In Short: One of the very best high tea experiences in Sydney. Refined atmosphere, impeccable service, and thoughtful flavours.
Scaling the heights of Sydney’s High Tea peaks can lead you down many a mountain path, but once in the rarefied air of Sydney’s very best High Tea experiences, you could easily be sipping with Sir Hillary himself. Finding the Everest of High Tea in Sydney can take some doing, but I think we might have found a strong contender at The Langham Sydney High Tea room.
Maybe even more than most other food experiences, High Tea really is about the ambiance. You can’t think of High Tea without visions of elegant London tea rooms, Wedgwood china, and the tinkle of piano keys intermingling with whispered conversations. The Langham Sydney High Tea has executed the subtle design of this space to perfection. The bright and refined feel of the Palm Court tea room is so inviting and relaxing that you can’t wait to find a quiet table with a comfy chair and sit sipping for hours.
We’re here on a weekday afternoon to avoid the weekend busy period and the room ebbs and flows with all types of High Tea devotees. What’s most interesting is how High Tea has been embraced by all ages, including a new generation looking to practice the fine art of “hoity-toity tea-totalling”.
As with most High Tea sittings, The Langham Sydney offers a set menu, with options for dietary requirements. The choice of quality teas or coffees is impressive, but we break with Earl Grey tradition and choose a Masala Chai. As soon as the subtly sweet and floral chai fills its delicate Wedgwood cup, the impressive three-tiered stand adorned with sweets and savouries makes its entrance.
Doing my best to be good and eat my savouries before sweets, my fingers pinch the fluffy, petite triangle of a Honey ham & fromage sandwich. Simple and light with a richness of flavour is what greets the mouth. I’m in for the next little pillow of crust-free daintiness and this time it’s a Christmas turkey, cranberry & alfalfa sandwich. It’s a lot of Christmas memories in a deliciously delicate package. The slow cooked mini lamb pie is a highlight as the firm, but flaky crust releases tender pieces of succulent lamb in a light, fragrant jus. One of the hidden gems in the savoury offering is the chicken parfait, toasted brioche & red current gel. The sweetness of the brioche is a brilliant pairing with the richness of the parfait and tang of the red current. Top this all off with a morsel of rare roasted beef on Parisian croute with horseradish jam and cream, and you could easily be in a Parisian tea salon. Just outstanding!
Ok. Onto the sweeties! You must…I mean must, start with the signature vanilla scones. It would just be wrong to do anything else. These moist pillows of warming sweetness are accented with juicy sultanas and are a worthy base for decadent homemade jam and cream.
On to the top deck of the tower of High Tea power. We kick it off with the Mont Blanc tart, sporting meringue and vanilla chantilly. Next, I spy a little ball of joy hiding amongst the assembled bounty of bliss and pop it on my tongue. Creamy white chocolate shell snaps to release a river of brandy sweetness as this little truffle charms the taste buds. Being that we’re in Australia, you just know a lamington is going to make an appearance, but I promise that the Langham’s cranberry & cinnamon lamington cake will change your definition of what this Aussie tradition can aspire to. Rounding out the ensemble are a gold dusted sticky date macaroon and a gingerbread snowflake with clementine marshmallow. The top tier of this High Tea stack really lives up to its billing with a kaleidoscope of refined flavours that not only take you on a sweet tooth’s dream journey, but also brilliantly complement each other at every stop.
High Tea at The Langham Sydney has firmly planted its flag atop the highest of High Tea summits in Sydney. The refined atmosphere, impeccable service, and thoughtful flavours set it apart for those seeking a notch above the increasingly mediocre High Tea offerings throughout Sydney. The list of truly excellent High Tea experiences might be narrowing, but The Langham Sydney is definitely on that list.