Monday, March 14, 2011

Afternoon Tea at The Fairmont Pacific Rim

We bought a Social Shopper coupon for Afternoon Tea for Two at The Fairmont Pacific Rim for $35 and decided to use it one weekend. The coupon was a good deal as it would normally cost $70 for two people. After reading that they serve "sushi-style" sandwiches for tea, I wanted to try it! This certainly didn't sound like typical afternoon tea with the egg salad sandwiches, pastries and scones.

The tea at Pacific Rim is served in their lobby of the hotel. It's a spacious area with cozy chairs, a fireplace and a Fazioli piano! That piano was gorgeous! I loved the design that is etched on the inside portion of the cover. Apparently, that piano cost $225 000! If I had that kind of money, I would buy a piano that looked like that! 

After we were seated, we were given a small box with the different tea selections. The tea leaves were in a small glass bottle where you can open up and take a whiff before deciding which tea to have. All the teas smelled really nice, but I decided to have the Vanilla Roboois. My boyfriend couldn't decide at first... but he finally decided to get the same tea as I did.

A selection of teas from T

When our tea arrived, it was in a tiny little iron teapot and the server filled the teapots with hot water after setting down the pots. Our server mentioned that the tea should steep for about 4 minutes before drinking. After letting it steep, I took a sip of the tea. I really liked the tea. The tea was fragrant and had a slight vanilla taste to it. It was a comforting tasting tea.

Tiny and cute teapots that were quite heavy to lift...

While sipping our teas, the first item to come were the scones with jam and devonshire cream (clotted cream).


The scones were really fresh (still warm on the inside!) and was really good with the jam and devonshire cream. I love devonshire cream...(it's really really bad for you...). Sooo yummy with the jam and scones.

Also on the plate, there was a side of fresh fruit which you don't often see with afternoon tea.

After finishing the scones, the tier of sandwiches and sweets came. On the bottom tier, there was the sandwiches and the "sushi-style" sandwiches and on the top tier, it was all the desserts.

2 Tier - Sandwiches and Dessert

Left: Citrus prawn with julienne vegetables on rye
Middle: Chicken tandoori on a herb focaccia with peppers and mango chutney
Right: Truffle egg salad with pea shoots on a brioche

These sandwiches are not like the typical sandwiches that you would find in afternoon tea. Similar to the traditional ones, but with a unique twist. 
I liked the prawn and chicken tandoori sandwiches. Not so much of the egg salad one as it had a bitterness to it which probably came from the raw pea shoots.

Sushi-Style "Sandwiches"
Left: Miso glazed tofu
Middle: Tuna tataki
Right: Inside-out California roll

It is a bit strange to see sushi at tea. But given that the restaurant, Oru, is an Asian Fusion one, it isn't that strange afterall...

All the sushi was average. I didn't find anything special about the way that it tasted. It is sad to say that the sushi was my least favourite out of all the sandwiches.

And lastly... dessert!! We were getting quite full by the time we worked our way up the tier. The sandwiches may seem tiny, but they're quite filling!

Top Left: Matcha green tea & lychee cake
Bottom Left: Fresh berry tart
Bottom Right: Blueberry muffin
Top Middle: Chocolate & coffee macaroons
Top Right: Chocolate ganache with chocolate crispy bits

All the dessert/sweets was really good! The green tea cake was light and the berry tart was fresh. The best one was the chocolate gnache with the crispy chocolate bits! Chocolate-y and not too sweet.

Overall Impressions: I liked the lounge area and I liked the tea... My boyfriend really liked the tea! He drank so much of the vanilla roboois that he started to get too comfortable and almost fell asleep in those chairs! The sandwiches were mediocre, but the dessert was good. The service was good as our teapots were always filled with hot water. I'm just glad that instead of spending $70, I only spent $35 on tea. $70 is a bit of a hefty price to pay for tea. Well, I guess it makes sense to charge that much since it is at the Fairmont... But if I were to have afternoon tea at a Fairmont, it won't be at this one, but at the Hotel Vancouver one on Georgia street. I liked the food better at that one.

The Fairmont Pacific Rim - Lobby Lounge
1038 Canada Pl
Vancouver, BC
Phone: 604.695.5300  
Lobby Lounge at Fairmont Pacific Rim on Urbanspoon

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