not only with flavour, but with how it all looks. I would say that I’m happy you can take some of them home as I would never be able to finish it all unless I’m incredibly hungry. It also becomes a lot of sweet after a few so if you know you’re gonna take some home, I’d recommend going for a good balance of sandwiches, desserts and scones and then taking some desserts home.

Sweet Menu Included:


Red Velvet Blondie, Coffee & Irish Cream Cheesecake


Raspberry & Rosewater Madeleine filled with Pistachio Praline


Dark Chocolate Cremoso & Milk Chocolate Caramel Brownie


Milk Crème, Mascarpone & Burnt Honey Seven Layer Cake


Hazelnut Crisp, Noisette & Gianduja Chocolate Rocher


Meringue, Strawberry Compote & Vanilla Ganache Petit Gateau

The Atmosphere

The afternoon tea is served in the Peacock Alley on the ground floor of the hotel. Surrounded by historical walls this beautifully open space allows for natural light through a glass ceiling and soft live music in the form of a pianist or harpist. The blue and pink colours feel calming in the tea lounge area of the room, and more cosy with the darker teal in the cocktail/coffee area behind.

A happy surprise is when I was asked if I wanted to try and sabrage a champagne bottle, which I’ve never done before, but it was great fun to learn about.

Overall we had such a lovely time at the Waldorf Astoria with excellent service, lovely atmosphere and tasty treats. It is one of the more pricey afternoon teas at £55/pp but if you are looking for a special occasion this is definitely one of the better afternoon tea experiences in Edinburgh.

✦ Want to read more about other afternoon teas?

✦ Or more of my travels?

Check out my Instagram @swedishwhiskygirl or @scandinavianabroad to see even more photos and follow along on future adventures.

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Moa Nilsson

Adventurous Swede with a fondness for castles, snow and vintagesque experiences.

Scandinavian Abroad

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