Alluvial (Intercontinental Hotel Melbourne)
- On the Stand:
- Buttermilk Scones with Darbo Jams, Lemon Curd, Double Cream
- Ham with Jarlsberg Cheese, Tomato Relish on Swiss White
- Cucumber & Tzatziki on Light Rye
- Salmon & Cream Cheese Bagel
- Asparagus And Ricotta Quiche Tartlet
- Beef Wellington
- Smoked Cof Croquette with Red Pepper Coulis
- Dessert Buffet:
- 54.5% Callebaut Chocolate Fountain
- Buttercream Carrot Cake
- Chocolate Brownie with Peantu Butter & Walnut
- Chocolate Mousse & Crushed Hazelnut Pots
- Velvet Peach & Mango Cheesecake
- Chia Seed & Strawberry Pots
- Orange Tea Cake
- Jelly Fruit Salad Pots
- TWG Tea:
- English Breakfast
- French Earl Grey
- Moroccan Mint
- Silver Moon
- Perrier-Jouet Grand Brut Champagne
Situated within the elegant and airy common areas of the Intercontinental , our high tea was held at the beautiful and classic Alluvial restaurant. Neatly laid out on all the tables were an assortment of some of the most perfect roses ever, vintage cups for your tea, and elegant champagne glasses. With an excitable yet tranquil atmosphere, coupled with a live strings trio, the wow factor of this beautiful high tea venue never really weaned on me, from beginning to end.
Onto the food then, we decided to tackle the triple-layered cake stand from top to bottom. Starting off with the Buttermilk Scones, I simply have to say these were THE BEST scones I've ever had. Served fresh and still warm, the slight crunch of the outer embodied a fluffy and buttery inner. With the perfect balance of moisture and hardness, these scones were very enjoyable in solitary, but were made divine by the Darbo strawberry jam coupled with the rich and airy double cream. Thanks to the secret family recipe of head chef Clint Jackson, there simply exists no better scone in my memory, and I savoured every last bite of this perfect, flawless gem.
Moving onto the savoury plate, we enjoyed the Smoked Cod Croquette. Chomping down on the crunchy crumbed outer, you are rewarded with a unapologetically bold and smokey flavour of the soft minced cod. This was well complemented by their red pepper coulis, though I feel a tangier sauce could've brought the dish to an even higher level.
Down to the bottom plate, and what unanimously gained a nodding approval was the Salmon and Cream Cheese Bagel. Exceptionally soft and tender, the salmon was fresh and of high quality. With the smooth cream cheese, the flavours well balanced and the softness of the toppings juxtaposed the chewiness of the poppyseed bagel.
Despite being quite full at this point, making our way through three layers of food, we couldn't say no to the beautiful dessert spread. With a wide variety of choices ranging from simple fruits and donuts, to the beautiful cakes and of course the extravagant Chocolate Fountain, it was clearly an invitation to indulge, making it a living dream for anyone with a sweet tooth.
Our favourite of the plethora of choices included the Velvet Peach & Mango Cheesecake, which was incredibly smooth and creamy without being overly dense. Coupled with the soft biscuit base that gave it a great buttery flavour, this was perhaps the best cheesecake I've ever sampled.
We also particularly enjoyed the Orange Teacake, which had the perfect balance of sweet and tangy. The bold, fresh taste of orange, combined with the moist cake, made for an incredible sensory experience.
And let's not forget the colourful Macarons, which were the softest, and most delicate specimen I've ever come across. Without being overly sweet, a sin which many others tend to exhibit, these macarons carried beautiful depth in flavour and simply melted away in your mouth with each bite. With each colour exhibiting different flavours including strawberry and blackcurrant, I couldn't help myself but sample all of them.
We finished off the evening with some Silver Moon and French Earl Grey by TWG. Brewed to perfection, the initial lightness and the subsequent subtle aftertaste, these were the perfect accompaniment to the plethora of sweets on offer. Not that I am complaining though.
While they certainly weren't bad by any standards, we found the other items decidedly unspectacular, but only when compared to how awestruck we were by the scones and cakes.
The impeccable service, coupled with the amazing food and drinks, all hosted in a beautiful venue, made for perhaps one of the best high tea experiences I've ever attended.
For a relaxed and indulgent afternoon, full of olden-day comforts and delectable food, I can think of no better way to celebrate than High Tea at Alluvial.
Would Penguin Eat Again?
Absolutely. I simply cannot wait for them to officially launch on 21st January 2017, as I will definitely be back for more of those divine scones, and more.
We'd like to thank Intercontinental Hotel Melbourne for inviting us to the launch of their new high tea experience at Alluvial.