Afternoon Tea Review: Tower Restaurant, The National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

Last weekend a girl friend and I went for a short break in the beautiful city of Edinburgh. We completely lucked out with the weather – gorgeous clear blue skies and bright sunshine the whole time, perfect for a bit of laziness education on some of the Edinburgh Bus Tours.

The Castle and Grassmarket:

edinburgh castle and grassmarket area summer sunshine june 2013 panorama

Views back to the city (Castle on the right) from Ferry Road:

edinburgh city view from bus tour to leith suburbs castle and old town volcanic plug

We’d decided well in advance that afternoon tea was a must for the weekend, and, recommended by the rather amazing www.afternoontea.co.uk , we booked a table at the Tower Restaurant, atop the National Museum of Scotland. I’m pretty sure our decision was made entirely on it having terrace!

The museum itself was well worth a look on the way to tea. It has 4 floors of completely varied exhibits, from Scottish history, to Formula One cars, animals, and a whole heap of interactive stations where you can play games, press buttons, and generally have a play with some amazing things. Plus, there is a great rooftop garden, with all manner of different plants, and amazing views across to the castle.

national museum of scotland roof terrace views over edinburgh castle with grandstand and old town

We arrived at the Tower Restaurant a little early, weary from a days activities, but they were only too happy to seat us early. Having spent a lot of the weekend in the sun already, we opted to sit inside, rather than on the terrace, happily next to some wide-open sliding doors, so we could still see out to the old town and reap the benefits of fresh air.

tower restaurant edinburgh view of old town rooftops sunny summer skies afternoon tea terrace

tower restaurant edinburgh sunny terrace with a view bistro tables afternoon tea review

It was pretty obvious what we were there for – afternoon tea all the way! Our order was taken, and we were then handed the menus:

afternoon tea menu tower restaurant national museum of scotland edinburgh review

And as if the food selection was not enough, they had a great range of teas to complement it:

afternoon tea place setting the tower restaurant tea selection edinburgh

What seemed like a long wait later, but was probably very short (I was hungry!), we were presented with this fantastic solid silver cake stand. A work of art in itself!

silver cake stand full of afternoon tea at national museum of scotland tower restaurant

afternoon tea table setting tower restaurant national museum of edinburgh review summer sunshine

And the food! So much! So much choice!

afternoon tea silver cake stand amazing selection of food review sandwiches cakes scones tarts mousse

As seems the sensible thing to do, we started from the bottom and worked our way up.

On the savoury layer:

– mini cheese quiche
– smoked salmon and cream cheese bite
– egg mayonnaise sandwich
– chicken and tomato wrap

afternoon tea national museum of edinburgh sandwiches and tarts smoked salmon cheese wraps

Next up – cakes and scones:

– plain scone
– fruit scone
– shortbread biscuit
– dundee cake
– chocolate brownie with cream

cakes biscuits scones and brownies afternoon tea edinburgh

Scones of course served with jam and clotted cream – wow they were good!

tower restaurant edinburgh scones plain and fruit with jam and scottish clotted cream

fresh fruit scones with jam and clotted cream at tower restaurant national museum of scotland edinburgh

And finally the top layer – belly’s feeling a little full now…

– lemon and white chocolate mousse
– red fruits tart

afternoon tea silver cake stand lemon and white chocolate mousse red fruit tarts

I had my mousse with the shortbread biscuit on the side – a perfect combination!

afternoon tea review lemon mousse with white chocolate topping eaten with scottish shortbread biscuit afternoon tea edinburgh

We were completely stuffed – but not a crumb left in sight!

afternoon tea tower restaurant edinburgh empty cake stand all eaten

A quick amble round before we left, we found the terrace had amazing views of Edinburgh Castle; well we’ll just have to come back, and sit out there next time…

terrace at tower restaurant national museum of edinburgh afternoon tea with views of the castle and old town

And our review? YUM!

I honestly think it was one of the best afternoon tea’s I’ve ever had. Not only was there a huge amount and selection of food, but every single bite was delicious, even the bits I wasn’t expecting to like.

A definite must next time you are in the beautiful city of Edinburgh!

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9 thoughts on “Afternoon Tea Review: Tower Restaurant, The National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

  1. That’s right up my street….looks gorgeous!! Especially the mousse and shortbread.
    The photography is first class, great post.
    If I’m ever in Edinburgh would definitely go there.
    Steph πŸ˜ƒπŸ’‹

  2. Excellent site, thanks very much for publishing this, I am right now studying to be a event coordinator, I for sure will make note of this web blog, thanks for your time in creating the informative posts.

    • It was so, so lovely. The whole weekend was in fact, so nice to spend some time with a girlfriend, complete different to spending it with a boy!
      You should definitely make more time for afternoon tea. My mum is retiring this week and I’m sure it’s part of her retirement plan that we simply must go more often. I’m so well up for that!
      J x

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