On Saturday I was lucky enough to be invited along to the stunning Celtic Manor Resort & Spa, Newport for a preview of their 2014 festive afternoon tea* and for an introduction to their new blog. I've been to The Celtic Manor a few times previously, I've attended a Wedding reception there, several work's Christmas parties and afternoon tea two years ago. The afternoon tea has changed since I went and is now seasonal, they are currently serving their Autumn tea, the delightful festive tea will be served from 01 - 24 December.
Our private room was suitably decorated for Christmas, with Michael Bublé playing in the background and crackers waiting to be pulled we really did get into the Christmas spirit.
We were greeted with champagne on arrival (Bucks Fizz for pregnant me!), Jess and India from the social media team spoke to us about the new blog and their plans to engage with fellow bloggers going forward (this was their first ever bloggers event), the head chef then came out and spoke to us about the tea that we were about to eat. On the week leading up to Christmas they serve an average of 250 - 300 festive afternoon teas, crazy!
With the afternoon tea comes a glass of Mulled Wine served in a pretty special teapot in the cutest cosy ever, I declined the Mulled Wine but there were a lot of satisfied slurps from around the table so I assume that it was good.
The bottom layer includes delicious finger sandwiches, a gorgeous Caerphilly cheese & leek tartlet, miniature brioche with prawns Marie Rose and a miniature bagel with smoked salmon, cream cheese and chives.
The second layer hosts three Christmas cakes with a difference. A Penderyn whiskey and marmalade festive Bara Brith, Celtic Manor mince pies (the shortbread top is to die for) and a delightfully decorated white chocolate Christmas pudding truffle.
The third and final pretty pastel layer contains pistachio marzipan cones, toasted sweet chestnut bouche Noel and glacé cherry & apricot Florentine.
As if we weren't already struggling at this point we were then served warm candied citrus peel and gingerbread spiced scones. Thankfully there are white boxes on hand so that you can take some of your yummy food home for later, I don't think any of the eleven of us managed to eat it all!
As if they hadn't already spoilt us enough The Celtic Manor also provided us each with a lovely goody bag containing the cutest cinnamon biscuit with the hashtag for the event hand piped onto it, unfortunately mine was knocked in my bag and a bit of the icing fell off, but you get the picture. They also gave us some Elemis products from their spa.
Thank you so much to the Celtic Manor for such a lovely day, and massive congratulations to India for overcoming your fears and hosting your first event! Below are some of the bloggers from the day.