Below Stairs Tea Room

1128 Reviews

Star Travel Rating


Review type

Things to do


Date of travel

April, 2015

Product name

Below Stairs Tea Room

Product country

York, YO1 7JL

Product city

York, YO1 7JL

Travelled with

Reasons for trip

As its name suggests, this is in the servants quarters beneath the house. In some ways it is rather a scruffy place with bare stone walls, exposed service pipes and iron pillars supporting the low beamed ceiling. The only window is set high in the wall, so it is dependent on artificial lighting. This was never intended for show, and it feels what it is, a basement working area. The ladies toilet on the other hand, was attractive and well maintained with green tiles and magnolia paint.

It is a fairly small tea room and soon gets busy. It is table service and our order was taken quickly by friendly staff.

Being lunchtime we decided to start with soup and a roll, followed by piece of cake.

The soup was basil and tomato and came out in a big bowl with a large but very uninspiring brown seeded roll which tasted if it had come in a multipack from the supermarket and could have been fresher. The soup was possibly a bit thin but was tasty with not too pronounced a taste of basil.

There was a good choice of cakes; coffee and walnut, banana and honey, carrot cake, Tuscan orange cake and traditional Yorkshire brack. We both decided on the brack. It was a big slice and would have served two. It was a strange mixture of dry round the edges but moist inside. In many ways it was more like a pudding than a cake. There was plenty of fruit in it. I found that it became increasingly sweet as I ate it and it might have been better with butter to help it down or with custard as a desert. Maybe eating all that roll with the soup was a mistake….

The tea room also serves hot meals. These came out in a big bowl and looked generous size helpings. The sausage casserole needed a spoon to finish all the gravy. The quiche was served with new potatoes and a big helping of mixed salad and looked very good value.

The desert was apple and mixed berry crumble which came out with a small jug of custard. Again this was a large serving that would easily do two.

We always look forward to the tea room when visiting National trust properties. This however was a disappointment. To be honest the surroundings are unattractive. The soup and brack were only ordinary. With a cup of tea, the cost was nearly £10 per person which we felt was expensive for what what we got. The hot meals looked to be much better value. We probably wouldn’t bother visiting her again.

There is no parking by the Treasurer’s House.



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