Britain’s best cream teas

Liz Barrett tucks into tea and scones as she samples Britain's teashop treat


Warren Farm, Isle of Wight
Aga baked, Warren Farm’s scones use flour, butter, milk and clotted cream from the island. The scones are fruit-free and served with fresh strawberries as well as local jam. The farm, situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty, is the perfect stop-off for cyclists and walkers on the Tennyson trail from Freemantle Bay to the Needles. Children will also enjoy visiting the farm’s Kune Kune pigs and Pygmy goats.


Brendon House Teas, Lynton, Exmoor
Winners of the Best Cream Tea Award in 2004 and 2006, Brendon House Teas is a small, family-run tea garden situated at the very heart of Exmoor national park. Many of their dishes are homemade using locally sourced produce and salad and vegetables from their kitchen garden when available. The garden is also home to a wide variety of birds, including sparrows, finches, blue and great tits, wagtails, robins, thrushes and blackbirds – so keep an eye on your scones!

Fingle Bridge Inn, Drewsteignton, Devon
An odd location for a cream tea maybe, but if you like your tea fuss-free then this picturesque riverside inn is the ideal setting to partake in the most British of traditions. Cosy up with a cuppa by the log fire in colder weather or soak up some rays on the river terrace as the Teign waters rush by. Fingle Bridge is a wonderful start or finish to a walk along the Teign Gorge.

The Secret Garden, Mersham le Hatch, Kent
Celebrate spring the British way, by taking your tea outdoors. The aptly named Secret Garden, serves cream teas with locally sourced fresh strawberries and jam on the terrace overlooking a walled garden, attached to a Robert Adams designed 18th-century manor house. All scones are baked on the premises.

Primrose Cottage, Lustleigh, Devon
Another hit for Devonshire but this is after all the county where the cream-tea tradition is said to have originated. Set in a wooded Dartmoor village, Lustleigh’s, thatched cottages, including the Primrose, make this one of the most quintessentially English settings in the country. Having served tea since the 19th century, the tearooms know a thing or two about the art and offer a large selection of homemade cakes. Once suitably refreshed, work it off with a walk along Lustleigh Cleave, a steep wooded valley through which the River Bovey bubbles.
Tel: 01647 277365