Honolulu | Afternoon Tea at Moana Surfrider

Saturday, April 27, 2013 4comments No tags Permalink 0

Today we are having afternoon tea with Kristen…

…at the Moana Surfrider.

Tea is served in the Veranda at the Beachhouse, right off Waikiki beach.

My last visit Surfrider visit was also with Kristen. She is my favorite person to have afternoon tea with…we’ve been doing this together for over a decade ^_^

The tea service (and restaurant interior) has changed a lot in the last few years. But they still serve tea from Tea Chest, a local Honolulu tea company. Tea Chest created three speciality blends for the hotel, pictured along the top row. And on the bottom row you have phoenix pearls, darjeeling, and lemon rooibos.

More on the specialty blends:

Moana Royale – black tea with lilikoi and papaya

Moana Sunset – black tea with mango and ‘ohelo berry

Veranda Breeze – black tea with caramel and vanilla

Three afternoon tea options:

First Lady Tea Service – the Veranda service plus berries with crème fraîche and a glass of sparkling rosè.

Moana Classic Tea Service – the Veranda service plus extra tea sandwiches, chocolate pot de crème, and lemongrass-green tea sorbet.

Veranda Tea Service – the basic tea service (sandwiches, scones, and sweets).

We went with the Moana Classic Tea Service.

Let’s start with sandwiches:

 – crab and cucumber on wheat

 – turkey and boursin on rye

 – smoked salmon and cream cheese

 – curried chicken salad on croissant (the only carryover from the old tea service)

Warm raisin scones with devonshire cream and housemade lemon curd.

And sweets! Mini lemon and pistachio macarons, lilikoi layer cake, guava-topped cheesecake with a graham cracker and chocolate crust…

I especially loved the crunchy black and white sesame caramel cookie…

…and this mochi-chocolate cupcake. Slice in half to reveal…

…mochi on the inside.

A round of chocolate pot de crème, another pot of tea, and then…

…lemongrass-green tea sorbet! The lemongrass flavor is prominent, so pure and refreshing.

Till next time ^_^

Suites at The May Fair London

Friday, April 26, 2013 0 No tags Permalink 0

Happy Friday ^_^

My latest for Gotham Magazine…a look at the decadent suites of The May Fair London. 45 suites in total, each completely different from the other. I love older classics like The Ritz London and Brown’s Hotel, but this is a mighty fun departure.

Can’t wait to return.

Montréal | Maison Boulud

Wednesday, April 24, 2013 0 No tags Permalink 0

Quick! Before maple season is over…

…get yourself to Montréal. 

And straight to the doors of Maison Boulud where maple comes in multiple forms. This is Maple Crémeux. Think maple cotton candy, spun to order. Maple crème fraîche, white chocolate-maple ganache, and even maple ice cream. 

While you’re there, dive into other desserts, like this Limoncello and Hazelnut creation and that wonderful Roasted Pineapple and Lilikoi pictured at top. It’s served with a giant calisson! 

I met with Pastry Chef David Jubin to chat about his newest desserts. See my post for Serious Eats. All his sweets are wonderful and bright, often edging on whimsical. 

Of course, there is always room for Chocolate Coulant. But instead of oozing liquid chocolate, this one surprises with silky salted butter caramel. Oh my!

Comes with caramelized milk ice cream too ;)

Maison Boulud Montréal

1228 Sherbrooke Street W, Montreal, QC H3G 1H6, Canada

+1 514-842-4212

Tea Tasting with Tea Wing

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 1 No tags Permalink 0

I recently did a tea tasting with Zach of Tea Wing.

(Can you spot the cat? ;)

Mare Gyokuro Hojicha

Zach sources all his teas (which are excellent!) straight from Japan…

Mare Gyokuro Hojicha

…in fact, he is there right now.

Kasumi Fukamushi Sencha

Follow along on his 2013 spring buying trip here

Kasumi Fukamushi Sencha

…each post is a wonder of information.

Soba Cha

Like this post on Shincha (新茶)…

Kabuse (shaded) Kukicha

…and a look at Tenju, the 2012 prize winning matcha from Uji.

Kabuse (shaded) Kukicha

He updates daily so stay tuned for posts involving a restaurant with an iced gyokuro tasting menu, tea auctions in Kyushu, and even tea harvesting in Yame.

Shuppin Gyokuro, Competition Winner

In the meantime…

Shuppin Gyokuro, Competition Winner

…I’ll be reliving the first sip of this heady and rich Shuppin Gyokuro.

P.S. His Kiwami Matcha is magical…look at the color!

We had it both thin…

…and thick. Ahhh ^_^

London | A Boutique Afternoon Tea with Lalani & Co.

Monday, April 22, 2013 1 No tags Permalink 0

For those of you in London…

…take note! Lalani & Co. and The Modern Pantry are co-hosting A Boutique Afternoon Tea. I briefly mentioned Lalani & Co. <a href="http://static.squarespace.com/static/51895797e4b07dc9727307ce/518957d3e4b04dec96da1667/518957dce4b04dec96da1760/1388622944867/#img the Big Island Tea Farm in Hawai’i (available at Harrods for $4,800 a pound).

Here’s the afternoon tea menu. Six courses, each paired with a tea* from Lalani’s & Co.’s collection. I am most curious about the sencha mayonnaise!

ONE

  • Umeboshi custard tart, cauliflower, fennel & almond ‘pastry’
  • Mannong Village Ancient White Buds 2010,Yunnan

TWO

  • Perroche, Ragstone & roast tomato sandwiches, sencha mayonnaise
  • Okumidori Cultivar 1st Flush Sencha 2012, Nakai-San, Kyoto

THREE

  • Grilled Persian spiced poussin leg
  • Makaibari 2nd Flush Grand Reserve 2012, Darjeeling

FOUR

  • Grape & verjus compote, cinder toffee & caraway crumble
  • Makaibari 2nd Flush Grand Reserve 2012, Darjeeling

FIVE

  • White chocolate, Urfa chilli & black garlic caramel truffle
  • LaKyrsiew Spring Reserve 2011, Meghalaya

SIX

  • Petit Fours
  • Jade Butterfly Mar-Tea-Ni, organic matcha cocktail

The tea takes place 3pm on May 3rd. Call 020 7553 9210 to reserve.

*Tea + food pairings are so much fun. Remember the In Pursuit of Tea  dinner from 2011? And the one with Le Palais des Thés?

[photos via The Modern Pantry]