The notion most people have of high teas is that they’re precious events… tables covered in doilies & groups of woman gathered round gossiping through the afternoon. Well I’m a tattooed, boot wearing, Texas-born male ( )and I’ll come out and say it – I love high teas!
Well maybe there are some doilies… but the great thing about high teas, besides of course the good tea, is the food you’ll find at them… particularly the high teas in Asia. They’ll feature a sprawling buffet with regional food from all over the world.
We were recently invited back to the Regent Hotel (host location of Iggy’s and the wonderful Basilico’s Brunch) to sample something new they’re trying out. Instead of doing a standard hotel international spread for their high tea, the Regent opted to do a themed tea.
From 20 November to 6 December, 2009 they did the “Best of Britain” promotion. Seems fitting with the high tea concept. They changed the food menu up and offered a unique menu inspired by seasonal British cuisine. For me it was a perfect chance to not only indulge in a weekend buffet, but also to sample a variety of British treats… some of which I’ve just read about but never tasted.
The menu was exhaustive, so much in fact that I’ll list it at the end of the article.
The meat pies were delicious. The pastry crusts on the dishes featuring crusts were a far cry from the greasy, heavy pie crusts served in typical pubs.
The carving station was lovely as well. The salmon was cooked perfectly and the roasted meat was delicious and tender. Both were served with an assortment of lovely sauces to compliment each meat.
Then of course there were the pastries and treats. This is really the highlight of any good tea… a chance for the pastry chef to flex their fondant and flood the blood sugar of the guests. There were scones, puffs, meringues, cakes, and a wide assortment of British and classic sweet treats. A highlight to all the treats were the fresh fruits both on display and in the pastries. I’m normally more a fan of chocolate desserts, but the apple and rhubarb crumble was a delight. I’m sure many of these will still be on the menu long after this promotion and are worth visiting for.
Another highlight for me, and this might sound trivial, was seeing the chefs out at the start of the tea with their cameras taking pictures of their food and setups. To me this shows a level of pride and accomplishment in their work. They want to remember what they’d accomplished and brag about it later… that to me is a sign of a kitchen excited by the chance to try new things and experiment. Also that they’re happy with the results… I certainly was.
I hope the Regent does more of these promotions in the coming months. A French inspired tea with signature pastries (please do chouxs) and maybe a foie gras station would be nice… I’m just saying
The Regent Hotel, Tea Lounge 1st Floor
1 Cuscaden Road
Telephone: +65 6725 3245/6 (make reservations)
Mon-Friday Tea Time 12 noon to 6pm
Sat-Sunday Tea Time is 1:30-5:30 pm
Fresh Finger Sandwiches
Cream Cheese and Cucumber on White Toast
Smoked Salmon Pistachio Brioche
Ox Tongue with Pickles on Multigrain Toast
McLelland Cheddar on Dark Rye
Egg and Water Cress on White Bread
Mini Rolls with Ham and Stilton Cheese
An assortment of English pies from Topping Pie Company
Spinach and Goat Cheese Tart (absolutely lovely)
Ham and Mushroom Tart
Mushrooms and Chicken Liver Pate with Melba Toast
Organic Seafood “Loch Fyne” Corner
Loch Fyne Organic Smoked Salmon
Loch Fyne Gravlax Rollmops Herring
Marinade Smoked Rainbow Trout
Loch Fyne Bradan Roast Pate
Carvings (Served on Saturdays and Sundays)
Slow Roasted Loch Duart Scottish Salmon with Dill-Sour Cream
Toad in the Hole
Roasted Welsh Lamb with Vegetables, Roasted Potatoes and Gravy served with Golden Mint Jelly and Chili Mustard Relish (Saturdays)
English Sunday Roast (beef), Vegetables, Roasted Potatoes and Gravy (Sundays)
Assorted Leaves with Condiments and Dressing
Cheese and Accompaniments
Cashel Blue Mature Stilton Mini Cheddar Barre Orange Cheddar Rouge Elisabethan Scottish Double Gloucester Scottish Extra Mature White Cheddar Mature Scottish Cheddar Seriously Cheddar Smokey Red Hot Chili Crackers Fennel Crackers Celery Crackers
Freshly Baked Pastries and Tea Cakes
Yorkshire Cheesecake with Cottage Cheese
Black and White Chocolate Marble Cake
Victoria Sponge Cake with Strawberries and Cream
Sugar Glazed Lemon Cake
Maids of Honour Cake
Chocolate Fudge Cake
Rhubarb and Apple Crumble Berries Tart
Bakewell Tart English Muffins
Fondant Glazed Shortbread Meringues with Strawberries and Cream
Bread and Butter Pudding
Cranberry & Raspberry Jelly
Cheese, Plain and Apple Raisin Scones served with Devonshire Clotted Cream, Lemon Curd and selected Tiptree preserves from Wilkin & Son’s Ltd:
Lemon Curd Blackcurrant Jam Morello Cherry Jam Apricot Jam Peach Jam Orange Marmalade Strawberry Jam
Organic Apricot Jams Organic Raspberry Jams Organic Strawberry Jams Organic Orange Marmalade
Spicy Chicken Wings Satay with Condiments
Wok Fried Rice Noodles