Visiting the Cafe
The Undercroft was originally designed as a drinking den for King James I, a place where he could escape the rigours of public life and revel with the riotous, party-loving courtiers. This summer, visitors can enjoy morning coffee, light lunch or afternoon tea in a beautiful palace with a glorious yet dark history.
Along with coffee and tea starting from £2.50, the menu includes a range of delicious bread, cakes and pastries featuring stunning historic early Stuart creations. Help yourself to a healthy lunch at the salad bar or pop along in the afternoon for tea and scones.
If you’re lucky to pass through historic Westminster as part of your commute, drop by the Coffee and Toast Station for breakfast where you can get complimentary toast with a hot drink.
After you’ve enjoyed a light snack in the Undercroft Café, visit the Main Hall upstairs where you can view Sir Peter Paul Rubens’ magnificent ceiling paintings still in their original setting, just as royalty have done for the past 400 years.
Did you know?
The Stuart kings occasionally used the Undercroft to escape public life. It was often used for gambling during the reign of Charles II. Diarist John Evelyn described one unlucky evening in 1664 where he, as well as ‘the King, Queen-Consort and Queen Mother’, won ‘only a trifle’.
The Banqueting House Undercroft Café and Coffee and Toast Station are open 18 July – 2 September