National Cream Tea Day

June 26 2015

There seems to be a national day for anything these days and I’d love to know who decides on what and when, but as a cream tea aficionado how can I let this one pass without a mention?

“There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea”
~ Henry James

And surely there is a no more perfect one than the cream tea – whether Devon style (with the jam on top) or the Cornish style (with the cream on top) what matters most is the freshness of the ingredients. Light. melt in the mouth scones, fruity strawberry jam, and lashings of golden crusted clotted cream. Are you drooling yet?


The Waymarker, near Constantine, was named champion of the ‘Truly Cornish Clotted Cream Tea‘ in 2014 but I am doing my best to seek out decent rivals 🙂

Where and what is the best afternoon tea you have experienced? My most memorable is High Tea at the Victoria Falls Hotel, Zimbabwe – tiny crust-less sandwiches, Petit fours, scones, cakes and Earl Grey tea served on Stanley Terrace with spectacular views of the Victoria Falls bridge down the Batoka Gorge with the spray rising from The Falls.


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I live in the UK, but when I was younger I spent several years travelling the world followed by a period living in South Africa. I look forward to a long and leisurely retirement doing what I like most - gardening, photography, walking and travelling.

80 thoughts on “National Cream Tea Day”

      1. Haha, I’ll make sure to remember it next year. I’ll mark the day by playing Monthy Pythons “Lumberjack”, where they mention butter scones with tea – the nearest thing I’ll ever come to cream tea.

  1. The burning question is though … Jam or cream on first? Which is the Cornish way – and is that the definitive way? A bit like making tea – milk or tea in first …

    1. Cornish way is cream on top, the way I like it; but then I can’t say no to scones at any time, buttered, ones with cherries, plain ones, cheese ones. I love scones 😀
      I don’t like tea.

  2. Let’s celebrate, Happy National Cream Tea Day, everyone! 😀
    Tea first and jam, no cream for me, please. Aaaaaaah, delicious!! 😀

  3. I WANNA BE THERE! I often think back with fond memory and grumbling tum to the delicious creamed tea we had in St. Ives. MMMMMmmmmmm Can you get creamed tea in Scotland or Ireland? We’re going there come fall.

  4. I’m a jam first man as well, and if I have tea, it’s always milk last.
    I had a really good cream tea once in Rye, in Sussex, at Simon The Pieman, but it’s gone downhill since. The cream teas in Cornwall are always the best though. For a ‘high tea’, The Ritz wants some beating. I took my Mum there, for her 80th. (It comes at a price though…)
    Regards as always, Pete. x

    1. Oh but a High Tea is always such a treat – your Mum must have been delighted. I have been tempted on several occasions but the price always puts me off.

      1. I didn’t begrudge the cost of the tea. It was ‘endless’ in that you could have as much as you wanted. The staff were lovely, and the service was impeccable.
        But the glass of wine (normal size) I had later in the bar cost an eye-watering £12, in 2004!

  5. I had no idea what an important day it was today. I would have laid out my delicate china tea cups and saucers, which haven’t seen anything but dust at the back of the cupboard for years. 😀

  6. National Cream Tea Day? Now why did I not know that? 🙂 There’s no time today, but maybe tomorrow I could go in search of a cream tea and celebrate a day late. Or… we could just use our fancy cups and saucers this evening in its honour. The best cream tea/afternoon tea I have had was in Claridge’s Hotel in London – the service and food was fantastic. The view wasn’t stunning though, although the surroundings are lovely.
    I can’t decide if I am a Cornwall girl or a Devon girl when it comes to putting the cream and jam on. Sometimes the jam is so thick that it lifts the surface of the scone and won’t spread properly, so I would do cream first in that case. Although the same can sometimes be said for thick clotted cream – it can be hard to spread too!

  7. My all time favourite in the Coombe House Hotel in Gittisham Devon, try it out if you’re ever going through. There are also beautiful arab horses in the grounds!

    1. Oh, now this really does make me wonder whether I ought to write a book about Cream Teas, obviously I’d need to do my own research you understand 🙂

      1. Shouldn’t thinks so, Jo! And I’ve just had a very dark, bitter home-made chocolate cake, berries and lashings of mascarpone cheese!

  8. I bow to your superior cream tea knowledge, Jude. I usually opt for cheese scones but if I’m in the mood for something sweet a jam and cream scone will do very nicely. 🙂

    You’ll have to publicise this day a little better next year. Lots of us are missing out!

  9. Jude, I’m very pleased to hear that you will continue to research to find the best cream teas in the country, just so you can pass this valuable information on to us. What a sacrifice you’re prepared to make!

    I’m looking forward to a special high tea in Melbourne in two weeks, at Adriano Zumbo’s new dessert restaurant Fancy Nance. I’m going with my sister and my nephews.

        1. Strictly speaking they should be ‘Cream Teas’ then no-one gets offended. We had some delicious stem-ginger ones in Devon a few years ago. Must go back there 🙂

  10. Such a delicious photo, Jude. I could eat that cream tea right now for breakfast. 😛 The best and most indulgent teatime treats I’ve ever had, was ‘High Tea’ at The Oyster Box Hotel. I could really do that again. 🙂

  11. I missed it! When my mother visited over the years I would take her up to London for tea. We ‘did’ the Savoy, Dorchester, Ritz and Claridges. When the car journey became too much we went to Lavenham Swan. Himself and I recently had a very pleasant aft tea at the Salthouse Hotel with Sir Lancelot in Ipswich. But I have to say my all time favourite cream tea was at the Headland Hotel in Newquay. Was it the views or the giant scones?

  12. I thought from the name that cream tea was tea with cream in it, but apparently tea has taken on a broader sense. I confirmed that in the online Oxford Dictionaries at

    which gives the usage as chiefly British and defines that sort of tea as ‘A light afternoon meal consisting typically of tea to drink, sandwiches, and cakes.’ I have heard the expression high tea, but here you’re getting high from the cream.

    1. When I was a child we ate breakfast, dinner (cooked meal at lunch-time) and then tea which consisted of sandwiches – often bread and jam, a drink of tea, a piece of fruit and if we were lucky some cake. On weekends we had ham and salad! High Tea is much posher 😉

  13. I’ve been eating my Devonshire teas wrong, then. They were Cornish teas without me realising. Well, except we don’t often get clotted cream here. 😦 We had a Cornishman in our team when I was working on an IT project many years ago. Whenever it was his turn to bring in morning tea, he would bring scones, jam and clotted cream. It was a stressful job and these were our little release valves and I think for that reason they rank up there as my some of my favourite morning teas. 🙂

  14. I don’t think I can beat your Victoria Falls example by coincidentally the high tea I shared with my mother in Victoria, British Columbia was pretty spectacular!

  15. I am glad that The Waymarker has set such a challenge for you to find a more satisfying #creamtea experience. We are jealous of your endeavour to sample all these scones with jam & clotted cream and hope to see you back to ensure ours maintain the standard we set to win the “truly cornish cream tea” award by ChooseCornish

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