I always get asked where to recommend for afternoon tea and the most typical answer you’d expect would be something like The Peninsular for their traditional style of food and setting. Although The Peninsular is a great option, sometimes you just want to explore out of the norm and into something a little more innovative and diverse.
I recently tried the Cantonese style afternoon tea served up at Hotel Icon’s Cantonese cuisine restaurant, Above & Beyond. It’s located on the 28th floor of the East Tsim Sha Tsui hotel, a great setting with the iconic and tourist-perfect view of Victoria Harbour looking out on to Hong Kong Island. So this definitely ticks the first box of the afternoon tea checklist – Stunning views!
I managed to book a table for 3 on the same day for a Sunday afternoon but if you want to grab that window side table best to book earlier than I did. Above & Beyond’s afternoon tea service starts at 3.15pm and finishes at 5.30pm giving you plenty of time to admire the view and take all the photos you want.
There is a great choice of tea available that comes as part of the afternoon tea set, I love herbal and Chinese teas so this already got me excited, I went for the ‘Sweet Enchantment’ tea which was a mix of osmanthus (my favourite!), rose buds and oolong as the base tea. There is also the usual coffee, latte, cappuccino, mocha and iced tea available.
The tea set was beautifully presented on a simple Chinese style wooden display with two layers. The bottom layer was filled with the savoury selection and the top was for sweet. Served up separately was the steamed dumplings presented in two mini steamers, very cute!
Sometimes presentation trades off for quality, but Above & Beyond managed to create an afternoon tea experience that tastes and looks impressive. Each piece of miniature food I tried was delicious and if you were the table next to me, you would have probably heard me making “Mmmm” noises to the point where it was annoying!
The savoury selection had a variety of baked, fried, steamed and boiled components and the sweet selection was equally diverse, with cakes, biscuits, mousses, nougat and candied fruits.
My favourites were the Barbecued Honey Glazed Chicken Liver and Pork Belly as it was a tiny version of the steamed buns you often find in Beijing restaurants and the Raspberry in Love Fruit Tart (very Easter appropriate as it was in the shape of a halved hardboiled egg! – The one on the right) Just in case you didn’t know what a real boiled egg looks like the one on the left is the Smoked Egg with Oolong Tea Leaves.
Verdict: I love the setting of the restaurant with the beautiful views overlooking Hong Kong and the way Chinese food and flavours have been served in an afternoon tea style, making it a lot more interesting than the usual English high tea. Their set is priced at $438 for 2 people which is one of the more reasonable prices for a hotel quality afternoon tea.
Happy Easter Food Babies!
Address: Above & Beyond, Hotel Icon 28/F, 17 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon (Closest MTR: Hung Hom Exit D3 or Tsim Sha Tsui East Exit P2)
If driving to Hotel Icon, they offer free valet parking for 2 hours if you spend $600 or over – So three people easily surpasses this.
Telephone: 3400 1318