CN Tower SunnnyCN Tower View Sunset CN Tower 360 Restaurant Starter CN Tower 360 Restaurant Main CN Tower 360 Restaurant Desert CN Tower View Night A trip to Toronto would not be complete without a trip to the CN Tower but the queues can be astronomical and with time being of the essence, we figured the best way to experience the view from the CN Tower would be to eat there! While my parents had eaten in a 360 revolving restaurant previously in New York, this was my first time and nerves were running high given my extreme fear of heights!

The Arrival

We booked a table at a time that meant we should be able to witness the sunset (the 360 restaurant website helpfully shows the current estimated sunset time so that you can plan your dinner accordingly). You will need to arrive early to make your way through the airport style security before making your way to the lifts. The best part about booking for dinner at this stage is the fact that you skip the huge queues for the viewing decks (but you do get to go down to these after your dinner). We were quickly ushered to a separate queue which, while appeared to be more luxurious (lovely reception area with well dressed servers who escorted your coats and bags to a cloakroom for your convenience), the classic tourist traps were still available including a big green screen for a photograph of you and your family superimposed onto a CN Tower inspired background. For those with a fear of heights, the lifts are super speedy and the journey will be over in no time (thank god!). For those without a fear of heights, the lifts have great view points in both the walls and the floor so you can see the busy city zooming away from you.

RELATED: Looking for somewhere to stay close by to the CN Tower? Make sure you check out The Renaissance Toronto Downtown Hotel - you can read my review here

The Dinner

We were quickly ushered to our table on the revolving floor and presented with the menu (albeit we were distracted by the view for quite some time). The menu changes twice a year (for Winter in November and Summer in May). We were visiting in Winter and were happy with the very extensive menu (the wine menu in particular was huge)! The food was delicious and worthy of the "fine dining" reputation that the CN Tower portrays. The service on the other hand, could do with some work. Maybe we were just unlucky with our server, but he knew very little about the menu, very abrupt and would often would wander off and leave us waiting a long time to order/pay. The food was worth the long wait and of course the ever-changing view keeps you entertained in the meantime.

The View

I would definitely recommend visiting the CN Tower at sunset. While the sunset itself wasn't particularly spectacular (it was over very quickly), I loved being able to see both the view in the light and the view in the dark. As we visited in the middle of Winter, by the time we were ready to leave the tower, it was pitch black outside and I think this was my favourite view of the city! I'm a sucker for twinkly lights! Taking photos of the view isn't always plain sailing when you are constantly rotating and also trying to shoot through reflective glass - but sometimes it's good just to enjoy the moment!

RELATED: It's so much fun looking down over all of the places you've visited in your trip - find out all the other great things to do in Toronto here

The Price

Given the popularity, this won't be the cheapest meal you eat in Toronto! The prix fixe menu is currently set at two courses for $65 and three courses for $79 which given the standard of the food isn't bad at all! Wine however can be pricey but with so many to choose from, you are likely to be able to find something to suit your budget and taste. The cost of your meal also includes the elevator ride and access to the Look Out Level and Glass Floor. General admission to both of these floors costs $39 regularly - so if you're ordering a two course meal, the meal is actually only costing you $26 (excluding drinks)! * Prices in Canadian Dollars (currently $1 = £0.62 - correct as at September 2017).

RELATED: A trip to the CN Tower is almost mandatory on a visit to Toronto. As is a trip to Niagara Falls! Find out about all of the experiences you can have in Niagara here

Summary

Assuming the experience is within your budget, eating in the CN Tower should definitely be on your wishlist of things to do in Toronto! It's the kind of experience you will only do once (despite the fine dining experience they try to portray, it is still a tourist trap at the end of the day) and a trip to Toronto would be incomplete without a visit to it's most famous landmark! Have you ever eaten in a revolving restaurant? Did you enjoy it?

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts are my own. Danielle1

      Escaping Essex - Travel Blog - A trip to Toronto wouldn't be complete without a trip to the CN Tower - to skip the queues and the price, book dinner in the CN Tower instead!        
Sketch Afternoon Tea Three Girls Sketch Afternoon Interiors So apparently it's now the very end of National Afternoon Tea Week in the UK! I don't know who made up all of these celebratory days/weeks, but this is one I can definitely get on board with. Coincidentally, last weekend Amy, Charlie and I had Afternoon Tea at Sketch. I also bought a new book on National Reading Day last week, without knowing that it was National Reading Day - apparently I'm really good at accidentally obeying these fake celebratory days! Sketch Afternoon Interiors Sketch Afternoon Toilets The Aesthetic  Lets face it, most people visit Sketch for it's gorgeous interiors rather than the prestigious 2 Michelin star food. There are 4 dining rooms spread over three floors and the afternoon tea is served in the "Gallery", a very pretty pink and girly room. Pink walls, pink suede chairs, rose gold accents and even a man in a pink suit (which I was so totally jealous of). Be warned, the low elegant lighting in the Gallery is absolutely shocking for photographs, so I apologise in advance for shoddy photos! The elegant vibe is enhanced by the string trio who played a whole host beautiful acoustic music - my favourite being The Circle of life from the Lion King! It wouldn't be right to not speak about the toilets when talking about Sketch - these futuristic pods have become a tourist attraction in their own right! I've never seen so many people taking photos in the toilets (no, not even on a club in Chelmsford on a Saturday night). Sketch Tea Pots and Cups The Tea First up was the choice of tea - where you will be spoilt for choice! I am no tea connoisseur (in fact I only started drinking it this year - am I even British?!), but I don't think you could make a wrong choice; and even if you did, you can just ask to swap it for another!

RELATED: At Christmas time, I visited B Bakery for their "Festive Afternoon Tea". If pink and girly isn't your vibe, maybe you're better suited to this one! And you can read all about it here

The Caviar Man Shortly after the arrival of the teas, "The Caviar Man" paid us a visit. A man dressed in a funky pink suit presented us with a small dollop of caviar along with an egg concoction with cheese bread sticks. I don't eat fish, so struggle with the concept of caviar and didn't eat this - but I would have happily taken more of the cheese bread sticks! Sketch Afternoon Tea Sandwiches and Cakes Sandwhiches Then came the big moment - the arrival of the sandwich/pastries on the classic three tiered cake stand. The sandwiches on offer were duck egg and mayonnaise, coronation chicken, smoked salmon and Jacob's cream and finally a tomato chutney, lettuce and mayonnaise concoction. As I don't eat fish, I swapped the smoked salmon sandwich for an extra coronation chicken slice which was the BEST IDEA EVER. Of the four sandwiches on offer, the coronation chicken was without a doubt the winner and I'm dribbling a bit just thinking about it.. Petits Gateaux  There was not a single cake on this plate that I didn't enjoy (and I STILL say that I don't have a sweet tooth - maybe I need to reevaluate that). The beauties on offer in this sitting were -
  • Malabar Marshellow - while an unusual addition in an afternoon tea, these were amazing. Amy and I actually ordered another 8 of the marshmellows to nibble on while we continued chatting - they were so addictive!
  • Blueberry and vanilla choux  - the blueberry was a gorgeous twist on a normal choux pastry, I loved it.
  • Strawberry tart - a great classic and cutely presented with a little flower decoration.
  • Apricot and rosemary cheesecake - this cheesecake was served in a mousse format and was probably my least favourite of the bunch but still blimmin' lovely!
  • Chocolate caramel gateaux - Chocolate is without a doubt, my biggest weak spot, so I absolutely loved this. Despite being so rich in flavour, the cake itself was really light, which is perfect when there are so many other cakes to try!
Sketch Gallery Bar Cakes from the Trolley While forks deep in the petits gateux, a waitress came and asked which cake we would like from the trolley - more cake?! The choice was between Victoria sandwich and a pistachio cherry cake. We all opted for the classic Victoria sandwich and it was gorgeous! The Afternoon Tea Staple - Scones Another choice was upon us before we knew it - plain or fruit scones. I love scones but was so full by this point that I didn't even touch it - but the girls looked like they enjoyed theirs! Sketch Gallery The Price After stuffing our faces, chatting the time away and snapping photos at every possible opportunity, it was time to pay up and leave. While bookings are hard to get on weekends, we were never rushed and could have stayed longer - which is great. The classic afternoon tea is £57 per person and to add one glass of champagne, the price is upped to £72. We stuck to the classic afternoon tea and didn't think that £15 was a worthwhile investment for one glass of champers! The afternoon tea includes unlimited food which sounds great but given the amount of food on offer, you probably won't need to ask for seconds! While the price is higher than other afternoon teas in London (for example, I recently went to the Charlie and The Chocolate Factory afternoon tea which was great), you're paying for this beautiful venue and the 2 Michelin star dining experience which in my eyes, was well worth the money.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts are my own. Danielle1

        If you're visiting London, Afternoon Tea should be at the top of your "to-do" list! Sketch is the perfect place for afternoon tea if you want a girly beautiful interior and great food!
IMG_3477 v2IMG_3468 v2IMG_3478 v3 If you've read my London Winter Bucket List, you'll know that I wanted to try a "festive" afternoon tea because there is no combination better than "food" and "Christmas". You may also be aware if you follow me on Twitter that I have two work buddies who are also bloggers, so we jumped at the chance to make a booking a B Bakery in Covent Garden for one night after work! Sadly Charlie (lifestyle blogger) wasn't able to make the evening but it's okay because myself and Amy (baking blogger) definitely ate enough on her behalf! I'll stop nattering now and get on to the good stuff... B Bakery Formally know as "Bridget's Bakery", B Bakery is famous for it's Afternoon Tea bus tours which, if you hadn't guessed, involve eating a selection of Afternoon Tea classic foods whilst touring around London on a big red bus - could you do something more quintessentially English? My friend Charlie has written about her experience on the bus here if you're interested. I really like the idea and it would be great for someone who is only in the city for a few days but wants to sample the English tradition of Afternoon Tea whilst still being able to continue their sightseeing! However, if you're not a fan of eating whilst in motion (not an issue for me, I will eat wherever and whenever I can), you'll be glad to hear that the have a cute little bakery in Covent Garden. The Menu From 15 November 2016 - 5 January 2017, B Bakery offer a "Christmas Afternoon Tea" and the menu features some great twists on the usual afternoon tea classics. The turkey sandwich was to die for (who doesn't love a good turkey sandwich?!) and there wasn't one thing on the menu that we didn't enjoy. I only removed the salmon from the smoked salmon blinis as I don't eat fish - otherwise everything was perfect! The only thing that could have improved the menu is something that truly makes you think of a good Christmas dinner like pigs in blankets maybe? I am obsessed with those tasty little buggers. There was a wide selection of teas and coffees, including one Christmas Tea which is cinnamon based - yum! But of course I opted for the hot chocolate which was great! As well as a hot drink, a glass of fresh orange juice and a glass of prosecco are included in the price! Menu.PNG Overall Opinion For £33 on a weekday and £36 on a weekend, this isn't the most expensive afternoon tea experience available, you get a lot of food/drink and it will definitely get you in the Christmas spirit - there's something about pulling a Christmas cracker and plonking a silly hat on my head (ridiculous selfie below) that makes Christmas seem real - so if you are in London and want to try something new, I'd definitely give this a go! IMG_3480 - v2 I'm an avid fan of afternoon teas and it was great to try something a bit different to the usual fare. Have you visited B Bakery before? What did you think?

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts are my own. Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Danielle1