Sunday, 4 November 2012

Afternoon Tea in the Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin

The Menu 

Shot of smoothie to begin

Savoury Sandwich course

Selection of sweets 

Buttermilk scones

Light Blackberry Bavarois 

Coconut Macaroon 

Dark Chocolate Orange Cup

Passionfruit Tea Delice

In the deepest, darkest recessions of exam time I promised myself that I'd go to afternoon tea as a post-exam treat (I also promised myself that I'd get fit but eating fancies and drinking tea is a way more attainable objective). Mam's Birthday seemed like the perfect excuse! Afternoon tea is like being pampered in a spa but instead of massages and face lifts you get posh teas and delicious sweets (an exchange that I am more than happy with). It is a truly relaxing experience. You feel special and just a little bit Kate Middleton (pinkie finger pointed to the sky while holding your tea cup is optional, please leave your corgis at reception).

As you can see from the photographs the presentation is beautiful. The sweet selection was an exquisite array of colour. I was particularly taken by the dark chocolate cups, being completely edible and dainty. The passionfruit delice was probably my favourite to taste. The passionfruit was tart and the green sponge almondy and sweet providing a lovely contrast. The macaroon was dense and chewy, the blackberry bavarois light and packed with flavour. If I had one criticism (and I'm nit-picking now) it would be that I felt the sweets were more like desserts you would get in a restaurant than what my conception of afternoon tea would be. I thought that there would be more baked goods, cakes and biscuits perhaps.

The Shelbourne Hotel is an historical landmark in Dublin, a building that would not be out of place in Paris or London. It is the perfect location for this unique treat.

The sandwich selection 
Mini Shelbourne house Salmon bagels
Egg and cress finger
Cucumber and Light Cream Cheese Finger
Braised Waterford Ham with Mustard

The Sweet Selection 
Passionfruit Delice
Light Blackberry Bavarois
Coconut Macaroon
Dark Chocolate and Orange Cup  
Buttermilk scones with jam and cream

Twenty different teas to choose from 

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