Vintage Afternoon Tea by the Sea
Just when you think all of the good ideas have vanished from our midst, Frieda’s Tearoom and all its wonderful originality come to light.
Family owned and operated, Frieda's Tearoom is an afternoon tea experience like no other. Set on-board a vintage shabby-chic double-decker bus, guests are individually greeted and the personal hospitality continues right through your one and a half hour experience along the beautiful Bournemouth coastline. The return journey starts at Bournemouth Pier and heads to Boscombe Pier and Southbourne’s historic Hengistbury Head.
During our tour, we experienced exceptional sunshine with glorious 28C temperatures. As we watched the sea shimmering like the Mediterranean, it was difficult to believe we were in the UK. From the top deck of the bus, the sea views were fantastic and afforded us views of majestic yachts, jet skis and powerboats speeding across the horizon.
Afternoon tea on a vintage bus
Frieda's pulls out all the stops to ensure a quality experience. The plates, sugar bowl and milk jug are all served in beautiful gold plated bone china for a sense of occasion.
Given that the afternoon tea experience takes place on a moving bus, extra precautions are taken to avoid spillages - tea is served in lovely ceramic handle-less mugs with rubber lids and the three-tier cake stand is affixed to the table so it doesn’t fall over.
The delicious afternoon tea consisted of homemade cakes and sandwiches (cheese and coleslaw, smoked salmon and cream cheese, egg mayonnaise and cheese and chutney) and oven fresh scones that were still piping hot from the oven and served with clotted cream with homemade strawberry jam and delightful Rainforest Alliance certified Dorset Tea.
The desserts were a piece of art with options such as lemon slices, sensational macaroons (fruity and lightly chewy in the middle), mini chocolate cupcakes and strawberry slices on offer.
For a memorable afternoon tea experience unlike any other, Frieda's is in a league of its own. Frieda’s Teabus Tours operates every weekend and departs at 2pm from Bournemouth Pier.
*My afternoon tea experience was hosted by Frieda’s Tearoom. All opinions are my own.
When Kiln Soho opened last year, everything about it excited me: Northern Thai food, cooked entirely over fire in front of your eyes and relaxed bar seating – two of my favourite things.
So, when we rocked up at 7pm on a Saturday night, we were more than willing to wait our turn, and wait we did. Instead of hanging about, we pottered off into the depths of Soho, where we enjoyed several exorbitantly priced but marvellous cocktails (in The Den @ 100 Wardour Street). When our spot at the bar was ready, we received a text from Kiln informing us that our spot at the bar was ready, which was lucky for my wallet as our drinks tab was starting to make me nervous!
One of my favourite dishes was the chicken – the finest I’d eaten all year, with its crispy skin and a juicy thigh with all the barbecue char of summer. I also loved the dinky lamb skewers dusted with Sichuan pepper, cumin and a hefty amount of salt.
Next up was the langoustines ceviche, which epitomised the taste of Thailand – heady chilli, zesty lime juice and fragrant sweet mint. We also devoured the rich and unctuous brown crab meat and the pork belly and glass noodle claypot.
We rounded all of this off with a ridiculously moreish Southern-style dry, minced pork curry spiked with heat and providing a huge hit of umami. We also had a rich, short rib Burmese curry, which according to my partner, was the best dish he’s ever eaten.
The chefs here all cook with mesmerising skill. Within the restaurant, there’s a gorgeous hum, and a sense of the here and now, which helps keep you present, focusing on the food and the atmosphere.
The cooking station is covered with burnt embers and ash and is laden with precariously balanced claypots that have seen better days alongside ready and waiting red-hot woks. We watched as mussels were scorched momentarily over naked flames until they opened to provide them with a smoky flavour.
Despite the chaos, there is a surprising calm, and the presentation of the food is sophisticated. All the dishes we enjoyed were beautiful, intriguing, feisty morsels that I simply couldn’t get enough of. Quite simply, it’s a place that brings me so much joy it makes me happy to be alive.
58 Brewer Street
Restaurants, Bars and food/drink pop ups and reviews
There's nothing more delicious in life than indulging in a sensational meal.