The Best Places for High Tea in Melbourne
Initially reserved for the upper class, afternoon tea became a social ritual for the masses when tea arrived in Australia with the first fleet in 1788. Today, enjoying a cuppa with a biccy is a favourite Australian pastime, but for a spot of elegance why not visit one of these six rooms and infuse your afternoon with relaxation.
Hotel Restaurant, Tea
Steeped in tradition, The Windsor Hotel has been serving afternoon tea since 1883. A quintessential Melbourne experience, the affair begins with a glass of French sparkling wine creating a sense of occasion. Designated weekday and weekend are served on a three-tiered silver stand and include savoury pastries, ribbon sandwiches, a selection of French pastries and the hotel’s famous traditional and sultana scones. To quench your thirst there is a choice of 11 teas, many of which are brewed specially for The Windsor.
The Waiting Room
Cocktail Bar, Hotel Restaurant, Coffee Shop, Tea , Cocktails, $$$
Located in the lobby of Crown Towers, The Waiting Room oozes elegance inspired by post-war European grandeur. The sophisticated high tea includes hot savouries such as Duck and quince pithiviers, an assortment of sandwiches, scones and a selection of pastries including a chocolate tart with orange crèmeux all of which is served on a three-tiered silver stand. Accompanying the menu is a range of Jing Tea and Vittoria Coffee. To finish, indulge in a selection of Mignardises.
Hopetoun Tea Room
Tea Room, Tea , Australian, $$$
Named after Lady Hopetoun, the Hopetoun Tea Room has been a fixture of Melbourne’s Royal Arcade since 1891. Walk past on any given day, and you’ll be met by a never ending queue of people peering, jaws ajar, at the devilishly decadent display case stacked with an assortment of cakes. High Tea is offered seven days a week and includes fresh scones, a complimentary drink and a three-tiered stand filled with savoury treats, Petit Fours and fruit and berries. Vegetarian and Gluten Free Options are also available. In addition, Hopetoun Tea Room is open for breakfast and lunch.
Cocktail Bar, Sandwich Shop, Cocktails, $$$
While Madame Brussels doesn’t host classic high teas, she does throw cheeky garden parties on the rooftop. Follow the pink garden path as it leads you through the AstroTurf and onto the terrace complete with curly wurly patio furniture. Relax as waiters in Wimbledon white serve a selection of old-fashioned sandwiches, parmesan sables with goats’ cheese, beetroot and orange relish, warm scones, petite cupcakes, mini pavlovas and other scrumptious treats along with pots of tea and a refreshing jug of Madame’s ‘DD Cup.’
Courtesy Madame Brussels
The Tea Room NGV
Tea Room, Tea
With a menu that changes to reflect the themes of the galleries major exhibitions, The Tea Room at NGV is almost as awe-inspiring as the exhibitions themselves. Watch the afternoon pass by as you devour savory beetroot macaroons, crust less sandwiches, scones with blackcurrant and passionfruit jam and the most gorgeous éclairs while overlooking the main foyer. The Team Room also features an extensive tea menu including their house blend mix of Earl Grey and English breakfast.
The Tea Salon
Tea Room, Tea , $$$
Fit for a princess, The Tea Salon is a pastel dollhouse inside the Emporium where treats are served on fine China, and the champagne is always flowing. Their Classic High Tea includes a three-tiered-stand with gourmet ribbon sandwiches, dainty sweet treats and a scone of your choice alongside a pot of Loose Leaf Tea or Espresso Coffee. There is the option to upgrade to a Sparkling High Tea or Couture High Tea. The Tea Salon has 28 varieties of loose, leaf tea on offer ranging from flavoured black teas to herbal infusions, fruit blends and oolong.
Courtesy The Tea Salon