A busy summer evening at the Daylesford Cafe on Selfridges’ Rooftop
I absolutely adore London in the summer – there is so much to do and much of it alfresco. Although the weather has been incredibly changeable this year, I’ve had many lovely days and evenings out in the sunshine… I even stood in the rain to watch the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant.
Yummy: Sandwiches, scones and cake… and a flute of champers on the side
So as the summer is starting to draw to a close, I’ve been in a mad panic trying to do all the temporary summer events and venues on my ‘to do’ list. One such temporary venue is the Daylesford Cafe on the roof of Selfridges department store. As part of the store’s Big British Bang celebration, their historic Oxford Street store’s roof was open to the public this summer for the ‘Big Rooftop Tea & Golf Party’. So as well as a pop-up cafe, there is also a crazy golf course.
Even though I was unable to combine golf and tea for my visit, but I did enjoy a session of afternoon tea and bubbly with one of my best friends on a hot August evening recently. Booking in advance for the cafe is unavailable, so a friend and I turned up and rode the lift six stories high to the top floor. Once arriving, what previously (one assumes…) had been a plain corridor had been transformed into a summer wonderland with AstroTurf, bunting, golf balls, china tea cups and strawberries stuck to the wall… quintessentially English.
The summer-tabulous entrance to the roof (left) and a ‘cake hole’ on the crazy golf course (right)
Tea, glorious, tea: A wall of china teacups
Our fears of it being too busy to accommodate us were soon allayed and we were shown to a table by a friendly waitress and given a menu. The menu is 100% organic with ingredients coming from Daylesford organic farm in Gloucestershire. As it was my birthday a few days later, we decided to have an early celebration and opted for Afternoon Tea for Two with champagne.
With the sun shining on our faces after a long day cooped up at work, we chatted away over finger rolls with smoked salmon and cucumber and egg mayonnaise, followed by scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream and a slice of Bakewell tart. We also mixed things up by drinking champagne and a pot of tea together, a surprisingly refreshing mix – despite the different temperatures.
Even though I would have loved to had a chance to play crazy golf, visiting the cafe was a treat in itself. I love afternoon tea, champagne and rooftop bars, so the combination of all three was certainly a winner for me. As well as being delicious, the fact that the food was all organic, made it slightly less naughty! There’s still a few weeks left in September, so hopefully I’ll get a chance to return…
- Bompas and Parr’s Crazy Golf runs until 2 September (limited availability so booking is highly advised), while Daylesford’s pop-up cafe has now been extended until the end of September, open from noon until 9pm. The roof is accessible from a lift in the Fragrance Hall in Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London W1A 1AB. For more information, visit the Selfridges’ website. Nearest tube: Bond Street or Marble Arch.
Putt-ing it about: Punters playing crazy golf