The Empress in Victoria has the most elegant afternoon tea! During the long weekend, InsecureGirl, FragileBoy, M and I decided to go to Victoria and explore the sights and sounds of Victoria! Even with the 1 hour of sleep we got earlier during the night, this did not bother our trip…not even the 5% amount of oil left in my car ( it eventually started flashing -61…but at least the car didn’t break down).
We drove around finding parking for the day and found the cheapest option EVER. Take this as a very good tip if you ever want to drive to Victoria!!! Park at the Valet at The Empress and say you are going to Afternoon Tea, they will not charge you since the Valet is for the people staying overnight. We just tipped them after leaving the car there for the whole day! If you are just walking around downtown and doing a day trip here, this saves you a lot of money!
We went in our “business smart” dress code as instructed on the website, but we soon found out we were dressed up a bit too much since there are a lot of tourists going for Afternoon tea in their t-shirts and shorts.
The décor of the room was very elegant and you could kinda feel a chill as you drank your tea because all the furniture and décor was so dated. Even walking past the elevators felt a bit eerie because they were so old. Apparently, there’s a rumor where the hotel is haunted (GASP!).
As we sat down and was greeted by our lovely waitress, she explained how the afternoon tea works and what we should be expecting. We choose a type of tea – the Empress Blend, which is made especially for the Empress. Which I find very hyped up because it just tastes like red tea.
Before the tiers of food came, they gave us seasonal fruit with whipped cream on top. It was a very nice beginning to the meal. The seasonal fruit was strawberries!
Next came the tiers of food, even though it didn’t look like a lot of food, if you ate slowly you will surely be filled. We started at the bottom with the sandwiches.
There was a curry sandwich, carrot sandwich, egg salad croissant, salmon pinwheel sandwich and mushroom crostini. I think my favorites were the curry sandwich and the mushroom crostini. M went nuts over the egg salad croissant. Apparently its very hard to make such a miniature croissant and have all the ingredients work really well together.
The second tier were scones with shipped butter and jars of jam. Embedded in the scones were raisins and had a very nice rich taste to it. It was well made but you can tell there was a lot of fat to this scone. It was quite filling and probably was the item that stuffed us the most. The scone was not particularly overly enjoyable or too exciting.
The last tier and probably the tier that is most interesting to devour! It came with a strawberry meringue tart, sugar cookies, tulip chocolate Ganache with candied blue berries, checkered cake covered in fondant, and greentea cheesecake.
When we finished and asked for the bill, the waitress gave us a gift of complementary Empress Blend Tea which was a very nice touch and made the afternoon a bit more special! I guess that had to do that because the bill came to a shocking $200+ for 4 people. That probably came out to be $65 per person after tax and tips. (OUCH!)
The experience of going to a super nice afternoon tea location was very nice, but probably overpriced. After this experience, I would not go again because I don’t think it was worth the amount of money we paid. Don’t get me wrong, the food was good, it was a bit expensive for my taste. Next time perhaps I will go to the Secret Garden or The Market for some High Tea for a cheaper price.
Check out the site: http://www.fairmont.com/empress/GuestServices/Restaurants/AfternoonTea.htm