Five Steps to Ensure the Perfect High Tea
There’s something enchanting about the sound of a high tea room. It’s in the tinkling of teacups, the chime of silverware on butter dishes and the sweet tones of ladies chatting without the interruption of a male voice. Walking into Tea and Niceties (T&N for the purposes of this story) was like being transported to Ladyville.
My beautiful friend Kimmy and I are high tea junkies – in fact you may remember us stealing your scones at the She Brisbane High Tea. Our lovely hosts at T&N on Tamborine Mountain were surprised that we finished all our food, but let me kick off the list and you’ll see we had no choice.
1. Don’t skimp on the savouries
We associate high tea with cake and scones, but I’m a savoury person at heart and I loved T&N’s heart shaped egg and lettuce sandwiches, cheesy pastry triangles and Quiche tartlets.
2. Serve good tea
It seems like a no brainer, but if you have a choice of only English Breakfast and Peppermint, what’s the point of having a tea party? Our T&N package included unlimited pots of tea, and we tried Ginger Kiss, Red Fruit, Christmas and Morning Flower as well as Jasmine with Flowers and Japanese Lime.
3. Make the food in-house
I can always tell when something has been frozen or spent most of its life in the fridge. T&N’s founder still comes in at 4am to make each of the delicate food items from scratch, and they totally won me over. I don’t trust pink cakes in general, but much to my surprise, the little strawberry sponge tower was my favourite item of the day.
4. Have nice staff
When you’re trying to get your lady on, the last thing you need is an indifferent host. Our hostesses Sonia and Jade were so interested and warm that we had a good chat about the history of the tea room, which started as a tiny passion project and flourished into the destination it is today. They also didn’t make us feel weird about finishing all three tiers and seven pots of tea, despite the abundant leftovers at the skinny table next to us (suckers).
5. Make everything pretty
High tea has to be an experience that makes you feel that it’s worth spending a chunk of money on a dainty repast, so appearances count. T&N is all white tablecloths, heavy silver teapots, rose-patterned teacups and gauzy curtains. The grounds of the cottage are stunning, and we had a highly entertaining photo-shoot on the rustic, two-seater swing.
This was a lovely experience from end to end, and I can’t wait to go back. Thank you to all the Tea and Niceties staff for a glorious afternoon tea.
32 Eagle Heights Road, Eagle Heights
0428 088 711 or (07) 5545 3645
Tearoom: Open 11am-3pm Thursday to Sunday (2 hour sittings)
– Bookings essential
Emma Lee is a Brisbane native but lives to travel. She is also a big fan of food, good books and browsing at markets.
Since graduating from Griffith University with a Communications Degree, Emma has put her writing skills to good use in jobs ranging from Media Rep for a rugby team to Marketing Manager for a Japanese ski resort.
Emma dreams of publishing a novel one day and wants to live in a luxury camper van that never stays in one place for longer than a week.