An elegant afternoon spent High Tea-ing

Afternoon tea were always excuses for me to snack, whether it’s getting a cheeky cheese cracker or a guilty chocolate treat, I can always find food at home to satisfy my not-actually-very-hungry stomach. However, I started noticing the concept of high tea after seeing pictures of assortments of beautiful baking on flawless tea and plate sets. As the appreciation of beauty is universal, I can’t help but let those images etch in my mind. The desire to be that poster girl and enjoy the seemingly very elegant high tea gnawed my heart, and I was dying for a perfect opportunity to go. Finally, mother’s day arrived, and I thought, yes I’m going to treat my mum to high tea at the Langham! However, I was taken back by the average $69 per person on the weekends. As much as I was willing to splurge, I thought keeping it below a modest $100 would be good enough for a first experience in High tea.

With this in mind, I started researching more and was pleasantly surprised by the number of hotels that offer High Tea in Auckland. Eventually, I locked down High Tea for two at Stamford Plaza. We arrived at around 11 am and was quickly sat down underneath the large leather chairs with a small tea table between us. The difference between the set up of High Tea table and a regular dining table was stark. Soon after, though, we quickly let ourselves indulge in an unlimited supply of coffee and tea. I loved all the tea, but I limited myself to 2 cups as I needed to save some room for food! I slowly got used to sitting at the couch-like chair and enjoying the gentle piano music. A key thing to remember that you have to go with someone who you would love to spend a long time chatting to! High Tea is the perfect time to catch up with a bestie, spend some quality time with mum or sister, or it could even be a nice date treat! We had waited around 40 minutes before our tea was ready. Although I have to admit, the tea and the beautifully presented array of food was worth the wait!

A tall stand consisting of three tiers of an exquisite selection of tea time delights served on the China plates. This was my first impression when the food arrived. I was excited and nervous at the same time. Hunger pushes me to reach for the cheese scone, while my manners and self-consciousness underneath the dazzling chandeliers told me not to. In the end, we decided to start from the bottom tier, which was made up of some wonderfully crafted savoury treats. We didn’t get the usual sandwich here. Instead, there were potato-top tarts, and my personal favourite, a salmon croquette. The middle-tier is your traditional date scone, served with cream and jam. It was simple and delicious! The scone was airy, and oh, I just love everything with cream! As a dessert-lover, the top tier was definitely my favourite. There was mousse, cheesecake, and a chocolate tart. High Tea may seem like it is light in portion. However, trust me, looks are deceiving. 3 cuppas and 3 tiers of munchies later, I was stuffed. But my heart was also content. Mum loved her mother’s day present, and we cannot wait to do it all over again! I think maybe $70 person at the Langham could be worth the price!

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