Everything about One&Only Cape Town screams extravagance in lofty proportions and the Afternoon Tea experience is no exception.
The ceiling high glass windows give a magnificent view of Table Mountain and the hidden islands which harbour the Spa and the luxurious rooms. The décor was nothing short of glorious, the couches and chairs looked opulently comfortable, the bar was lavishly stocked with elegant liquor bottles and the artwork was brilliantly harmonious with the resplendent lobby of the hotel. The setting itself was an indulgence before the delicious feast that was about to come.
The Afternoon tea is served at Vista Bar & Lounge, situated in the heart of the hotel at R520 per person between 2.30pm and 5.30pm.
Which tea will you choose?
Tea lovers will be more than satisfied. The Afternoon Tea experience offers over 35 kinds of Premium Nigiro Teas sourced from China, Japan, Sri Lanka…basically all over the world.
We started with the Flower Gate, a unique Chinese artistic show tea, grown in the province of Yunan. The bud blooms into a mesmerising flower and brews a gloriously golden cup of tea. This amazingly floral tea with a subtle and elevating taste sets the tone for what was about to come.
The standout was the Gunpowder Green & Mint tea, which we had as a palate cleanser between the savoury and sweet treats. Refreshing and invigorating at first, leaving a smooth and clean aftertaste. Easily one of the best green teas that I have ever had.
You should definitely try as many teas as you can as they are all delectable. From the inviting Strawberry and Vanilla Rooibos to the comforting Chamomile infusion, you will definitely find your prefect match.
This experience is nothing like your traditional afternoon tea.
Executive Sous Chef Kyle Hickman was our host and he gave us an insightful behind-the-scenes of how they arrived to this beautiful stand of decadence. It took 2 months of research and development to create this masterpiece of an Afternoon Tea.
The Instagram-worthy O&O stand came with 6 desserts and 6 savoury treats, more than enough to satisfy any craving you might have on the day.
The savoury treats consisted of a rainbow of textures, colours and flavours. I went for the Chicken Mayo Dome on A Beetroot Bun first, the deep red of the bun contrasting with the chicken mayo caught my eye. I am not a fan of chicken mayo sandwiches but if there was ever one to change my mind it would be this one. The light and soft bun topped with a delicious chicken mayo and sun-dried tomato were a match made in heaven.
The seafood lover in me was delighted as there were plenty of seafood options. First up was the bright and tangy salmon mousse on an edgy charcoal bread. The Fishcakes arrived slightly after the stand. Invitingly warm and golden, I had to try one as soon as they hit the table. Fresh, crunchy and flavourful; a simple dish executed perfectly.
The standout item from the savoury section was definitely the Reinvented Prawn Sushi on fried bread. They were to die for. It was sophisticated and yet it had all the aspects that we love about comfort food; hearty, rich and a deep umami taste that will bring you back to the sushi roots of this creation.
We made the transition between sweet and savoury with scones.
These ones descended straight from the heavens in an unpretentious brown paper bag. Flawless in every sense of the word. The mouth-watering golden crust with a rich buttery aroma hid a soft, cakey and perfectly balanced tender crumb. I would rather name this review The Scones and Afternoon tea at One&Only Cape Town. The berry jam and cream only elevated these little balls of pure happiness which could mend any broken heart.
I would recommend the afternoon tea experience at One&Only Cape Town just for these delightful scones.
But bear with me, it was only the start.
Straight after the scones, was The Baked Blueberry Cheesecake on Chocolate Lamington. The glossy finish was gorgeous and the deep purple colour made them irresistible. The cheesecake had a nice subtle tanginess which complemented the chocolate lamington base beautifully. Up next was the exotic Kalamansi mousse which had a bright and refreshing citrusy taste, halfway between a naartjie and a lime.
We stuck with the fruity desserts and the next one was the Caramelized white chocolate mousse with caramelized apple centre and a spiced crumb, delicate yet bursting with flavour, the taste matched the expertly crafted appearance of this dessert.
We then moved on to (Yes I know, it’s a lot) The Mango and Vanilla Pannacotta; for someone who loves mangoes, I was not disappointed. It was like biting into a juicy ripe mango fresh off a tree, bursting with sweetness and natural fragrance of the fruit and it paired with the gentle vanilla to deliver an excitingly fruity and tropical bite.
We are now at the top of the stand crowned with two striking desserts, The Raspberry Religieux that, in my opinion, embodied the luxury and glamour of this Afternoon tea. As well as the Chocolate Macarons, that rivalled the famous macarons of Ladurée in terms of taste, texture and decadence. Certainly one of the most beautifully crafted and delicious macarons I’ve ever had.
Everything about the experience was amazing and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who can afford this luxurious indulgence as it is worth every cent! From the incredible selection of teas to the scones your taste buds will go into a sensory overdrive and you will be at your last bite without noticing it. The service was worthy of what you would expect from such a renowned hotel, waiters catering for your every needs and incredibly knowledgeable about what they are serving to all guests.
I still have dreams of this Afternoon Tea at One&Only Cape Town and can’t wait to go back.
ONE&ONLY CAPE TOWN
Dock Rd, V & A Waterfront
021 431 5888