Welcome back, royal wedding enthusiasts! Now that you have transformed your home into a little slice of London and properly decorated for your royal wedding viewing party, it’s time to focus on the most delicious part of entertaining: eating and drinking.
Since this an early morning party (7am is actually a reasonable start time), not to mention a British party, there is zero question that tea will be involved. And what goes better with tea than scones, clotted cream, and a few other traditional English treats? Below, we’ve gathered all the suggestions you need for how to beautifully display and serve tea to a crowd, plus recipes for British-style scones and more.
Even the act of making tea can be a beautiful and display-worthy part of your royal wedding party. Here are a few options for teapots that look as great as they function:
Brew then serve tea directly in this petit teapot that’s a striking marriage of glass and copper, with a modern round shape that moves seamlessly from kitchen to tabletop.
A bit more traditional, but still keeping with copper’s on-trend look, this German-style hammered tea kettle reminds us of the Old World in the best possible way.
If you already have a tried-and-true method of making tea and it’s best kept in the kitchen (we won’t judge if you use a Keurig), consider transferring the tea once brewed to a beautiful teapot for serving.
Wedgwood is a classic, and you can never go wrong with a classic. This bone china teapot practically screams “I’m fit for British royalty!” with its delicate floral design that dates back to the 19th century.
It’s hard to think about teapots without thinking about Royal Albert: this British company has been making fine bone china tea accessories since 1904. Their Old Country Roses pattern will lend an air of vintage-garden-party romance to your 21st-century royal wedding party.
Tea Cups & Saucers
Not to be Captain Obvious, but you’re gonna need some lovely tea cups to distribute all that exquisitely brewed tea. Since we’re getting fancy here, go ahead and pair your teacups with matching saucers for a formal look (and for the practical purpose of giving guests a place to rest their stirring spoons). Here are three different options in a range of price points.
Modeled after detailed beading on one of their famous evening gowns, this bone china cup and saucer set from fashion designers Marchesa for Lenox strikes a perfectly poised note that feels just right for a royal wedding party.
For a more contemporary vibe, Casafina’s reactive-glazed stoneware tea cup and saucer set is both stylish and fanciful. While it sparkles in white, it absolutely radiates in bright aqua. Choose this set if your want your royal wedding party to feel more fun ‘n fresh.
If you are really bringing your A-game to your role as royal wedding party host, then this high-end, luxury porcelain tea cup and saucer set should be in your shopping cart. Since it’s pretty much a work of art, we also wouldn’t blame you if you just set out one or two for display (with polite no-touch instructions).
A Complete Tea Service Set
If you can hear the Queen in the back of your mind chastising you for not going with a totally matching set, fret not: the Chelsea Collection from Sara Miller London Portmeirion has all the serving pieces you need for a totally coordinated buffet of tea and cakes. The fact that its lovely bird motif is utterly gorgeous, and embellished with 22 carat gold, makes it all the more perfect.
The Tea Itself
Once you’ve selected the beautiful pieces of serveware that you want to use for your tea service display, don’t forget to give a bit of attention to the tea itself. Display a variety of individual tea bags in this elegant wooden tea box for guests to self-serve, and then brew up a few big pots of the tea blend specifically made for the royal wedding by British tea purveyor Harney & Sons.
Scones and Pudding and Pie, Oh My!
It’s practically enforced by Parliament that British tea requires British scones. A bit more like what Americans consider biscuits (less sweet and dense than the chunky triangles you find in the Starbucks display case), British scones are flaky canvases for any combination of jam, honey, and/or clotted cream. Here’s a recipe for how to whip up a batch of tea scones for your royal wedding party guests.
Sure, it’s going to feel a bit early to eat too many sweets, but also: it’s a royal wedding. How often does that happen? Throw caution to the wind and fully indulge your guests with a few traditional British desserts. Sticky toffee pudding is as gooey as it sounds, with dense date cake covered in caramel sauce.
Banoffee pie is another toffee-based British confection, but this time toffee is mixed with sliced bananas (hence the name) in a pie crust and topped with tons of whipped cream. Warning: although bananas might sound more appropriate for before-10am dining, there is a lot of sweetened condensed milk in this recipe.
A bit lighter, or at least fruitier, is Eton mess: mix strawberries and broken meringue in glass bowls and top with whipped double cream for this summery speciality thought to have originated at Eton College, the all-boys preparatory school that both Prince William and Prince Harry attended.
To counteract all of that sugar, serve some savory (and kind of breakfasty) bites as well. Traditional tea finger sandwiches are a given, especially those with egg salad or thinly sliced cured ham. Bacon deviled eggs will also always go over well in a crowd.
Lastly, let your royal wedding party guests wash it all down with something a bit more celebratory than just tea. Pimm’s Cup is a classic English cocktail made from gin-based liqueur Pimm’s No. 1 mixed with cucumber, lemon, and lemon-lime soda. The traditional drink of Wimbledon, it’s refreshing enough (and low enough in alcohol) to pass for a respectable brunch sipper. Serve up a big pitcher with extra cucumber and lemon slices to garnish; this wavy-glass pitcher by Juliska has an organic, imperfectly perfect quality and will show off the drink’s verdant colors.
Tune in tomorrow for the third and final installment in our series on how to throw the ultimate royal wedding party, where we’ll finally get to the wedding-watching portion of the festivities—which means it’s all fun and games from here.