COSMOPOLITAN HIGH TEA
Five star hotels have embraced the elegance of the traditional English afternoon High Tea in force with most now offering a modern twist on the typical three-tiered platter of divine delights. So what makes the Stamford Plaza Hotel stand out from the crowd? The way chef Ketan Seth crafts the multi-cultural demographics of Melbourne into his signature recipes.
The Stamford Plaza Hotel’s High Tea is a cosmopolitan mix of European, Asian and Middle Eastern influences that reflect Seth’s career with some of the world’s most renowned hotels including The Langham Melbourne, Crown Melbourne and Dubai’s Raffles hotels and The Atlantis.
The royal treatment began the moment we were seated at our elegant yet simply set table by the window, with a glass of Moet Imperial poured for our consumption. As we sipped our sparkling ‘welcome’ beverage, our tealeaf infused plungers were brought to us fragrant and steaming along with our servings of petit fours, scones and desserts.
Of particular appeal was the way the bottom savoury tier was weightier than your typical High Tea offerings, with the portions getting smaller or ‘lighter’ the higher and sweeter you went. Perfect for a more healthy indulgence. Larger-than-usual finger sandwiches in various flavours adorned the bottom plate.
Next up were the scones – smaller than grandma’s baking but more refined with plain and orange flavoured served with double whipped cream and Seth’s home made berry preserve. One tier up and you were delivered your seasonal sweets. My favourite? The chocolate dipped strawberries designed to resemble tuxedos.
Not a huge fan of overtly sweet desserts, the Raspberry marbled petite gateaux with its soft mousse texture infused with berry tartness was refreshing on the palate. The marrying together of flavours such as pineapple and black pepper maroons added a point of difference, especially to a trained palate.
Not once throughout the afternoon, were our glasses left empty with the kind staff topping up our beverages in keen fashion. And if the tea, coffee and Moet aren’t indulgence enough, there’s a list of cocktails to choose from too; A Pimms Cup, Apply and Blackberry Mojito or a Belliniti.
If you care to know the history behind the Stamford High Tea, it takes its inspiration from Sir Stamford Raffles, who was a gifted visionary of the British Empire in the Far East in colonial times. Sir Stamford himself knew the importance of taking time out to relax in the afternoon and enjoy conversation with friends and colleagues over High Tea.
And it’s no different today, where it’s equally as valuable to take some time and enjoy the traditional afternoon High Tea experience, shared and enjoyed with family and friends. To add even more extravagance to this special ritual, the hotel has added luxury to this revered past time by featuring your choice of Moet Champagne.
But High Tea At the Stamford Plaza Hotel isn’t just for the grown ups, with munchkins under four eating for free and children between five and 12-years-old half price. What a classic and enjoyable way to educate your little ones on such a celebrated activity first introduced back in the 1700s.
When you dine on High Tea it’s all about location. And built in the Parisian end of the city, the experience continues on after you leave the Stamford Plaza Hotel to peruse the shops and boutiques. So don’t just make it an afternoon experience, take advantage of the inner city vibe and spend the day soaking up all the luxury on offer.
The Stamford Plaza Melbourne
Cost: High Tea $49 per person or $59 including a glass of Moet & Chandon. Children 0-4 free, 5-12years of age 50% off. Prices are correct at the time of publish but are subject to change. Please contact the venue for further details.
When: The Stamford Plaza high tea is only available Saturday and Sunday from 1pm to 4pm.
Address: 111 Little Collins Street, Melbourne, VIC, Australia
Bookings Essential: To reserve your table call (03) 9659 1592 or email: [email protected]