Tag Archives: Vancouver Afternoon Tea

CONTEST CLOSED Secret Garden Tea Company – High Tea For Two Giveaway

The Secret Garden Tea Company is Expanding and Celebrating with a Giveaway For High Tea For Two

For two decades, the Secret Garden Tea Company in Kerrisdale has been offering a tranquil haven for Vancouverites to enjoy a spot of tea and delicious fresh-baked treats with friends and family.

WINNER- Congrats to Jill K!

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The First High Tea Served

Co-owner Kathy Wyder’s grandma was the inspiration for the tea room after lamenting there wasn’t one in Kerrisdale. So Kathy and a friend opened the tea room’s doors in October 1995. Since then, staff have poured countless cups of steaming tea in elegant china and served elegant sweets and scones, along with breakfast and lunch to anyone who simply want a break from the hectic pace of life.

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Secret Garden Tea Company Owners Kathy Wyder and Erin Wyder

Growing demand for a quiet, old-fashioned afternoon tea spurred the decision to move from its current home on West Boulevard to a larger location at 2138 West 40th Avenue. They will be able to serve more traditional high tea to customers later this summer when it opens, but the traditions you have come to love will remain the same.

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The larger Secret Garden will allow for milestone events and large gatherings such as bridal showers, birthdays and other celebrations in their customers’ lives.

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In honour of the move we are doing a giveaway for 2 for an afternoon tea. Tea Includes.

  • Secret Garden Egg Pinwheels
  • House Caesar Roast Beef on Mini Croissants
  • Smoky Caramelized Bacon on Petit Kale Muffins
  • Scone with Raspberry Jam and Devonshire Cream
  • Tea Cake Slices
  • Tangy Mini Lemon Curd Tart
  • Summery Upside Down Nectarine Cake with Salted Caramel Whip
  • Chocolate “Peanut Butter Cup” Tart
  • Pot of premium tea

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Chinese New Year Tea Service The Urban Tea Merchant

3 more days only! Experience the Year of the Goat with an elegant Asian inspired three-tiered platter of tea infused delights.  Offered until February 28th.

This may just be our favourite one yet!

Urban Tea Merchant

Chinese New Year Tea Service $48 per person


TWG Tea* from our extensive tea list
Veuve Clicquot Champagne add $30 LaMarca Prosecco add $12

Urban Tea Merchant

SAVOURIES 1837 Black Tea Crusted Ahi Tuna, Wasabi Mayonnaise Jade of Africa Scented Pork Belly, Eau Noir Crisp, Fennel Slaw, Apple Lobster Torchon, Tokyo Singapore Scallop Mousse Seared Sakura! Sakura! Tea Duck Breast, Marinated Cherries Weekend in Singapore Tea Stained Quails Egg, Soba Noodles, Lap Chong Sausage, Beef Broth

Urban Tea Merchant

SWEETS 1837 Black Tea Cake, White Chocolate Fruit Tart, lemon curd Magic Moment Tea Chocolate Mousse Cake Tuxedo Strawberries

Xi Shi Chinese New Year Afternoon Tea

IMG_2233Chinese New Year may have come and gone, but until March 13, 2014 you can still enjoy afternoon tea at the Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver’s Xi Shi Lounge.

We love the modern lounge of Xi Shi and their Blue Willow China set; hanging out there on a rainy afternoon just feels right. The hotel has switched up the room a bit for the month to give it with some nods to Chinese culture and there’s even live classical piano on the weekends.


We started with the special Jasmine Blossoming Tea, which is $5 extra, although there are many delightful options from the regular tea menu. However, watching the magical manner in which the blossoming tea blooms is worth the splurge and you can enjoy many many cups from the same pot.


On the savoury tray of the afternoon tea platter the usual sandwiches had been replaced with BBQ Pork Brioche Buns  filled with tasty pork and a crunchy cabbage, a Curried Tofu Wrap and Crispy Duck Spring Rolls filled with duck, radish and carrot. The lovely Smoked Salmon Bagels were still present as well.


The scones are some of our favourites in the city and we’ve been known to pack some to go. This time these flaky, moist and buttery delights came in orange and regular this time around with the usual strawberry and marmalade preserves, and Devonshire cream.



Atop the tray was a Green Tea Opera Cake, a Coconut Rice Cake, which is more like a jelly and very delish, Egg Tarts and on the side Black Sesame Dumplings in Ginger Syrup.  We took some of these to go as the tray is filling even if you do sit and enjoy the experience over an hour or two, which is the only way to do it!


The tea available daily from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for $38 with the Signature Jasmine Blossoming Tea available for an extra $5 until March 13, 2014.

Afternoon Tea at The Fairmont Airport

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Afternoon tea at the airport could just be the perfect way to spend a layover, or perhaps just the right activity while waiting for that late flight.  Then again, the tea itself is worth a trip to the airport, and with parking included it’s easy peasy.

The Fairmont Vancouver Airport hotel is located conveniently right in the Vancouver Airport and serves formal tea daily from 2 until 4:30 pm so you don’t have just the weekend to enjoy the ceremony.

SocialShopper Deal on right now for $49 FOR TEA FOR TWO click here to buy! 

The tea is served at the Globe YVR restaurant with views to the mountains and runways. Watching the planes come and go can actually be quite soothing as long as you don’t focus on the fact that it has perhaps been months since your last holiday.

On our last trip out we chose the Earl Grey Bergamot Tea which comes in a French press pot and came out fairly quickly followed by the tea tray. The three layers include scones, sandwiches and a variety of sweets that vary each week. There is also a kids tea that included some tasty looking cupcakes that looked so good we wish we had access to.


The server suggested we eat the scones first as they were freshly baked, but being the rebels we are we went with our usual order and did the sandwiches first. There was a turkey croissant, some pumpernickel with salmon and a cheese and tomato and ham. We are very particular about tea sandwiches and while these were fresh some were perhaps made earlier in the day and therefore the bread wasn’t quite as soft as we prefer.


The scones were still warm when we got to them and were indeed very fresh and served with a Devonshire cream and jam that was divine.  Scones and Earl Grey tea are a match made in heaven and these were particularly good.


On the top of the tray were a few different sweets with the macha tea cheesecake and mango pudding being the highlights here.

The service started and ended attentively, but they got very busy at one point (it was the long weekend) and our tea could have used a refill sooner than it arrived. This was a minor blip and we’d definitely do this again, especially since there is a SocialShopper deal on right now for $49 for Afternoon Tea for 2 People, Including Tasty Pastries, Petit Sandwiches, Famous House-Made Scones and More, Plus 2 Hours of Parking at The Fairmont Vancouver Airport (Usually $102).

Next time you’ve got to wait for a plane, this is the way to do it.

****Deal provided by SocialShopper


Arabian Nights at Shangri-La – Tea Time

1001 Nights Image for Press ReleaseUntil January 5, 2014 afternoon tea with an Arabian twist is being served in the Xi-Shi Lounge at the Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver.  Skip lunch and feast instead on the sandwiches, scones and sweets offered at afternoon tea; it’s just so civilized.

The hotel lobby bar, where the tea is served, is especially appealing right now as it’s decked out with flowing fabrics from the middle east and there’s even a Merchants Market as you enter  offering hand-roasted nuts, dried fruits, spices, as well as hand-made jewelry and custom Persian rugs.  Take a break from your holiday shopping and imagine yourself far away from the rather cold climate we are experiencing of late.


The tea includes some of their regular offerings such as the decadent scones with Devonshire cream and preserves, Keens Cheddar & Tomato Chutney on Toasted Brioche, Coronation Chicken on Light Rye Loaf and Smoked Pacific Steelhead Bagel, with Herbed cream cheese. For this particular theme there is also a Homous Wrap, baklava and Turkish delight Available daily from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for CAD$38 per person.




The Urban Tea Merchant Sakura Westcoast Afternoon Tea Service

SakuraThe Cherry Blossoms are here and Vancouver is celebrating with its very own Cherry Blossom Festival from April 5-28.  Although not an official event of the festival, The Urban Tea Merchant has one of the most culinary tempting offerings in honour of the blossom, its Sakura Westcaost Afternoon Tea Service is an ideal way to spend part of an afternoon or early evening.  Until the end of April Chef Michael Batoux has created a unique menu featuring Japanese flavours with west coast ingredients such as smoked salmon, sable fish, veggie rice rolls and green tea-infused melon cubes.

The Urban Tea Merchant recently partnered with TWG Tea, a luxury tea brand offered exclusively at their tea shops. Along with traditional teas, TWG Tea infuses their tea with fruits, flowers and spices from around the world.  TWG Tea also offers tea pots candles and tea gift sets for everyday treats and gifts, so make sure you take time before or after tea to peruse the storefront.


The Sakura! Sakura! tea is now available at The Urban Tea Merchant to celebrate the cherry blossoms.  It’s described as “an ode to spring, a fragrant TWG blend evoking Kyoto’s most celebrated season. A scattering of cherry blossoms and green tea yields a most aromatic and elegant fragrance.”

Urban Tea Merchant

The Tea Party Tea is another favourite for afternoon tea as it works well well with the tea cakes and sandwiches; it’s a black tea inflected with notes of candied sweetness.  Another of my favourites is the Paris to Singapore, green tea enhanced with fragrant cherry blossoms and red fruits – perfect for the season.

Urban Tea Merchant - Sakura Westcoast Tea Service

I am pretty much addicted to afternoon tea these days. I love the ritual of sipping tea and munching on small bites.  It relaxes me without my usual alcoholic fix and seems to energize me and prepare me for the remainder of the day.  Positive energy and tea seem to go hand and hand and this is an addiction that even my doctor approves of.  Urban Tea Merchant is definitely one of my very favourite tea spots in the city, and their Sakura Westcoast Tea sampling is a nice change from the tea sandwiches that are served with the other tea services they offer, although I will still be back for these tasty bites another time.

The Sakura Westcoast Tea Service is 30 per person and you can sample it while sitting in the salon looking out at the blossoms.  It includes:

Tea Sommelier’s choice of chilled white tea
Sweets tea-infused macaron, chevron strawberry, chocolate truffle & fresh exotic fruit

Urban Tea Merchant - Sakura Westcoast Tea Service

Open-faced smoked salmon & wasabi aioli with in-house ponzu jelly

Urban Tea Merchant - Sakura Westcoast Tea Service

Miso-maple glazed sable fish wrapped in butter lettuce

Urban Tea Merchant - Sakura Westcoast Tea Service
Spring rice roll with honey & balsamic, shiitake mushroom and crisp vegetables
Japanese fish crackers, crisp soba noodles with tangy seaweed salad and sesame crumble
Edible spring flowers, green tea-infused melon cubes

I came starving and was more than full after the tea.  Plenty of sweet and savoury treats.  Only until the end of April so get there before the blossoms and the tea are gone.


VanDusen Serves Afternoon Tea


“There is no trouble so great or grave that cannot be much diminished by a nice cup of tea,” or so says Bernard-Paul Heroux, an early Twentieth Century philosopher. Many people the world over subscribe to his sentiment.

While Vancouver overflows with plenty of places to grab a good cup of java, the number places serving traditional afternoon tea can be counted on less than 10 fingers. Now there’s one more to add to the list – one in a very special location.

Starting April 2nd, Truffles Café at VanDusen Botanical Garden will be serving a ‘proper’ Afternoon Tea complete with three-tier tray of goodies, ceramic tea pots and cups, organic and private label teas.

“It seemed a natural thing to do here,” says Truffles owner Nin Rai. “I can’t imagine a more beautiful setting in which to unwind over a cup of tea. The stress just melts away here.”   With its floor to ceiling windows over-looking Livingstone Lake and the Woodland Garden, Truffles always feels light and airy. Small tables and chairs scattered about the room as well as comfy lounge chairs and a couch add to the café’s casual ambiance.

Value priced at only $28 for two people (many tea rooms charge double that), or $50 for four, Truffles Afternoon Tea includes a three-tiered tray loaded with sweet and savoury goodies plus an extensive selection of teas. The first tray tier contains a choice of daily sandwich which has been cut into smaller portions.  Depending on availability, there could be a choice of Honey Mustard and Chicken or Roasted Veggies and Goat Cheese or Turkey, Brie and Cranberry to name just three. Also on the first tier are freshly made scones (you have your choice of sweet or savoury).

The middle tier contains a large croissant (divided into two portions), coconut macaroons and shortbread cookies while the top tier features jewel-toned French macarons and petit-fours.Selections change on a daily basis and depend on what has been baked that day. The Tea Tray also is accompanied by ramekins of house-made strawberry jam and VanDusen’s own un-pasteurized, organic honey.

Tea selections include VanDusen’s own private label black tea (blended for the Garden by The Secret Garden Tea Company in honour of the visit of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall in 2010) and a dozen different organic teas produced by MoTeas from Kelowna. Some of the tempting flavours include: Early Grey with Rose, Chocolate Mint Roiboos, Assam Breakfast, Masala Chai and classic Darjeeling.

“I got nasty habits, I take tea at three,”  snarled Mick Jagger in the 1969 Rolling Stones hit Live with Me. Unlike Sir Mick, we think that any time is a good time to unwind with a steaming cuppa accompanied by tasty nibbles at Truffles Café. Truffles Afternoon Tea will be available every day from 11 a.m. ‘til closing.

Truffles Café is open daily from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and later in the summer) in the new Visitor Centre at VanDusen Botanical Garden – 5151 Oak Street between W.33rd Avenue and W.37th Avenue.

Check out VanDusen’s facebook page  for daily updates on the Garden. For further information on Truffles visit its web site: www.trufflesfinefoods.com/café

The Urban Tea Merchant Sweetheart Trio for Two

In honour of the month of February and the season of love, Urban Tea Merchant is offering Valentine’s Sweet Tea Services, an ideal way to spend part of an afternoon or early evening.  Until the end of February Chef Michael Batoux has created tea infused cakes, fondues and sandwiches for sharing with loved ones; whether they be lovers, or merely friends you adore.

The Urban Tea Merchant recently partnered with TWG Tea, a luxury tea brand offered exclusively at their tea shops. Along with traditional teas, TWG Tea infuses their tea with fruits, flowers and spices from around the world.  TWG Tea also offers tea pots candles and tea gift sets for everyday treats and gifts, so make sure you take time before or after tea to peruse the storefront.  Of course the Valentine’s Sweet Tea services are served with a choice of these teas.

Sweetheart Tea Urban Tea Merchant

I sampled the Sweetheart Trio For Two this week, which is the ultimate plate of fruit, cake and chocolate served with some of the Urban Tea Merchant’s fragrant teas. The fruit is fresh, the chocolate decadent, and the company, well, that’s up to you.

Sweetheart Tea Urban Tea Merchant

Choose from the Love Me Tea, a green tea delicately enhanced by an armful of fragrant lime blossoms and verbena, the Valentine Breakfast Tea, a sweet  black tea of romance with fresh, ripe fruits, or the Magic Moment Tea is a black tea with citrus and nutty tropical coconut.

The dessert itself consists of two chocolate fondue pots filled with delightful chocolate infused with Bain de Roses and Timeless Tea, and an array of matcha cakes and fresh fruit for dipping.  Chef has also crafted Matcha madeleines that are then dipped in chocolate and a petite chocolate cake made with the Love Me Tea.  The service is flawless and the tea sommelier is usually handy should y0u have any tea related questions.

Sweetheart Tea Urban Tea Merchant

There is also the The Sweetheart Signature Afternoon Tea Service at $48 per person with a choice of premium TWG Tea.  Top tier pictured above and all three below.  I didn’t sample this particular combo, but I can assure you from previous tastings that you won’t be disappointed.


Sommelier’s choice of chilled white tea
sweets tea-infused macaron
chevron strawberry
tea-infused chocolate hearts
petit fours
fresh exotic fruit
Matcha madeleine
fresh baked scone served with devon crème & jam
savouries cucumber, watercress & cracked black pepper sandwich
open faced smoked salmon, wasabi mayo & soy jelly
Tiger Hill tea-infused egg salad sandwich
petit tea-infused chicken salad cone & petit savoury tart
baby shrimp & granny smith apple
boursin cheese mousse with crisp endive & candied walnut
wagu beef carpaccio with horseradish foam
Urban Tea Merchant Sweetheart Tea

Image courtesy of Melody Fury (Gourmet Fury)

With every Signature Afternoon Tea Service, you will receive a gift with purchase of 50grams of Earl Grey Chocolate Tea.


Urban Tea Merchant Holiday Tea Special – $19

The Urban Tea Merchant’s Holiday Afternoon Tea Special features tastes of sugar and spice and everything nice! (Until Dec. 31)

 Along with an assortment of our delicious signature tea sandwiches, we have added a traditional roast turkey breast tea sandwich.  The Urban Tea Merchant’s seasonal scone is a cranberry spice with ‘Noel Rouge’ tea-infused devonshire cream. 

The Holiday Afternoon Tea Special is topped off with ‘Noel Vert‘ tea-infused shortbread cookies, dipped in white chocolate, petits fours, a parisian macaron and a chevron strawberry.

To complete the celebration of this simple pleasure, we include a pot of THEODOR Noel tea – your choice of black, green, rooibos or white – a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, citrus fruits and bitter orange. This gastronomic tea & food pairing is indeed a pleasure!

Come and join us, share the joys of conversation with friends and family at The Urban Tea Merchant’s Salon de Thé as we all celebrate this season with some simple luxuries. 

Joyeux Noel