Since our visit to Harlan's for their afternoon tea crossover with Jo Malone, it's been about 2 years that I haven't had any themed afternoon tea until now. I was thrilled when I learnt about this special afternoon tea by Feast x Aesop only for November 2012 from the web and in no second I rang up the restaurant to book my table right away, you know, it could be booked up fast for the session on weekends!
(Updates: due to popular demand, this special afternoon tea has been extended till the end of December!!)
Feast (Food by EAST) is one of the restaurants in a very hip business hotel, EAST Hong Kong, which is renowned for its simplicity and yet a hip interior to provide a comfortable living space with style. The restaurant was also designed in line with this principle and creates a very comfy and relaxing atmosphere by the super-high ceiling made of stunning full height windows & glass roof. Isn't it the best place to unwind ourselves with a nice afternoon tea time on Sunday?
There was a wide selection of tea & coffee from the drink list and we just picked Earl Gray as it's always our favourite tea to go with afternoon tea, unless there are other choices of unique blend of tea available.
They only offer tea-bag, which was a little let-down for me as I always prefer loose tea that brewed in pot. Anyway, what's more I could ask for from a HK$165 tea set for two? The Earl Grey wasn't bad though, it's not too strong and nicely carrying a light hint of natural citrus flavour. Hot water in pot was served alongside that you can refill your cup of tea and warm milk was served too, but I like having it alone without adding milk & sugar. Another disappointment, the silver colour coated cup is fading due to wear & tear, can't they just replace it for the sake of their image??
Instead of the traditional 3-tiered stand, the food was served on a large flat rectangle plate like a palette. Some may think it looks less attractive than the tiered type but I love its simplicity and I can view all the food in a glance. There were 8 different kinds of finger snacks inspired by the natural ingredients used in the products of the Australian skincare brand Aesop, with 4 savoury items and 4 confectionery choices.
Smoked Salmon & Citrus Dressed Cream Cheese Profiterole was a new combination to me as I've never tried profiterole (a.k.a. puff) going with savoury stuffing. Smoked salmon was fresh without fishy smell and the citrus dressed cream cheese has pulled the taste and texture of profiterole & smoked salmon together and made all of them so compatible to each other.
Duck & Juniper Wrap was fantastic with the juicy pieces of duck meat and slightly grilled tortilla wrap. The mayonnaise sauce & shredded cucumber mixed together to bring a taste of fresh salad that balanced up the meaty flavour.
Grilled Chicken with Sage in Parsley Seed Bread Finger Sandwich had an ordinary look but tasted extraordinary. Parsley seeds in the bread together with the sage gave a slight peppery flavour which made up a surprising combination with the grilled chicken in cream sauce.
Rosemary infused Focaccia Bread with Parma Ham & Provolone came in a very lovely presentation with all the mini sized ingredients set and stacked neatly to create a lively form of sandwich. Provolone was of the mild type and I'm sure everyone wouldn't resist it even to those who don't get used to any cheesy taste. Rosemary taste in Focaccia bread was however not sharp enough to bring an impressive flavour.
Cranberry, Walnut & Praline Tartlet was delicious with the praline not being too sweet, and the fruity cranberry had added a hint of sourish taste that this nutty tartlet just needed. Well done!
Lavender & Honey Teacake was my most liked confectionery on the plate. It had a compact texture with right moisture and infused with just a very very light lavender flavour to bring out an aromatic touch in taste.
Lime & Basil Macaroon was perhaps the best macaroon I have ever had among my afternoon tea experience, and yes, it's even better than the one from The Peninsula! Texture wise, it's perfect with the crisp outer crust as well as a slight chewiness in the middle. The cream in between was of adequate amount to tightly bond the 2 shells together and it wasn't too sweet at all. Though I couldn't taste any basil, tinge of lime was tasted and it lingered a while as aftertaste.
Chocolate Rose Cream was made of semi-bitter chocolate with quite a sharp aroma of rose but nothing more. It's not bad but just sounds a bit ordinary to me.
A complimentary package of goodies from the crossover partner Aesop was given to each pair of guests. It included a travel sized bottle of body balm, a little box containing 3 sachets of skincare sample from their parsley seed range, and a postcard to redeem a complimentary skincare consultation & some more samples from the Aesop branch in Cityplaza (I got 4 more sachets of haircare products from there~). I love all natural skincare products and am keen on trying new product line from different brands. So I just can't wait to try them out!
Website : http://www.east-hongkong.com
Address : 29 Taikoo Shing Road, Island East
Access : Taikoo MTR Station, Exit D1