Holiday Inspired Afternoon Tea at the Secret Garden Tea Company

During December, there are many restaurants that offer holiday-inspired menus, and what gets me excited is the beautiful and elegant afternoon tea sets. This year, I visited the Secret Garden Tea Company in Kerrisdale, and it was my first time trying this place. It recently launches a holiday high tea set, as well as introduces the holiday edition tea, Buttertart Tea. The tea set is available in vegan and gluten-free, which takes care customers’ dietary restriction.

The Secret Garden Tea Company recently moved to a new location, which is 1 minute away from the old location. And it is way more spacious and bright, which I can easily find them even in the dark. Once I entered the shop, I immediately got attracted by the kids section, decorated with mini chairs and table and a bookshelf filled with children bookS.

Before entering the dining area, there is a retail area which features tea leaves, pastries, and tea-infused merchandise.

The Holiday High Tea Set is available until the end of December, and menu items will be customized and different for vegan and gluten-free versions.

Holiday Tea Set / $45 per person

While we are waiting for the afternoon tea set to arrive, we chose our tea for the night. Although there isn’t an extensive tea menu, there is a still a good variety of black tea, green tea, and even caffeine-free tea. They also offer tea-infused alcoholic beverage, which you can order on the side. I chose the Buckingham Palace, and it is one of the bestseller with earl grey and jasmine. Eva ordered a Creamy Earl Grey, and I prefer this one more as the tea is more floral and aromatic.

Buckingham Palace / earl grey, jasmine

Our appetizer first arrived, and it is a Cauliflower Veloute Soup with cheese crisp on the side. It is a soothing hot soup, which is best for the rainy weather. I think the cheese crisp is slightly overpowering, as it is quite salty. Nevertheless, I am already excited for the afternoon tea set.

Cauliflower Veloute Soup / cheese crisp

The Holiday High Tea set features four savoury treats, which are Secret Garden Egg Pinwheels, House Roasted Turkey with Apple Cranberry Relish, Triple Cream Brie on Mini Sage Rolls, and Quebec Tourtieres with Homemade Smoky Ketchup. Though it has less varieties compared to other high tea sets I tried, the portion is more generous than others. My favourite is the Quebec Tourtieres with Homemade Smoky Ketchup. It is flavourful, but it pairs surprisingly well with my choice of tea. The tea eases the heaviness from the pastry. I am actually hoping to see more holiday spirits being incorporated in the savoury treats, but instead they focus more on the sweets.

Compared to the savouries, there are a varieties of the sweets. On the second tier, we have petit Cranberry Scone and Gingerbread Scone, pairing with jam and devonshire cream. I found the scone too dry, but Mr. thinks it tastes much better when enjoying it warm. He prefers the gingerbread scone, but I like the classic cranberry scone more.

Petit Cranberry Scone & Gingerbread Scone / jam, devonshire cream

On the top tier, it is where it gets super festive. It features the Tangy Mini Lemon Tart, Cranberry and Crystallized Ginger Cheesecake, and Double Chocolate Gingerbread Truffle. I love the Double Chocolate Gingerbread Truffle the most, as it has a subtle gingerbread flavor, it is not too sweet. I chose the Tangy Mini Lemon Tart to end the meal, as its tartness gives a refreshing note and eases out the sweetness from the other desserts.

Tangy Mini Lemon Tart / Cranberry & Crystallized Ginger Cheesecake / Double Chocolate Gingerbread Truffle

Overall Impression

It is my first time visiting the Secret Garden Tea Company, and I love its elegant, classy decor and interior. The Holiday High Tea set is $45/person, which is reasonable for the amount of food you get. However, I did find that the food selection is limited. Items such as Quebec Tourtieres with Homemade Smoky Ketchup and Double Chocolate Gingerbread Truffle are my favourites. The Secret Garden Tea Company is also one of the few shops that offer takeouts for high tea, which is best for customers who want to host a party at home. The December Holiday Tea Set is only available until the end of December, so make sure you book before it is too late!

Taste : 3.5/5 • Service: 4.5/5 • Ambiance: 5/5 • Quality-Price: 4/5

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