By Guest Author Sally Rooma
From Cake Classes to Cake Shops: London’s Best Experiences for Cake Lovers
If you’re planning a day trip to London over the Easter holidays what better way to experience the capital than by eating cake? London has an abundance of exquisite cake shops, artisan bakeries and unique afternoon tea experiences. Looking to improve your baking and decorating skills? There are some fantastic cake classes on offer, too. Take a look at these top picks before you start planning your next sweet adventure in the capital.
Best for… A Clandestine Afternoon Tea
Soho’s Secret Tea Room, 29 Greek St, Soho, London W1D 5DH.
Discreetly tucked away above the Coach & Horses pub in the heart of Soho is one of London’s best-kept secrets. Soho’s Secret Tea Room is an homage to the vintage era with 50’s swing music, vintage crockery and retro chic decor.
Eat: Choose either Traditional Afternoon Tea (£23) or a Cream Tea (£10). Both come with Trewithin Dairy clotted cream and Bermondsey Bramble Preserve. Pressed for time? Pop in for a quick cuppa and a slice of cake (they do a wonderful vegan chocolate cake).
Tip: It gets busy at weekends so do book ahead. Nearest tube: Leicester Square.
Best for… A Cake Lock In
Konditor & Cook, 10 Stoney Street, London, SE1 9AD.
A visit to Borough Market, London’s most famous food market, wouldn’t be complete without buying a cake from Konditor & Cook. Set up by expert baker, Gerhard Jenne, Konditor & Cook make stunning cakes and now have seven shops across the capital. Their celebrity clients have included Tina Turner and the Rolling Stones.
Eat: Join the Konditor & Cook team for an after hours ‘Cake Lock-in’ (£15). You’ll be greeted with a complimentary glass of Prosecco on arrival before tasting their delicious range of cake miniatures. Current flavours include Curly Whirly, Passion Fizz, Lemon Meringue Pie, Gooseberry & Elderflower and Gin & Tonic Cake.
Tip: They also make Easter eggs. Try the salted caramel speckled eggs. Nearest tube: London Bridge.
Best for… Icing Skills and Techniques
The Biscuiteers Icing Café, 194 Kensington Park Road, Notting Hill, London, W11 2ES
The Biscuiteers have taken London by storm with their designer Biscuit Boutiques and Icing Cafés in Notting Hill and Clapham. Get ready to take your Easter biscuits to a new level by signing up to a class at their Icing School. You’ll master new icing techniques and tricks. A 2-hour icing class costs £78.
Eat: You’ll leave with a beautiful tin of biscuits you’ve iced yourself.
Tip: The Biscuiteers also produce a range of stunning cakes. Try the gluten free cocoa, orange and beetroot sponge. Nearest Tube: Notting Hill.
Best for… Designer Eclairs
Maître Choux, 60 Dean St, Soho, London W1D 6AW
Maître Choux is the only patisserie in the UK with a three Michelin star-experienced chef. Joakim Prat is creating a buzz in Soho with his beautifully crafted eclairs and choux. They look like mini works of art and the flavour combinations are modern and inspiring.
Eat: Try the Hazelnut and Milk Chocolate Treasure. It’s painted in gold dust (£5.80) or the Blackberry Cheese Cake with its rainbow-striped white chocolate topping.
Tip: Nearest tube Leicester Square. There’s another Maître Choux store in South Kensington.
Best for … A London Sight Seeing Tour
BB Bakery Afternoon Tea Bus Tour, Victoria Coach Station, London
This is really popular and one of the best ways to go sightseeing around the capital. Hop on an old vintage Routemaster bus and enjoy tea and cake as you whizz past key London landmarks including Big Ben and Buckingham Palace.
Eat: Tuck into dainty finger sandwiches and a selection of cakes including: a passion, mango and coconut tart, a vanilla cream pâtissière choux with blackcurrant compote, a mini chocolate cupcake and a freshly baked scone with clotted cream and jam.
Tip: There are vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and halal afternoon tea options. Nearest tube: Victoria Station.
Best for… Cake Classes With a Master
Cake Boy, Battersea Reach, Juniper Dr, London SW18 1TX
Hop on a Thames River Bus at Westminster Pier and hop off at Battersea Reach, home to Eric Lanlard’s luxury cake boutique (aka Cake Boy). He’ll teach you how to create and bake this delicious Afternoon Tea menu: Ombre Rose Cake, Bee Pollen & Orange Blossom Scones, Pistachio & Rose Financiers and Smoked Salmon & Black Pepper Macarons. A full day class with Eric is £250.
Eat: You take home everything you have baked with you.
Tip: Eric also offers a Summer Baking Class and a French Country Baking Class. Nearest River Bus Pier: Plantation Wharf Pier.
Best for… Cake-Inspired Instagram Snaps
Peggy Porschen 116 Ebury St, Belgravia, London SW1W 9QQ
Instagrammers flock to Peggy Porschen’s Parlour in Pimlico to snap her unashamedly girly and ‘oh so pretty in pink’ shop and café. Decked with flowers, there are over 32,000 Peggy Porschen hashtagged posts on Instagram.
Eat: This is the place to indulge in pretty cupcakes (£5) and heavenly layer cakes (£6.20 per slice). Try the Glorious Victoria or the Lemon, Raspberry and Rose Cake.
Tip: Peggy runs her own Cake Academy where you can take one of her cake classes or launch your cake career by taking a Grand Diploma in Professional Cake Design & Sugar Craft. Nearest tube: Victoria Station or Sloane Square.
Best for… Stocking Up on Baking Books
Books for Cooks, 4 Blenheim Crescent, Notting Hill, London W11 1NN
Londoners are lucky to have this wonderful little bookshop just off the renowned Portobello Road. It’s old school and packed to the rafters with inspiration for cooks and bakers. At the back of the shop, there’s a little café where they create delicious food and cakes using recipes from the books they stock.
Eat: Pop in for coffee and cake or lunch after browsing London’s famous Portobello Road Market.
Tip: Arrive early for lunch. The café is small and very popular with locals. Nearest tube Ladbroke Grove or Notting Hill.
Best for… Cakes and Flowers
Lily Vanilli, 6 The Courtyard, Ezra St. London E2 7RH
If you’re staying in London over a weekend, take time to visit the East End for the Sunday flower market along the Columbia Road. It’s also home to a thriving community of quirky independent shops and one of London’s most sought after artisan bakeries – Lily Vanilli.
Eat: After a wander around the shops, stop for coffee and cake. The cake selection changes according to the season.
Tip: Stock up on vintage teacups and plates at Pot Luck. Nearest tube: Liverpool Street or Old Street.
Best for… Decorating Your Own Ombre Cake
Choccywoccydoodah 27 Shorts Gardens, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9AP
You’ve seen the team of ‘Doodahs’ craft their whimsical cake masterpieces on TV, now you can visit them in their new store in London’s Covent Garden.
Eat: Downstairs is their ‘Bar du Chocolat’ tearoom where you can take your pick from a selection of weird and wonderful chocolate cake creations.
Tip: It gets busy so do book ahead. While you’re there, try their Collect a Cake service. Order one of their ombre cakes, choose your cake toppers and quirky embellishments (kittens, budgies, bumble bees etc) and decorate it yourself at home (£74.99).
Sally Rooma is editor of The Foodie Travel Guide – a guide to delicious places to stay, foodie days out and tasting experiences all over the UK.
For more cake inspiration, check out Sally’s recommendations for the UK’s best Afternoon Tea Experiences. She’d love to hear about your favourite places for tea, so please do leave a comment below.