These days my idea of an adrenaline-filled activity is watching rowers take part in Shrewsbury Regatta. I experience the rush as the boats judder past. I feel the pain of the rosy-cheeked oarsmen (and women) and, at the end of the race, I’m exhausted just like the young competitors. Covering half a mile without moving an inch is thirsty work, you know. So I use my last bit of energy to recharge at Camellias Tea Rooms.
Situated opposite St Alkmunds Church, Camellias Tea Rooms is a gem in a town which has too many chains when it comes to coffee shops. That’s probably why it’s a hotspot for locals and tourists alike. The opulent interior features oak panelling, chandeliers, black granite tables, unbelievably comfortable seating, a solid oak floor and designer cloakrooms with gorgeous-smelling toiletries. The menu is equally as exquisite.
It lists an assortment of teas and coffees, cold and hot snacks, cakes and afternoon tea. I heard about their specialist Suki tea and couldn’t resist the opportunity of trying it for myself. Connoisseur blends include red berry, green tea with ginseng, fairtrade darjeeling, organic rooibos, apple loves mint and mango tango.
I opt for the green tea. It is served in a Japanese tea pot and arrives on an individual bamboo tray. I waste no time pouring my first cup. I take a small sip and several more follow in quick succession. The tea is refreshing, light and very, very tasty. I also order a Boston fudge brownie. (It didn’t feel right having tea without cake.) It’s not too sweet, the right amount of moist and topped with chunky pieces of yummy fudge. As I relax with my second cup, I decide to buy some green tea on my way home. When I return for day two of the regatta, I want to be refreshed and raring to go.
Camellias Tea Rooms, St Alkmonds Place, Shrewsbury SY1 1UJ