Brighton is a phenomenal place for food lovers. Often dubbed the United Kingdom’s ‘Coffee Capital’, it promises an alluring mix of coffee shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants. Each eatery has its own individual character – just like the rest of Brighton – from charming garden courtyards to sea-facing views of the Brighton Pier.
But what they all have in common is their spectacular afternoon teas and traditional cream teas. Think finger sandwiches, home-baked scones, and unlimited pots of tea. Feeling cheeky? There’s a prosecco, gin or champagne afternoon tea waiting for you too!
However, with a long list of options, it can be tricky to decide which one to choose. Fortunately, we’ve done the hard work for you. So, without further ado, here are the 22 best places in Brighton for afternoon tea…
1. Metro Deco – for a Vegan, Gluten-free and Dog-friendly Afternoon Tea
With its vivid 1930s décor, stepping inside the Metro Deco tea room on St. James’ Street in Brighton is like stepping back in time. Transformed from what was once a simple vintage furniture shop, Metro Deco is now a Parisian styled tea room with a modern twist – a self-declared ‘storm in a vintage teacup’.
Tuck into typical English favourites like cream cheese and cucumber sandwiches, sweet treats, and scones. Sip on loose leaf tea of your choice with your pinky finger raised, or opt for a boozy afternoon tea – there’s a choice of prosecco, G&Tea, and Sussex sparkling wine. Don’t have a sweet tooth? Perhaps the savoury afternoon tea menu will be more suitable.
This glamorous tea room is the perfect place for afternoon tea in Brighton. In fact, it’s been voted within the top three afternoon tea spots in Brighton. It offers something for every palate – it even comes with a specially created vegan afternoon tea, a gluten-free afternoon tea, and even a dog-friendly menu for your four-legged friends!
2. That Little Tea Shop in the Lanes – for a Traditional Cream Tea
That Little Tea Shop offers one of the best traditional cream teas in Brighton. Tuck into freshly baked scones served with jam and Devon clotted cream, a sandwich of your choosing from the menu, and a steaming pot of specialist tea or a cafeteria of coffee.
There is plenty to tempt you to veer off the set afternoon tea menu too though. The bakery is always well stocked with fresh, home-baked cakes and treats, from chocolate brownies and flapjacks to gluten-free cakes and Bakewell tarts, so browsing the bakery counter can be risky for the waistline. But it’s worth it. Promise.
Visiting with a group of friends or family? There are special prices for a group of two and three guests enjoying an afternoon tea at That Little Tea Shop Brighton, so bring them. The more the merrier!
3. Julien Plumart – for BYOB Booze Afternoon Tea
The Julien Plumart cafe offers an afternoon tea in Brighton with a difference. On top of the variety of delicious treats, they’ll provide in an elegant setting, you can BYOB (bring your own booze) for just £2.50!
The Afternoon Tea for Two includes two pots of tea (or coffee – they don’t judge!) and a good mixture of sweet and savoury options. For those with a sweet tooth, the menu includes two cakes and macarons and a warm brownie served with a dollop of ice cream. This is perfectly balanced by the savoury choices of ham and cheese finger sandwiches and roasted tomato, mozzarella and basil pesto mini buns.
With its BYOB policy, the Julien Plumart café is the perfect boozy afternoon tea in Brighton for special occasions. Booking your event here, such as bridal showers, birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers, and more, is highly recommended. Just make sure you book well in advance for big groups!
4. Bohemia – for a Traditional Sussex Afternoon Tea (With Champagne!)
Between 15h00 and 18h00 every day, Bohemia offers a traditional Sussex afternoon tea for two in Brighton. Think fresh sandwich tiers filled with tasty finger sandwiches, still-warm scones served with jam and Cornish clotted cream, and a tier of home-baked sweet treats. It’s particularly enjoyable in the summer months when you can enjoy your Brighton afternoon tea on the sunny terrace.
Wash the homemade goodness down with a pot of loose leaf tea of your choice. If you’ve got special dietary requirements, that’s totally fine too. Bohemia in Brighton offers a vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free afternoon tea alternative. Please note that unfortunately for solo visitors, a minimum of two people are required to enjoy the Bohemia afternoon tea.
Feeling fancy? Why not upgrade your traditional afternoon tea to a champagne afternoon tea served with a glass of Veuve Cliquot. Bliss!
5. Leman Tea Room – for an Intimate Afternoon Tea in Brighton
One of the smallest tea rooms in Brighton, the Leman Tea Room promises a traditional English afternoon tea. Set just off Brighton’s main pier, this cosy little tea room is one of the city’s hidden gems you just stumble upon if you’re lucky – so make sure you keep the recommendation to yourself!
Leman Tea Room is not big or commercial and that’s all part of its appeal. Family run with rather kitsch yet charming décor, it offers both indoor tables and outdoor seating when the weather plays along. However, as there is limited space for about 12 people, we would recommend booking before or arriving early.
Voted one of the top tea houses in Brighton in 2016 by the Culture Trip, the word is getting out so make sure that you go while the tea shop is still relatively undiscovered. You can look forward to a mouth-watering array of homemade cakes, fresh sandwiches, and cream teas served with a steaming cup of tea in vintage bone china, pinky raised, the way it’s meant to be.
6. Cakes the Difference – for the Best Savoury Afternoon Tea in Brighton
Cakes the Difference is passionate about good food, and that’s just what you’ll get with their delectable afternoon tea. This family-run patisserie and tea room in Patcham is a veritable home away from home with vintage china, table cloths, and a laidback atmosphere.
What’s special about this tea room is that all of the products are made right here on the premises, using free-range eggs and locally sourced ingredients wherever possible.
The Brighton Afternoon Tea includes your choice of sandwiches, a range of homemade cakes and pastries, and a scone served with jam and clotted cream. If you’re more of a savoury person though, there’s a menu just for you too. Along with finger sandwiches, it comes with a choice of mini quiches, sausage rolls, feta and onion parcels, and scones with cream cheese and chutney.
While the Birchall teas are undoubtedly superb, the coffee is good too. Swap your tea out for a Rye Bay coffee, a company in Hastings that supports the Point Foundation in Rwanda. A percentage of their profits go to the woman’s refuge – a worthy cause.
7. The Coach House Café – for a Kid-Friendly Afternoon Tea
The Coach House Café offers a really good value afternoon tea in Brighton, and it’s one that can be easily missed if you haven’t been given the recommendation. At just £15 ahead, you’ll get a selection of freshly made sandwiches, home-baked cakes and, of course, scones served with jam and rich clotted cream.
Everything at the Coach House is made fresh every morning with locally sourced ingredients so you can be sure your bill will be supporting small businesses in the local community. The afternoon tea comes with your choice of tea or coffee or you can upgrade it to include a glass of bubbles at just £5 per glass.
Enjoy your afternoon tea at one of the indoor tables or out in the pet-friendly backyard when weather permits. What’s more, a specially tailored kids’ menu offers a picnic lunch that includes a choice of sandwiches with veggie sticks and crisps for little ones. Very healthy!
8. Royal Pavilion Tearoom – for a Regal Afternoon Tea
Afternoon tea at the Royal Pavilion Tearoom, tucked within one of Brighton’s most historic landmarks, is something special. It can be enjoyed before or after you explore the gardens – the perfect shady retreat on a scorching summer’s day.
Take a seat inside the restored gold-walled tearoom on the upper level or find an enviable spot on the sunny terrace with a view of the Royal Pavilion gardens. The afternoon tea menu includes a selection of English favourites, such as finger sandwiches, millionaire shortbread, and buttermilk scones as well as a slice of Battenberg or Victoria sponge.
A Brighton afternoon tea would not be complete without a pot of the region’s finest. Take your pick of a wide range of fragrant teas, including their own Sussex blend and a variety of herbal-infused brews. Afternoon tea is available every day at the Royal Pavilion Tearoom in Brighton, so there’s really no reason to miss out.
9. Stanmer Country House – for a Ginful Country Tea
Stanmer Country House offers a choice of six delightful afternoon tea options – each competing for the title of the best afternoon tea in Brighton. Embrace this age-old British tradition in a choice of stunning venues – the stylish red library, the grand Thomas Pelham dining, or the elegant Lady Anne dining room.
Take your pick of some unusual afternoon tea menus. Go for a standard cream tea with the Stanmer House Traditional Afternoon Tea, indulge in a glass of prosecco with the Lady Anne Tea, or upgrade to a chilled bottle of champagne with the Henry Pelham Tea.
In the summer months, the Summer Garden Tea served in the private gardens is a real indulgence, while vegans and vegetarians can enjoy the V Afternoon Tea – which includes a choice of vegan wraps and scones. Last but not least, the Brighton Gin Tea is a real perk as it comes with a teapot filled with Brighton Gin and Fever Tree tonic! We’re sold…
10. The Salt Room – for a Sweet and Seafood-Based Afternoon Tea
Enjoy a Brighton afternoon tea with a difference at The Salt Room in King’s Road. Winner of the Seafood Restaurant of the Year 2017, Salt is a seaside restaurant that focuses on serving sustainable and local produce.
A simple afternoon tea menu caters for both sweet and savoury seafood-inspired palates. Think Burrata crostinis, fish sandwiches, lemon crumpets and cod fritters, paired alongside spiced scones, macarons, and doughnuts.
Pair your afternoon tea with a steaming cup of JING Tea or Pelicano Coffee. Or spruce it up with a G&T or a glass of sparkling wine! They’ve got it all.
11. Talk of Tea – for a Tea-riffic Afternoon Tea
Tea lovers unite! If it’s a cosy and charming teahouse you’re after, look no further than Talk of Tea situated in the heart and centre of bustling Brighton.
Home to the biggest selection of loose leaf teas to be found in Brighton, made of dried fruit and flowers, your biggest worry here will be trying to decide which one to go for. Tea flavours include Japanese cherry blossoms, organic lavender, and ginger and lemon, to name just a few.
On a sunny day, you can hang out in the secret garden with its romantic hanging love seats. The full afternoon tea with its mini sandwiches, scones, and cake selection is a real waistband-expander. However, for those looking for a lighter option, there is a cream tea and there are also options for vegans and gluten-free customers too should you need it.
12. The Mock Turtle – for an Old School Cream Tea
Hidden down a side street close to the seafront, the Victorian-styled Mock Turtle is the oldest tea shop in all of Brighton so it’s a worthy stop on your Brighton afternoon tea tour. You can look forward to traditional afternoon tea delicacies here – think homemade cakes and fresh-out-the-oven fruit scones.
With its iconic turquoise façade, the décor at the Mock Turtle is a mix of period furniture with rustic wooden tables and sophisticated blue willow china. The traditional cream tea offers a choice of white, wholemeal or fruit scones served with finger-licking clotted cream and homemade jam.
If you decide to opt for a DIY afternoon tea, you can take your pick of anything on the menu or from the specials of the day. Whatever you go for, you’re promised generous portions – the doughnuts are enormous so make sure that you come hungry!
13. The Grand Brighton Hotel – for Afternoon Tea by the Sea
The Grand Brighton Hotel is an institution in this seaside town, and trying the Afternoon by the Sea in Brighton is an absolute must, whether you’re visiting for the first or the 500th time.
Held in your choice of venue – the Victoria Terrace or in the Victoria Lounge – there are two variations you can enjoy here: the Victoria Terrace Tea and the Victoria Grand Afternoon Tea – and both can be upgraded to include sparkling wine or champagne.
The Victoria Grand Afternoon Tea is the main affair here with tasty treats whipped up by the hotel’s executive chef, Alan White. This impressive three-tier afternoon tea in Brighton offers an impressive selection of quiches, sandwiches, pastries, freshly baked scones, and cakes that will have you rolling home.
A wide range of the hotel’s own signature blended teas, as well as traditional teas and infusions, are the perfect accompaniment to this Brighton afternoon tea.
14. The Metropole Bar – for More Afternoon Sea Views
The Metropole Hotel has been serving an affordable afternoon tea on the Brighton Seafront for more than 125 years – so you know it’s good.
Available every day from 11h00 – 17h00, the cream tea menu offers a set of sandwiches, scones, and cakes prepared fresh daily by the hotel’s head chef. Think of pleasures such as a lavender mousse, pistachio and mascarpone tart, and a slice of red berry and matcha tea Battenburg! Yum.
Take a seat in the bar or on the terrace and tuck into your afternoon tea feast served with a pot of Twinings tea. Feeling like a boozy afternoon tea? No problem. Why not treat yourself to a glass of prosecco or champagne? The Met Bar also offers a gluten-free cream tea and a high tea alternative should you seek it.
15. Terre a Terre Brighton – for a Veggie-Friendly Afternoon Tea
Terre a Terre is one of Brighton’s best vegetarian restaurants located down East Street. It offers a traditional afternoon tea from 15h00 – 17h00 not just on weekends, but every day of the week.
The special Savoury Tier includes a range of delicious veggie-friendly options, such as tapioca seaweed crackers with pickled vegetables, steamed rice and halloumi buns, and spicy stuffed potatoes.
There are also three more tier options to choose from if your palate leans towards sweet more than savoury: two sweet options and a traditional tier of scones, jam and clotted cream. Looking for a splurge? Why not upgrade your afternoon tea to include a glass of prosecco? It’s great value for money.
16. The Queen’s Hotel Brighton – for a Bubbly Afternoon Tea with a View
The No1 Bar & Bistro located inside the Queen’s Hotel along King’s Road in Brighton offers a choice of traditional afternoon tea and a classic English high tea.
Take your pick of home-baked scones, freshly made finger sandwiches, and a choice of delicious chocolate, carrot or cheesecakes all served with a steaming pot of tea. Or, alternatively, you can add a glass of prosecco for the table for just £5 a glass.
Not only is the food here really good, but you’ll also enjoy panoramic views across the promenade and Brighton seafront. Book early to grab yourself one of the enviable windows seats! You won’t regret it.
17. The Brighton Regency Routemaster – for an Afternoon Tea with a Tour
One of the best and most unusual ways to enjoy afternoon tea in Brighton is with a trip on the restored Brighton Regency Routemaster. This bright red fine dining bus offers a range of tables for two or four customers where you can tuck into a delicious afternoon tea with a special twist. Don’t worry, if a classic afternoon tea isn’t your thing, you can upgrade it to include a glass of gin, prosecco or champagne.
While you enjoy your decadent meal, the Brighton afternoon tea bus will take you on a whirlwind city sightseeing tour of Brighton, visiting several important landmarks such as the Brighton Pier, Royal Pavilion, Hove Grand Avenue, and other iconic attractions. It even includes a visit to the nearby seaside towns of Rottingdean and Saltdean – ocean views from standard!
This afternoon tea on wheels is a great choice for celebrating a special occasion, from anniversaries to birthdays and hen parties. We’d recommend booking early if you have a large group as it gets very popular.
18. Hotel du Vin – for an Afternoon Tea with French Champagne
Everyone should treat themselves to an afternoon tea at Hotel du Vin in Brighton at least once in their lives. The perfect mixture of sweet and savoury, the menu offers a tasty selection of finger sandwiches and handmade scones.
When it comes to tea, you will have your hands full. Literally. Take your pick of options such as Mojitea – a green tea with mint and lime, Fruit Salad – with whole raspberries, and Gingerbread Chai – a rooibos tea served with cinnamon, ginger and cardamom.
Prefer something more decadent? Why not add a glass of champagne? They serve a selection of fine French champagnes, such as Hotel du Vin Lombard Champagne from Epernay, the Lanson Pere et Fils Bruit from Reims, and Lallier Rose Grand Cru from Ay. They also have a fantastic festive-themed afternoon tea arranged for the Christmas season so make sure that you check the website in advance for updates.
19. Malmaison – for an Afternoon Tea with Marina Views
Looking for a classic afternoon tea in an elegant setting? Head to the Chez Mal Lounge at the Brighton Malmaison. You will have your choice of options: a traditional afternoon tea, the Mal afternoon tea, or a cocktail, prosecco or champagne afternoon tea. They’ve got it all.
The Malmaison Brighton afternoon tea is a classic afternoon tea that’s been reimagined. Think fruit or plain scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam served alongside decadent treats like dark chocolate mousse, a slice of Battenberg, a salted caramel banoffee tart, and lemon meringue cupcake.
Savoury options include a chicken and turmeric wrap as well as oak-smoked salmon, cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches on dark rye. If you’re a tea connoisseur, you’re in luck as there’s a wide array of speciality teas to wash it all down with.
Cocktail lovers will love the choice of cocktails that include the ‘Black Forest Martini’ with butterscotch schnapps and berries or the ‘Tea in the Rose Garden with Hendrick’s gin, rose liqueur, and blackberry and elderflower tea.
20. The Claremont Brighton – for a Special Children’s Afternoon Tea
The Claremont is a five-star Victorian-style hotel located on Second Avenue in Brighton. It offers a traditional afternoon tea from 14h00 to 16h00 every day that’s just too good to miss. Take your pick of the location you enjoy it in – drawing room, study, dining room, or perhaps the garden during the summer.
Choose from a selection of tea or coffee served with cream cheese and cucumber or egg and cress sandwiches – to name a few – and other treats like strawberry meringues, gin cupcakes, Victoria sponge and chocolate brownies. One up the menu with a glass of prosecco from just £6! Specially themed afternoon teas are available at the Claremont too, so keep an eye on their website.
Traditional Afternoon Tea aside, the real highlight of the hotel is the Children’s Afternoon Tea in Brighton. It offers a choice of fruit juice, a baby chino or a mug of peppermint tea served with marmite sandwiches, fairy cakes and jelly. The kids will love it!
21. Café Rouge Brighton’s Homage to Fromage – for a Cheesy Afternoon Tea
We get it. Not everyone has a sweet tooth, so cream tea may not be for everyone. Which is why you’re in luck! Café Rouge offers a cheese afternoon tea known as the Homage to Fromage – the perfect alternative to a traditional afternoon tea in Brighton.
On the menu, you’ll find some tasty cheese dishes, such as baked camembert served with crudites and garlic flatbread, an artisan cheese board with baby figs, grapes and water biscuits or a baguette, and your choice of Croque monsieur served with ham or a veggie version served with baby spinach, goat’s cheese and a splash of truffle oil.
Wash these cheesy treats down with your choice of hot drink – espressos, cappuccinos, herbals teas or fresh mint teas are all on the menu. Oh, and did we mention that you can upgrade it to include a glass of wine and cheese for two for just £5 more? It’s a done deal as far as we’re concerned.
22. The Ivy in the Lanes – for Afternoon Tea in the Brighton Lanes
Tucked away on Ship Street within the historic Brighton Lanes, the elegant Ivy in the Lanes Brighton is a great location for a food-filled or booze-filled afternoon tea. Plus, it’s open every day of the week so you’re never bound to miss out.
Take your pick of the simple cream tea option that includes tea and scones, the traditional afternoon tea that comes with a little extra, or the champagne afternoon tea with a glass of bubbly. All of these options are available from 15h00 to 15h00 daily.
The afternoon tea at the Ivy in the Lanes Brighton is something special. On top of the afternoon tea staples, it comes with savoury options such as truffled chicken brioche and cucumber and dill finger sandwiches as well as sweeter, warm fruit scones. Tempt your taste buds further still with a Raspberry Tarte Tropézienne, pots of chocolate and caramel, and an exquisite blackberry and champagne trifle.
Of course, let’s not forget the fantastic selection of teas, infusions and coffees available to wash it all down with (a glass of champagne makes it worth an upgrade!).
And That’s It!
With everything from traditional cream teas, to gin, prosecco, champagne, and cocktail afternoon tea alternatives, you can see that afternoon tea in Brighton is kind of a big deal. They have thought of everything.
Where you choose to go to enjoy your own afternoon tea in Brighton is completely up to you. It really depends on what type of afternoon tea you’re looking for and the type of scenery you want to enjoy it in. But rest assured that you’ll find whatever you’re looking for in Brighton – and very likely a whole lot more!
Have we left anything off our list of the best places for afternoon tea in Brighton? Let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!