Jesmond Dene House – Vegan Afternoon Tea

There’s something very British about an afternoon tea, so it seemed like the perfect way to round off a recent trip from a Brazilian visitor. I felt she didn’t have the best experience last year when I took her to Hawthorns, the restaurant housed within the Crowne Plaza Hotel. You can read about it here. Little details were overlooked, like serving spoons with the desserts, and we felt the service was lacking. This time round we felt Jesmond Dene House wouldn’t let us down, and with a vegan option available we would all be accommodated.

Booking is required to sample one of their afternoon teas, especially if you have dietary requirements. I was able to arrange one for the following day, but this was midweek. If you are wanting to visit on a weekend more notice is definitely required. Unfortunately I was hit with a terrible stomach bug and couldn’t go, so Mr. Canny took his mother and Dinky along for an afternoon of refinement.

I have previously written a post about where you can find a vegan afternoon tea in the North East (here) and at the time I lamented at the fruit skewers found on JDH’s offering for those who are dairy and egg free. I stand by this and say it is disappointing that an alternative can’t be offered, as it is in other establishments like GB Cupcakery or SIX. I appreciate working with substitute products is tricky until you get the hang of it, but I believe many more would flock here for the afternoon tea because of its beautiful surroundings. I have yet to take afternoon tea anywhere else that has lived up to JDH, it has to be said, which is why we continue to return.

The standard afternoon tea at Jesmond Dene House

When you consider the price point for the afternoon tea is the same (£22.50pp), it does seem a bit imbalanced to receive a dollop of sorbet when your dining companion is presented with a selection of cakes. That said, the Berry Sphere was impressive and Mr. Canny enjoyed the theatre of having to smash it open. For me, however, cakes are a must as part of the whole experience. We obviously haven’t been deterred from returning and feel a lot of thought was definitely put into the savoury offering. Dainty finger sandwiches containing Hummus & Roasted Vegetables, Avocado & Cress, Tomato & Olive and Apple & Pickle were part of Mr. Canny’s stand, which he said were perfect. He also said he enjoyed the scones, although he found it disappointing he was only given jam and no dairy-free spread. This was given last visit, although we had to request it after we were given butter erroneously.

Mr. Canny’s Mum was very impressed with her generous tea and was so full she had to bring a box home with her of all the treats she couldn’t manage. The pair, along with Dinky, weren’t rushed to leave when they had finished and were able to enjoy the surroundings while spending some quality time together before heading to the airport.

The vegan afternoon tea option at Jesmond Dene House

If you have a special occasion coming up it is worth checking out what offers are available at Jesmond Dene House. It has been nearly a year since we last dined on an evening here, so I’m eagerly anticipating a revisit.

Thanks for reading,

Pip x


  1. Gemma Forster

    Great post….as a vegetarian I find it so hard to eat out!

    1. Emma Phillips (Post author)

      I find being a vegan harder in certain respects, but it’s good to find out about new places 🙂


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