INTOXICATING SUMMER SWEETNESS
Flowers, as the syaing goes, are luscious and sweet. If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden. The blissful aromatic taste still lingers in my mouth after visiting the Summer Meadow Afternoon Tea at The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong.
Enjoy a signature afternoon tea at The Lounge & Bar on the 102nd floor of The Ritz-Carlton while overlooking the spectacular skyline of Victoria Harbour.
Incorporating the flavours of flowers and seasonal summer ingredients, the afternoon tea also features two limited edition delicacies and choices of creative cocktails made with St Germain Elderflower Liqueur – the world’s first artisanal French liqueur, bringing a fragrant haven.
The St Germain Elderflower Liqueur reminded me of Paris instantly. Exploiting hand-picked elderflowers only, each bottle is made with as many as 1,000 of the very best elderflower blossoms, resulting in a finely crafted and perfectly balanced amber liqueur. Its complex, fruity and honeylike flavours transport you to the sunset afterglow evening sky in Southern France.
As soon as I sat down, the waiter offered me a glass of Summer Meadow cocktail to beat the sizzling heat of summer. With a romantic purple hue coming from the butterfly pea-infused white vermouth, this tropical eye-candy is made with a base of St Germain Elderflower Liqueur and Ungava gin, and garnished with dried pineapple and lychee. The captivating flavours of St Germain liqueur lured me to keep sipping on it.
I was pleased to see the afternoon tea arriving on a traditional three-tiered tray. Foie Gras Sandwich with Mushroom, Raspberry and St Germain Duxelles is one of the savoury items created with St Germain Elderflower Liqueur. The subtle sweetness of raspberry jam matches perfectly with the creaminess of foie gras and earthy notes of mushroom duxelle. Paying tribute to the liqueur’s heritage, brioche sandwich is used to give a French touch to this savoury bite, while the aromatic St Germain jelly on top embellishes this flavourful treat.
01 (From left to right) Honey and Lavender Delight, Avocado and Crab Sesame Cone with Lavender and Pistachio. 02 (From left to right) Coconut Passion Fruit and St Germain Verrine, Foie Gras Sandwich with Mushroom, Raspberry and St Germain Duxelles. 03 Decorated with shiso leaf and strawberry slices, the Berries Elixir cocktail features St Germain Elderflower Liqueur, sake, lemon juice and strawberry puree; topped with champagne to give it a tingly finish. 04 With a romantic purple hue coming from the butterfly pea-infused white vermouth, the Summer Meadow cocktail is made with a base of St Germain Elderflower Liqueur and Ungava gin, and garnished with dried pineapple and lychee.
Avocado and Crab Sesame Cone with Lavender and Pistachio is disguised as a cool ice-cream cone. Sprinkling with lavender and pistachio dust, I tasted ice cream-like avocado mousse atop crab salad inside, readying my appetite for the feast to come.
After the savoury items, let us cleanse the palate with Chrysanthemum and Pomegranate Jelly Sphere before moving on to the sweet confections. Another dessert creation with St Germain Elderflower Liqueur is Coconut Passion Fruit and St Germain Verrine, which is my personal favourite. Topped with crystal clear jelly made of St Germain liqueur, the jelly sparkles like diamonds under the sun. With layers of refreshing passion fruit mousse, almond moist cake and heavenly smooth coconut panna cotta, it houses a symphony of textures and summer fruit flavours in one cup. To savour different levels of sweetness, it is recommended to taste all elements on one spoon.
Honey and Lavender Delight is reminiscent of French romance and fantasy. The honey jelly in the center and the floral notes of lavender mousse share a light and delicate taste, where the bottom crunchy layer adds crispy textures. The enduring floral notes of lavender take me back to the lavender fields in Provence France.
Lemon and Lime Cake may seem unremarkable at first, yet it evokes my appetite the most. Covered with a thin slice of white chocolate, the fluffy cake is filled with soft and creamy lime custard inside, giving a bright and refreshing taste like bathing in golden sunshine. Strawberry Yoghurt Cake is also sweet and delightful, stimulating my appetite. As for Coconut and Mango Choux, the whipped coconut cream complements the nectarous mango perfectly, making me reluctant to finish the last bite.
Finally, let us round out this summer dream with a glass of Berries Elixir cocktail. Decorated with shiso leaf and strawberry slices, it features St Germain Elderflower Liqueur, sake, lemon juice and strawberry puree; topped with champagne to give it a tingly finish. This summer afternoon tea with a tipsy twist is going to win every dessert lover’s heart.
Guests who enjoy Summer Meadow Afternoon Tea can purchase the St Germain Gift Box at a special price at HK$300/set (original price: HK$468/set).
Summer Meadow Afternoon Tea
The Lounge & Bar, Level 102, The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong
+852 2263 2270