Her Majesty's top 10: From her most-loved cake to chosen colour, the Queen's favourite things
Throughout her long life, the Queen gave the 'Royal Appointment' seal of approval to many products yet she remained tight-lipped about her specific likes and dislikes. But every so often, members of her family or household would reveal a tantalising glimpse of Her Majesty's favourites – whether a palace, an item of clothing or even a cake.
Here is a top 10 of the Queen's favourite things…
The Queen had "very floral tastes" when it came to chocolate, according to Adam Lee, chief chocolatier of luxury chocolate maker Charbonnel et Walker. Although he was not supposed to let slip the exact chocolates that her majesty preferred, he later strongly hinted that they were rose and violet creams. "I never said a word, never said a word," he smiled.
The Queen was said to be a 'creature of habit' and until the age of 95, she enjoyed a daily gin and Dubonnet immediately before lunch. However, doctors advised her to give up her preferred drink for health reasons in 2021. But in that same year, it was revealed that the monarch's much-loved tipple would feature the words: 'By appointment to HM the Queen', along with an official crest.
A rich chocolate biscuit cake was the Queen's favourite afternoon tea cake, according to chef Darren McGrady, the former personal chef to the monarch. "This cake is probably the only one that is sent into the royal dining room again and again until it has all gone," he said. "If there is anything left when she has it at Buckingham Palace, it then goes to Windsor Castle so she can finish it there."
From rich sapphire to bright cerulean, it was well known that the Queen loved blue, a colour deeply rooted in royal history. According to a Vogue magazine study in 2012, Her Majesty wore blue to 29% of the state occasions she attended that year. A huge sign that it was her 'lucky' colour was also the frequency with which she used to wear it to the races.
At her 1953 coronation, Queen Elizabeth II was famously crowned wearing Clarins cosmetics, after commissioning the company to create a shade of lipstick that went with her coronation robes. She was still using the brand's products regularly (Clarins holds a royal warrant for "skincare and cosmetics"), and it was rumoured that its Ever Matte powder and Hand and Nail cream were among her must-haves.
Read more: Long lived the Queen: How Her Majesty reached the mighty age of 96
Although her collection was vast, the Queen was rarely seen without her favourite three-strand pearl necklace, given to her by her beloved father, King George VI, who died in 1952. "It’s the necklace that she feels is appropriate," says Leslie Field, author of The Queen's Jewels. "She wants to wear pearls every day as her mother and grandmother did before her. She wouldn't wear a diamond necklace to go to a charity lunch – it is simply traditional that a lady would wear pearls during the day."
When she was a little girl in the royal nursery, the Queen was served 'jam pennies' – bread and jam, cut into a circle the size of an old English penny. While not the most extravagant sandwich, the Queen loved eating them all through her adult life. She also enjoyed cucumber, cream cheese and mint, according to her former personal chef McGrady.
Given its royal name, it's perhaps not surprising that the Queen was a fan of Coronation Street. But surprisingly, she was also a science fiction fan too, enjoying Dr Who as early as the 1960s when the programme first aired and her children used to watch it.
It was reported that her favourite Doctor was the ninth incarnation, Christopher Eccleston. When it came to more traditional television, the Queen was said to enjoy Downton Abbey. According to one source, she "would point things they have got wrong, partly because she is familiar with Highclere Castle, where it is filmed".
Balmoral, her Scottish residence was well-known to be the Queen’s favourite place and she and members of her family would spend every summer there. "I think Granny is most happy there, I think she really, really loves the Highlands," said Princess Eugenie, in a documentary to celebrate Her Majesty’s 90th birthday. "Walks, picnics, dogs – a lot of dogs, there’s always dogs! And people coming in and out all the time. Family-wise, we’re all there, so it’s a lovely base for Granny and Grandpa to be – for us to come and see them up there, where you just have room to breathe and run."
Wartime anthems, songs from musicals and even a number by a boyband member featured in the Queen’s list of favourite songs. As part of a BBC Radio 2 documentary, her top 10 was revealed and it included Oklahoma by Howard Keel, The White Cliffs of Dover by Vera Lynn, Cheek to Cheek by Fred Astaire and Sing, by Gary Barlow and the Military Wives’ Choir.
"The Queen loves the theatre and musicals like Showboat, Oklahoma! and Annie Get your Gun," her cousin, Lady Elizabeth Anson said prior to the Queen's passing.
"These were the tunes that remained in one's head and were very danceable to… the Queen is a fantastic dancer. She’s got great rhythm."
Watch: Remembering the late HM Queen Elizabeth II