Afternoon tea at the Signet Library, Edinburgh

Since I keep coming back to this when having afternoon teas at other establishments, I suppose this place deserves some record here as the best afternoon tea I’ve ever had. I even came here all by myself :P with a book, probably. Iirc I managed to buy quite a few Persephone books on this trip and Z was busy at his conference, although he did join me for a bit at the end and scored a free mango sorbet on the house.

Strawberry basil tart – their desserts were all quite inventive and non-traditional, similar to what one might see on the Great British Bake Off.

Raspberry macaron and passionfruit coconut panna cotta. I think I donated the panna cotta to Z, because he likes both panna cotta and coconut. I am not a fan of coconut.

Tomato soup that came served in a little cappuccino cup

Chicken and onion finger sandwich

Clotted cream glowing in the sunlight

Perfectly glazed scone

Gruyere wheel – this was fantastic. And probably quite easy to make, more places should serve this in their savoury tier.

Some sort of carroty polenta

Smoked salmon on a tiny poppyseed bagel, that looks like those mini pepperidge farm bagels, and was quite soft to boot.

Pea soup with jamon iberico

Cous cous and falafel – what they used to replace something that had feta in it (and which I asked them to remove). Never was a huge fan of either cous cous or falafel either but I dislike feta even more. This was actually quite nice! Just the falafel. I probably left quite a lot of cous cous behind. They serve this as part of their vegetarian afternoon tea so it’s not like they had to specially cobble something together for me.

Mango sorbet in shotglasses they gave to Z and me even though he just came here at the end.

Chicken hand pie – great pastry

Dessert tier

Caramel eclair close up

Savoury tier. That cake stand must be a pain to clean up


No dispute. I should have picked up a tote. They have such great tote designs in the UK, particularly those at M&S. Grocery totes here tend to be cutesy or over saturated.

Interior – one is actually eating in the library, and there is a sort of hush about this place with everyone speaking in low voices just because they’re surrounded by stacks of books. One also feels a little bit naughty having a complete meal in a library. The ambience was really fantastic though.


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