Tuesday, September 20, 2011

High Tea at The Victoria Room

For Mother’s Day, I got my mum a voucher for us two to have high tea at the Victoria Room in Darlinghurst, Sydney. In a belated manner, we only used the voucher last weekend. On another note, I thought that I bought her a voucher for the high tea at the Queen Victoria Building, as I was tricked by the name Victoria Room. Initially, I was annoyed at myself for this, but I guess it allowed my mum to ‘expand her repertoire’ in high tea around Sydney.

The menu at the Victoria Room included:

Chicken and Wild Herbs
Cucumber, Crème Fraiche and Dill
Smoked Salmon, Rocket, Lemon, Capers
Watercress, Celery, Walnuts and Goats Curd

Assorted Sweeties
Dark Chocolate Cup with Chocolate Mousse, Cream and fresh Raspberries
Classic baked Lemon Cheesecake
Delicious Seasonal Fruit short crust Tartlet
Red Velvet cupcake topped with Creamed Cheese Icing

Scones and Conserve
Date and Plain Scones served with Organic Strawberry Conserve and Chantilly Cream

I had a China Sencha Green Tea and my mum had a skim latte.

The atmosphere of the Victoria Room was unique and differed from the tea houses that we previously frequented. As opposed to European-style tea houses, where the rooms would be filled with light and dominated by the colours white or gold, the Victoria Room was dark, intimate, wooden and a bit Asian. It would be an ideal location for my type of a girl’s night out, as it was pretty, had unique décor and had plants everywhere.

We went to the Victoria Room with high expectations for the food. Our expectations were well supported from having tea at the Bather's Pavilion (Sydney), The Ritz (London), the Langham Hotel (Hong Kong) and the QVB (Sydney). We wanted the food to be made in-house, fresh and delicate. Unfortunately, it didn’t live up to all of our expectations.

The bread was soft and all the fillings had the right amount of creaminess, saltiness and crunch. However, a few times we found that the fillings weren’t evenly spread on the sandwich. For example, my mother got a sandwich where there were only walnuts in the last corner of the sandwich. I know we were being fussy, but high tea is one place where we should be able to do this.

Dark chocolate cup – the chocolate was tempered, shiny and had a good crunch. However, we questioned whether the cup was made in store or outsourced. Though, the fillings (chocolate mouse, cream and fresh raspberries) were perfect.
Cheesecake – I wasn’t amazed. It could’ve be enhanced with bits of lemon rind.
Cupcake – I love cupcakes but this one was much too sweet. It was just pretty.

They were fine but a bit too bready for my liking. I think scones should be light and melt in your mouth.

My major disappointment is in the tea. Green tea is not meant to be brewed by boiling water nor for very long. By the time the tea got to my table, it was burnt and bitter. I also had one of those tea pots where I couldn’t remove the tea leaves from the hot water and so the tea leaves would continue to infuse in the water until I skulled my current cup.

While I may have given harsh criticisms of the Victoria Room, I still had a good time. I just wouldn’t go again!

The Victoria Room
235 Victoria St

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