The Regency Tea Room, Bath

Date visited: Monday 14th January 2019

The Regency Tea Room is on the second floor

Bath is well provided with tea rooms and other venues to take tea, with at least three tea rooms in the city centre close to the cathedral and shops. The Regency Tea Room is on the edge of the city centre, away from the shops but on the tourist trail for those making their way to the Royal Crescent.

On the second floor above the Jane Austen Centre, the Regency Tea Room is uninspiring from the outside, but those making their way past the wax cast of Ms Austen and up the two flights of stairs, will find a more interesting experience. The tea room, according to a notice on its wall, was once the bedroom chamber of the house. Tables are laid seemingly with cups and saucers intentionally not matching, with red-patterned cups on blue-patterned saucers, and vice versa. Tea is served by staff dressed in a manner that will be familiar to any who have seen a Regency period drama.

Appropriately coloured timers are provided, to ensure both green and black teas are brewed to perfection.

With only two staff on duty on the day I visited, the food menu was reassuringly small. The drinks menu had a reasonably long list of teas. A savoury tea (consisting of ham, cheese, salad, pickle and a savoury scone) plus a piece of chocolate cake and a pot of green sencha tea, with refill of water, came to a very reasonable £13.45. The plate for the savoury tea could have sensibly been a little bigger, and the cheese in the savoury scone was not well distributed, but it was still very enjoyable.

This is one of the few establishments where a full afternoon tea is available, at least on less busy days, without booking in advance: this is clearly aimed at capturing the tourists and has a tourist-capturing price. But avoid that and the prices are reasonable, the food very enjoyable, and the service excellent. Although above the Jane Austen Centre, there is no entrance fee to access the tea room, but those visiting the Centre first might get a slight discount on their tea.

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