Food Friday Logo

Today we have another restaurant that serves Afternoon Tea!

Here’s a recap on previous Food Friday Posts on Afternoon Tea in Toronto:
MoRoCo Chocolat
Shangri-La Hotel

This place is the first Afternoon Tea restaurant that my Mom and I went to in Toronto and was one of our favourites.

We went in 2012 as part of a Groupon deal.  We enjoyed our experience so much that when another Groupon deal came up, we just had to snatch it and went again a few weeks ago.  Today’s restaurant is none other than Windsor Arms.

[custom_box width=”60%” bgcolor=”#D5F2B6″ border_color=”#3F9F29″ text_color=”#3F9F29″ icon_url=”http://www.fionaman.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/knife-fork.jpg”]RESTAURANT: Windsor Arms
ADDRESS: 18 St. Thomas Street Toronto, ON M5S 1L7
CUISINE: Afternoon Tea
PHONE: (416) 971-9666
WEBSITE: http://www.windsorarmshotel.com/tearoom[/custom_box]

IMG_0183

The price is normally $35 per person on weekdays, but the Groupon was for $50 for 2 people.

From going there in 2012 then 2013, the menu hasn’t really changed.  The scones and sandwiches remain the same but the petite fours are a bit different.

When you enter, you get a selection of 30 loose-leaf teas to choose from.  Every one of the teas is absolutely spectacular.  So you can’t go wrong with the selection.

Then you are presented with a three tier tray of scones, sandwiches, and petite fours.

It was recommended by our waiter to eat the tart first as it came fresh out of the oven. The goat cheese wasn’t overly pungent in the tart and the shallots were well caramelized making it a great start to our meal.

Goat Cheese and Caramelized Shallot Tart

Goat Cheese and Caramelized Shallot Tart

The scones are pretty big and compared to the ones that Shangri-La, they are a lot heavier, contain more flour, and as a result, it fills you up more.  The preserves and devon cream complimented the scones well.  It wasn’t overly sweet and  you could taste the freshness.

Fresh Scones with Preserves and Devon Cream

Fresh Scones with Preserves and Devon Cream

The sandwiches are a work of art and have really complex flavours.  The first time we went there, we really enjoyed it.  But the second time around and having other restaurants to compare to, we weren’t to keen on them.  By making the bread soft enough to roll it out, it felt like a mushy mess in your mouth.  There wasn’t too much texture to contrast from the filling inside making it  very one note.

Smoked Salmon and Wasabi Sour Cream with Salmon Caviar Cucumber with Sundried Tomato Paste and Dill Cream Cheese Grilled Chicken, Granny Smith Apples Citrus Mayonnaise, Greek Yogurt & Chives

Smoked Salmon and Wasabi Sour Cream with Salmon Caviar
Cucumber with Sundried Tomato Paste and Dill Cream Cheese
Grilled Chicken, Granny Smith Apples Citrus Mayonnaise, Greek Yogurt & Chives

Funny enough, we actually sat in the same seats both times we went.  Since the petite fours were place at the top tier, you will see my Mom’s head in the background.  The petite fours are delicious but a tad too sweet for my liking.  It wasn’t enough to really ruin my experience, but if you don’t have too much of a sweet tooth, it’s something to note.

My only gripe with their format for 2 people is that there is only one of each kind of petite four.  There should be two so each person can experience it.  To compensate for this, my Mom and I actually split each petite four in half, which is a bit messy.

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2012)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

Petits Fours (2013)

To cleanse your palette at the end of the meal, they serve you a refreshing fruit dish. In 2012, it was Fresh Strawberries with Whipped Cream and in 2013, it was Raspberry Sorbet. We had the option of adding Champagne on top but opted out.  Both dishes were delicious and you could taste the freshness in the fruit.

Fresh Strawberries with Whipped Cream

Fresh Strawberries with Whipped Cream

Raspberry Sorbet

Raspberry Sorbet

 

After going again, is this restaurant still my favourite place to eat Afternoon Tea?
Unfortunately, it’s not.  As much as we enjoyed the food, the one thing that ruined the entire experience for us was service.

The first time we went, the servers were amazing and attentive.  They poured our tea, explained the different notes, and came over frequently to see how we were doing and asking for a refill of hot water.  The second time around, none of this occurred.  The waiter just put the tea pot down and said it had to steep a bit more and never returned to pour our tea.  When the three tier tower came, they explained it and left.  They didn’t come to see how we were doing.  I gave a particular waiter next to us a look in hopes that he would come over to ask us if we needed anything else.  He looked at me and just looked away.  I had to flag down another waiter just to get our bill.  It’s unfortunate that all of this occurred during our second experience at Windsor Arms.

So it’s safe to say that the delicious food, superb service, and warm atmosphere has made Shangri-La our favourite Afternoon Tea hot spot in Toronto!

Windsor Arms Tea Room on Urbanspoon