Monday, March 10, 2014

Bubbles and Tea for Melbourne Food and Wine Festival


Yesterday, Tim and I went to the Bubbles and Tea event at Café Vic in the Arts Centre, Melbourne as part of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.  For $45 a head, you received unlimited sparkling wine (bubbles), tea or coffee, a high tea tray and a dessert buffet.

We started with a glass each of Yarra Glen pink sparkling wine:


This was a lovely, sweet drop.  Tim subsequently tried the white version, which he found drier and not as sweet, and much preferred the pink.

Our high tea tray featured two scones each - one plain and one fruit:


I adore the golden glaze on top of the scones. I did find it odd that quite a few people didn't eat the scones, although they are an integral part of a high tea.  The scones could be liberally slathered with berry jam and cream, which was on every table:


On the bottom of our tea tray were two mini meat pies each - one shepherds pie and one beef pie:


My favourite was the shepherds pie with lamb mince and a potato crust.

As a high tea demands, the bottom tier of the tray also featured ribbon sandwiches in chicken and mayo, egg  and lettuce, and salmon with mustard and capers:


My favourite was the salmon; the chicken version was a little too chunky for my liking.  Oddly, the people on the table next door to us ate neither their scones nor their sandwiches, the two key components of a high tea.  It seemed a shame to me, but I guess it's their money and they can do as they please.

If you still had room after the high tea tray had been polished off (I didn't, but I made room), there was an extensive dessert buffet.  I tried a lemon curd filled, meringue topped éclair, a coffee macaron and a crème brulee: 


I was not a fan of the éclair, but I adored the crème brulee with its crunchy top and smooth as silk custard.

The very odd part about this high tea was that the tea part was very hard to procure.  The couple on the table next to us seemed to get coffees out of the blue, and they informed me that they had gone to the counter to order them.  I followed suit and was dismissed with the statement that the waitress in our section would take our order.  Problem was, there was no waitress in our section at all.  After seeing several more people mysteriously procure tea and coffee, I went back to the counter and spoke to a different person, who took my order.  Two cups (no pot) of English breakfast duly arrived after that: 


It would be usual for them to have taken our orders at the table when they delivered the tea trays.  It was therefore a little disappointing to only get tea as the last thing that I had, and only after two attempts to procure it.

Despite the irregularity with the tea service, Tim and I enjoyed our high tea experience. Special mention goes to the waitress who delivered the sparkling wine, who was smiling and friendly, and made us feel welcome. Taking high tea was a lovely way to spend a rather hot Melbourne afternoon, inside in the air conditioning and away from the Moomba crowds.



3 comments:

MoMo & Coco Dessert Correspondents said...

Hmmm high tea is awesome, always. ;)

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

How odd about the tea! My favourite parts of afternoon tea are the scones, sandwiches and tea!

2paw said...

You had me at unlimited!! Very disappointing about the poor tea service, and no pot?? No proper leaves?? Very sad. The scones and the sandwiches are the main part of afternoon tea. At our best High Tea the scones are tiny and high but you get A Lot!!