Sunday, 16 September 2012

Tea for Three

Teatime Indulgence at Palm Court. Photo by Marc Checkley
The Langham Food & Wine Festival is one, the first time the hotel group has organized such an event on a very large scale.

A number of well known chefs have been flown into Hong Kong to cook for the city's foodies, including Albert Roux, whose restaurant in London was the first to be awarded three Michelin stars, Kiwi Benjamin Bayly, executive chef of Grove Restaurant, Sursur Lee, originally from Hong Kong, now based in Toronto but also has restaurants in Singapore and Washington, and Igor Macchia, whose Ristorante La Credenza has two Michelin stars.

Parisian pastry chef Gontran Cherrier
Another is Parisian pastry chef Gontran Cherrier and some friends from out of town and I sampled his afternoon tea. He owns Gontran Cherrier Artesian Boulanger in the City of Lights and so we were eager to see what French creations he would whip up.

We had "Teatime Indulgence" at the Palm Court in the lobby area of Langham Hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui and we were pleasantly surprised by the elegant but also relaxed atmosphere of the place. We sat on a plush couch that was very comfortable and were entertained by live music.

The place wasn't too busy and so we took our time choosing which tea we wanted to drink.

And then the afternoon tea (HK$298 each) arrived, all three portions presented on a three-tier curate. We loved the beautifully decorated places, painted with delicate flowers.

At the bottom were a selection of savouries, a scotch quail egg on bread, cucumber and ham rolled sandwiches, and scallop sandwiches too topped with caviar. We particularly liked the smoked salmon wrapped like a ball that was full of flavour and also the beetroot shell holding foie gras terrine. Ooh la la!

Several pastry selections... we liked the flaky round ones
We were then given some small scones plain and with raisin that had come fresh from the oven. They were a nice small size and came with clotted cream, butter and thick jam.

The next plate had some delicious sweets, including a flaky round pastry, another like a rectangular piece of cake, though it didn't do much for me, and then a chocolate muffin that had a cool rather than hot fondant inside.

Desserts on the top plate were intriguing. There was a pastry decorated with raspberries and cucumber?! But it was very refreshing, as well as the tart finish of the cookies topped with a lemon dollop. Oh and there was another flaky pastry with a bit of cinnamon flavour too.

All in all we had a great time catching up and enjoying our afternoon tea too.

Delicious savouries particularly the foie gras in beetroot shell
Would have been even better if chef Gontran made an appearance, but oh well.

Perhaps he'll come back to Hong Kong again soon?

Palm Court
Langham Hotel
8 Peking Road
Tsim Sha Tsui
2132 7878

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