It was my Mama's big birthday last week and I wanted to really treat her. She will not allow me tell you her age as she likes to play the 'guess my age game' and I don't blame her to be honest. She doesn't half look good for her age and if I look like her when I am 30 years off 100, you do the math, I will be doing the Macarena like it is going out of fashion.
I have always been a fan of visiting manor houses as there is something ever so grand about them. I like to soak in the history of a huge house over a pot of tea or two, and imagine who would have lived there and how it functioned back in the day. All very Downton Abbey, and I'm good with that.
Gisborough Hall is set back under the most picturesque scenery a mere 2 mins drive from Guisborough Village. I am a little town/country girl and I never tire of looking at the hills come rain or shine.
I am not going to lie to you tea bees but I could eat afternoon tea out of a cardboard box and be the happiest girl in the land but there is something extra special about enjoying it in a Victorian country house owned by Lord and Lady Gisborough.
January is all go for me after a busy lead up to Christmas and trying to get plans made for the months ahead so to take some time out and really sit back and relax was a treat for myself too.
Instead of scrapping for a car park, especially on market day in Guisborough and dashing into one of the little coffee shops, why not head over to Gisborough Hall where you can park up for free taking in the most beautiful grounds North Yorkshire has to offer. Book yourself in for an afternoon or cream tea and sip away the day with unlimited tea and coffee, I did and boy, was it super fine. Makes for a very happy tea lady, let me tell you.
Throughout January and February, Gisborough Hall are really freaking treating you with their New Year's offers. A 2 course lunch for £15.00 per person or you can take a leaf out of my book and tuck into afternoon tea for £15.00 each. A wonderful little treat to kick start the new year. I feel like you always need something to look forward too in January or February to get rid of those post Christmas blues.
So, let me show you what you have all been waiting for.
We opted for a champagne afternoon tea of course as it was a very special occasion.
With the option of Afternoon Tea or a Gentleman's Afternoon Tea ,which I was super curious about, we decided to get one of each and pick and choose as there was something so appetising about enjoying a pie with afternoon tea.
The sandwiches were divine with smoked salmon, ham and mustard, cheese savoury and cucumber and cream cheese to get the party started.
The lightest tasting scones were up next and there were two beauties to really get your teeth into and get those taste buds tingling. I'm a cream then jam girl but don't hold that against me.
There is nothing better than a slice or 3 of cake washed down with a piping hot cuppa now is there? I am a black tea fan so I ordered an Assam to go with this platter of desserts.
A gingerbread macaroon, Mango & Kiwi compote a slab of lemon cake and my favourite a chocolate & raspberry brownie was on my horizon and waiting to be consumed.
The Gentleman's Afternoon Tea was pretty special too. Not just for gentleman, as you may or may not know I am in fact a lady girl not a gentle man, I just sometimes love a good pint, a game of darts and football. The gentleman's afternoon tea is more for the savoury lovers like me.
A platter of beef and horseradish sandwiches. A pork and apricot sausage roll and a steak pie cooked to order. Oh, my! Let me tell you it was well worth the little wait. Teamed with an onion chutney that was just mouth watering. I could eat this all over again this morning.
To finish this meaty afternoon tea off there was tasty fruit scone with clotted cream and a strawberry jam and a slab of fruit cake with a slither of my favourite cheese, Wenselydale.
Mum loves a coffee so a fair few lattes were consumed. Unlimited tea meant for a couple of loo trips as I just don''t know when I have had enough. It was more of an excuse to have a wander round Gisborough Hall and soak in the newly refurbished reception rooms to be fair. Unlimited tea and coffee with your afternoon tea means you can sit and soak in the country atmosphere.
The staff were a dream and really know their stuff. Not a fault or stutter when reeling off what was in each and every afternoon tea and all the ingredients. That apricot and pork roll is what dreams are made of and I think I need to whip a couple up for my trip to Manchester this week.
There is so much going on at Gisborough Hall in the next couple of months and I am super excited to go try some of these out. Burns Night is next on the list on Wednesday 25th followed by Mother's Day lunch, Mother's Day afternoon tea and plenty of Easter celebrations.
I have a big birthday coming up myself in March and with a Pudding Club back by popular demand, I think I know what I will most definitely be doing. Any pudding club takers what to join in an old tea lady's birthday celebrations feel free to roll me out after I have eaten every single pudding known to man.
I need to take more time out to enjoy the finer things in life with people who meansthe most to me. January, you have been ever so kind to me. Keep up the good work.
Love Carli x