I’ve always wanted to attend High Tea @ the Fairmont, and thankfully, this weekend we finally had the chance.
Deciding to forgo the combination of ice and slushy snow outside, we waltzed into the Chateau Lake Louise and found a bright spot amid a wall of palladian windows.
Guests quietly chatted among themselves, while soft music wistfully played in the background. And as we took our seats, we peered out towards the breathtaking landscape, full of majestic snow-capped mountains guarding the frozen lake.
We were encouraged to select a tea from the lengthy list, and reassured that everything else was already selected for us.
Perusing through the list, there were green, black, white, herbal, and fruity teas. Each with a selection of 4 or 5. We read through their descriptions with ingredients such as Ontario Ice wine or peppermint, waiting for that special one to catch our eye.
I chose “Berry Berry” – an extremely rich and flavourful tea, with hints of strawberry, raspberry, and blueberry, while Cole selected the “champagne of black teas”.
In no time, our server was tossing hearty spoon-fulls of tea leaves into our pots. Each was aromatic and instantly calming.
We were quickly brought an amuse bouche titled the “Flight of Strawberries”. Living up to its name, plated was a piece of strawberry brie, a drop of strawberry balsamic vinaigrette, a shot of an apple-strawberry smoothie blend, and of course, a strawberry. It was exceptionally light and refreshing.
Next came the hot water, which boiled and bubbled as it made its way into our silver teapots. Steam began to rise, and in no time, our noses were filled with glorious scents.
When we couldn’t wait any longer, we poured the tea into our cups and took a sip.
As our tummies began to grumble, out came a colourful selection of miniature sandwiches.
Layered beneath each piece was a variety of fillings – ginger and carrot, deviled ham and spinach, egg salad, smoked salmon and cream cheese, and baby shrimp.
The smoked salmon was by far my favourite, nestled between a pumpernickel flavoured bread.
We sat back, warmed up with buckets of tea, admired the scenery, and waited for our final course. You couldn’t find a more peaceful place to be.
The desserts came out on a three-tiered tower.
The bottom layer was full of warm, buttery, buttermilk scones – sprinkled with icing sugar and accompanied with cups of clotted cream, lemon curd, and berry jam.
The middle layer had strawberry-jam filled cookies, and berry flavoured pieces of mille-feuille.
And on the top was a variety of chocolate-flavoured pastries, such as chocolate-mousse filled cups, baby cheesecakes, and matcha-filled cream puffs, all topped with fresh fruit.
Each were handcrafted, delicate, and most importantly, delicious. We of course, ate it all.
The menu is a little pricey ($41 per person), but it’s the perfect place to relax and just enjoy your afternoon. Besides, everything about the Chateau is the sort of one-time-thing that is worthy of a little splurge.
Plus, afterwards, you can stroll outside and admire the lake for yourself.