Northumberland is a vast and beautiful county. It’s a region that is very close to our hearts here on TeaReviews.co.uk and it was actually here that we first experienced “proper” high tea. What makes afternoon tea in Northumberland such a joy is the fact that you’re never too far away from blissful, bucolic scenery. So, make sure you grab a window seat as you enjoy all that the Northumberland region has to offer, from its scenic coastline to its wonderfully quaint towns and its vast, open countryside.
These are the best places offering afternoon tea in Northumberland, and unlike other regions where we take reader comments and general reputation into account, we have personally experienced every last one of these.
Macdonald Linden Hall
Located in Morpeth, MacDonald Linden Hall was once a great place to enjoy afternoon tea in Northumberland, but it doesn’t seem to be accepting new bookings. We’re writing this in winter, some 6 months after we last enjoyed afternoon tea here, so it might be a seasonal thing, but we’ve decided to review it anyway. If you’re looking for a great place to enjoy afternoon tea in Northumberland, it’s worth checking to see if they are open for bookings again.
The sandwiches and scones are above average, as is the tea. These alone would certainly be worth the money and the trip, but it’s the sweets that make this experience come alive. They are nothing short of outstanding—a great way to finish the meal.
At £20 per person, this is one of the more reasonably priced experiences on this list. You also get more food for your money. It’s cheaper, but bigger and better than most places offering cream tea in Kent, Northamptonshire and other southern hotspots.
The Experience 9/10
On both occasions, we were ushered into a small backroom that overlooked the carpark and sat before the bar. There were plush leather chairs in here and it was a very nice room, albeit not one we expected to be eating in. It had more of a posh cafe feel, but we actually preferred this laid-back experience, especially as we basically had the entire room to ourselves on both occasions.
We went in expecting a busy, somewhat cramped and refined experience not unlike what we got at Bettys in Harrogate, but it was more akin to a relaxed, casual evening drink, and it was far from cramped or busy.
One of the more impressive historic hotspots in Northumberland, Maften Hall is a great place to stay for a Northumberland holiday and it’s also ideal for a spot of afternoon tea, which is served for four hours from 12pm every Monday to Saturday, with shorter hours on Sunday.
There is a children’s menu and several different types of adult afternoon tea menus as well. You can opt for a “Gentleman’s afternoon tea” if the little sandwiches are too dainty for your liking, and there are also options to include cocktails, Prosecco and Champagne.
Although it has more of a Jesmond Dene feel to it, afternoon tea at Maften Hall is within the Linden Hall price range and you’ll pay less than £20 per person, with the children’s menu creeping in at under £10. You can’t beat that for value.
The Experience: 7/10
It’s not quite up there with the formal dining experience provided by some of the locations we’ve been to in cities like Newcastle, Chester and Edinburgh or the relaxed one on offer at Linden Hall, but it serves as a middle ground and one that many may actually prefer. It also seems a little more popular so it might not be as easy to book yourself a table.
Other Recommended Places for Afternoon Tea in Northumberland and Newcastle
The ones mentioned above are our favorites and is an ever-growing shortlist, but there are so many more worth a mention and we didn’t feel it right to leave them out. These are our other picks. Just know that if we’ve excluded something it doesn’t mean we hated it, it may just mean we didn’t get around to trying it.
- Tyneside Cinema: A lovely venue and a unique place to enjoy high tea in Northumberland. It’s cheaper than some competing places and while it’s not as good, it’s still well worth a look.
- Cafe 21: At £22 for two people, this is a very affordable way to enjoy afternoon tea with your partner. There are some great finger sandwiches, scones and pastries made here, with a decent selection of teas and an option to add some vintage wine.
- Hilton Newcastle: Let’s be honest, while the Hilton hotel has a great name, it can be a little hit and miss. The Hilton in Newcastle is far from the standout location of the chain, but it has a very respectable dining area and this is where you can enjoy your afternoon tea. It’s also much more reasonably priced than you might expect.