Dishington’s Tea Room – London, Ontario
While on route to Toronto I made a stop in Lambeth, a neighbourhood in the city of London, Ontario. Located there is a well-reviewed afternoon tea spot known as Dishington’s Tea Room. Its accessibility drew me in as it is right off the 401 highway. Thus, it’s hard to say no to an exquisite tea break during a road trip. The original owner, Myna Taylor, opened Dishington’s Tea Room and named it after her mother in 1981. She was inspired to do so after a trip to England. In 2008, the owners changed but the reputation this landmark had for over 30 years stayed the same.
My reservation was around lunch hour so the tea room was filled with chatter and clinking china when I arrived. At the entrance, there is a counter for payment and shelves with tea items for sale. I found things like teapots, teacups, tea cozies and more. There also seemed to be a rack of clothes across from the counter. I wasn’t sure if that was part of the gift shop or something else though. Off to the right are two small washrooms for guests.
There are a few seating areas in Dishington’s Tea Room. After chatting with the very kind hostess about my reservation, myself and my guest were seated at a table for two close to the kitchen entrance. This allowed us to go through and check out the entire tea room before sitting down with a menu. The amount of space was great as was the cleanliness and happiness from the current guests. This tea room is filled with mismatched tables and chairs, coupled with table cloths that give off an old style. Fun tea and dessert quotes dressed the walls. Overall, the decor added to the homey vibe. When walking throughout the tea room, I felt like I was welcomed in someone’s house.
We were presented a menu shortly after being seated with glasses of water that the owner filled up while welcoming us to their “Free Water Friday” event. He started our afternoon tea date off with a laugh, and a few more followed thanks to him, too!
No other wares were on the table prior to arriving, so everything else came when ordering. We were seated near a shelf that was the home of many vintage teacups. They were stacked together waiting for guests to fill them up with one of the 8 teas or 7 tisanes they offer. They seemed to have stuck with popular teas like Earl Grey, English Breakfast, Chai and tisanes like Chamomile, Rooibos and Mint. You have the option to order an individual pot of tea ($3.00) or a shared pot ($2.00 per person). I ordered a shared pot of English Breakfast. Their menu stated that their teas were all served with boiling water, so I made sure not to order any of the green teas as I was not looking forward to a bitter cuppa.
Dishington’s Tea Rooms caters to all as they also offer coffee, soft drinks, hot cider, hot chocolate, spritzers and more.
After taking our tea order the server returned with a teacup (sans saucer) filled with sugar packets, milk and two vintage tea cups that we admired before a large teapot wrapped in a tea cozy arrived. We were instructed to wait a few minutes to let the tea steep so we did just that. I didn’t want to remove the tea cozy to inspect, but based on the tea selection and my taste buds, I believe tea bags are served, opposed to loose leaf. The English Breakfast tea was robust and took well to milk.
After a few sips of tea, the server returned to take the rest of our order. The food menu was light and small. It featured items like soups and salads with fresh biscuits and their specialty quiche. They also had a selection of sandwiches. The largest item on their menu seemed to be their Ploughman’s Lunch ($15.00) which consisted of a boiled egg, gourmet relish, biscuit, cheese, apple and a small spinach salad. You can view their full menu here. They are accommodating when it comes to allergies/dietary restrictions, too.
I ordered their Turkey Deli Sandwich with Cranberry Mayo & Harvarti ($13.00). It was served with a bowl of their soup of the day which was Tomato. There was an option to get a side salad instead though. The mayo on this sandwich is what really peaked my interest when I was looking over menu. It complimented the turkey well. The soup was very creamy (without any dairy, too!) and flavourful. This is coming from someone who usually is not a tomato soup fan. It was topped with croutons and cheese (not certain if that was dairy-free, too though).
My guest ordered their Soup, Any Salad and Biscuit combo ($14.00). The soup was the same as mine. The salad was made with baby spinach, carrots, apples, cabbage, dried cranberry, and coconut. It was topped with a creamy house dressing. It was crisp, refreshing and paired nicely with the soup of the day. The biscuit was buttery and flaky. I was slightly jealous I didn’t order one!
Since we still had some tea left in our pot after finishing our lunch, we decided to indulge in dessert! The options were homemade carrot cake ($9.00), rhubarb custard pie ($8.00), and scones ($9.00). I believe there are other random options in addition to these three items, I just was not aware of them that day.
We opted for the scones as I can’t have an afternoon tea service without at least one. An order of scones actually comes with two so it was perfect to share. I was a bit surprised at the size though as they were much smaller than I expected. They also were not authentic as they were more like shortbread than anything else. I’m not sure if this is the usual scone they make and serve or if that was just the case for the day I went. The scones were served with Devon cream and an absolutely delightful strawberry rhubarb jam. We made sure not to waste one bit of that heavenly spread!
Dishington’s Tea Room is open Monday-Sunday 11a.m. to 3p.m. With the cheerful service, fresh meals and old fashioned decor, Dishington’s Tea Room gives you the warm feeling of being back at grandma’s place for a comforting cup of tea.
Visit Dishington’s Tea Room:
2485 Main Street
London, ON N6P 1R2
*If you plan to visit, reservations via email or phone are recommended.
**Prices and tea/food options may change. All were accurate at the date of this tea room review.