Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Best Gluten Free Afternoon Tea in Edinburgh

A proper afternoon tea is a really indulgent treat when done properly.  It offers the chance for a catch-up with a friend or a family celebration.  When going for a gluten free afternoon tea it is important to book in advance to ensure the best experience possible.  Here is a small selection of some of Edinburgh’s finest.

Café Portrait

Set within the Portrait Gallery on Queen Street, Café Portrait offers a superb afternoon tea in the snug at the rear of the restaurant.  With cake stands and prosecco, this is an indulgent treat with a lovely selection of savoury and sweet delights.  With advance warning the whole stack of scones, cakes and sandwiches can be offered gluten free, including the warming little cup of soup to start.  Add in the glass of fizz and celebrate how a GF life does not need to exclude the highest quality afternoon tea!

Run by Heritage Portfolio, the same quality of food is also available at the two modern art galleries, Hopetoun House (during summer months) and at the Signet Library on the High Street.  These all offer GF lunches and treats as a matter of course.

Café Portrait
Queen Street, EH2 1JD
0131 624 6423

North Bridge Brasserie Scotsman

The North Bridge Brasserie is the public restaurant within the Scotsman Hotel.  It is a great spot for a pre-dinner drink, or dinner itself.  The surroundings are modern, but comfortable and the Brasserie also offers a badged Gluten Free Afternoon Tea.  With treats including sandwiches made with Genius bread; fruit scones; lemon meringues and strawberry & ginger cake, the tea runs alongside a classic Afternoon Tea.  Also offered with champagne, this is an indulgent, but gluten free friendly option. 

North Bridge Brasserie
Edinburgh EH1 ITR
0131 622 2900

The Balmoral Hotel

The Palm Court in Edinburgh’s Balmoral Hotel is a legendary location for ladies who do afternoon tea. Classic cake stands, a wonderful choice of teas and the best possible service all contribute to make this one of the city’s finest afternoon tea experiences.  Gluten free options include open sandwiches, scones and cakes, all on a separate stand.  While the website does not make this option explicit, as you might expect from a five star establishment, nothing is too much trouble!

The Balmoral Hotel
1 Princes Street, EH2 2EQ
0131 556 2414

G&V Hotel

My previous review of lunch at the five star G&V demonstrated the excellence in service and the level of understanding around gluten free dining.

The G&V also provides a delicious prosecco afternoon tea with a cake stand of treats plus tea and a glass of fizz.  Advance warning brings you a pile of delicious gluten free cakes, sandwiches and delights.  The service is always good and the hotel will undergo a refurbishment in early 2015 as it drops much of the previous Missoni branding and improves the public spaces.  Can’t wait!

G&V Hotel
1 George IV Bridge, EH1 1AD

0131 220 6666

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