Looking for the best high tea in Singapore? There’s nothing quite as enjoyable as sipping on tea and chit-chatting over dainty treats with your best friend. The EL team (lucky us!) had the chance to try some of the best afternoon teas across the island. Read on for our reviews!
LeBar, Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort & Spa
Tea time: Daily, 1pm to 3pm, and 3pm to 5pm, until 31 December
Price: From $45 per person including free-flow Nespresso Coffee or TWG Tea. Sparkling Tea: $28 for two glasses, $60 per bottle. Champagne: $36 for two glasses, $88 per bottle.
Spill the tea: We really enjoyed the Tropical High Tea at LeBar. It’s held in a pavilion in the open central area of the Sofitel resort on Sentosa. There have also been some stylish renovations since I was last there – it was looking good! You could almost be on a Balinese escape. Keep an eye out for the resident peacocks as they grace the outdoor spaces at the Sofitel Fountain.
The selection of patisseries and savouries was a nice mix of savoury and sweet, with delicious cucumber sandwiches, of course! We loved the tropical touches, including a hint of pomegranate, pineapple and pandan in the mix. And the very good scones came with strawberry jam, cream and kaya – to link in with the Singapore theme.
Enjoy free-flow Nespresso or TWG Tea with the Tropical High Tea. You can also top it up with cool glasses of champagne like we did. It was delicious!
– Rebecca Bisset
WOOBAR, W Singapore – Sentosa Cove
Tea time: Daily, 3pm to 5pm
Price: $88 for two on weekdays: $98 for two on weekends and public holidays. Alcoholic and nonalcoholic Copenhagen Sparkling Tea are available at $70 and $45 per bottle.
Spill the tea: The hotel is stunning and cool, and “T Time” is served in WOOBAR, one of my favourite weekend hangouts that’s starting to come to life again.
We were excited when our cute decorative silver birdcage arrived – this one will be a treat for Instagrammers. There were so many pretty things in the cage, we really didn’t know what to grab first. The menu really was my kind of food: quail egg quiche, Boston lobster roll, smoked Atlantic salmon in a soft dark rye bread and a goat’s cheese savoury cheesecake with onion marmalade – gorgeous!
I love my savouries so I’m always loitering around that tier but this sweet selection drew me in. The cute triple-chocolate M&M mini milkshake was so divine. We quickly jumped into the other desserts like the rainbow thousandlayer cake, fluffy red velvet cake pops, pistachio nutty nougat and lavender macarons and lychee blackcurrant marshmallow. We saved a little space for the lemon cranberry scones with clotted cream and seasonal jam along with fennel madeleines with honey lavender butter, the perfect end to a wonderful afternoon.
A selection of lovely tea blends from TWG are included as well as hot or iced coffee – oh, and you can add some lovely special-offer cocktails or sparkling tea too.
– Jacqui Young
Brasserie Les Saveurs, The St. Regis Singapore
Tea time: Mondays to Saturdays 3pm to 5pm; Sunday 3.30pm to 5.30pm
Price: Weekdays, from $48 per person; weekends, from $55 per person; top up $25 for a glass of Barons de Rothschild Brut NV Champagne.
Spill the tea: Any meal at the French-inspired Brasserie Les Saveurs is a treat, and afternoon tea is doubly so! Afternoon tea begins with your choice of TWG teas, including a range of white, oolong and green teas alongside stalwarts like Earl Grey and English Breakfast – I picked the latter because I’m a creature of habit and I like a strong brew.
Next, we were presented with a two-tiered tray with savouries on top and a selection of colourful desserts below. There were four savouries on the tray: a foie gras and fig tartlet, prawn and mentaiko mayo brioche, beef pastrami and blue cheese cream sandwich, and a tomato and mozzarella pesto wrap. My favourite here was the tartlet – the rich, creamy foie gras paired perfectly with the tart sweetness of the fig jam. An additional savoury dish, a smoked salmon and asparagus quiche, arrived on its own and was rich and comforting.
For the sweets, there was an array of treats including chocolate pralines, a red fruit tartlet and a strawberry sphere – my favourite was the macaron that was delicately scented with rose. The highlight of the sweets was the scone basket! We piled clotted cream and jam onto the rich, dense and buttery scones for a perfect end to our tea.
– Dinesh Ajith
1864 – The Bar, Sofitel Singapore City Centre
Tea time: Daily, 2pm to 5pm, until 12 June
Price: This afternoon tea is priced from $128 for two people; top-up $78 for each additional person. If you’re a wine lover, you can add on $50 for two glasses of Minuty M Rosé Wine and Chandon Garden Spritz (which I highly recommend!).
Spill the tea: You don’t have to fly to France to indulge in an afternoon tea with your friends or loved ones because 1864 offers French patisseries both sweet and savoury. Located conveniently above Tanjong Pagar MRT, the lounge is perfect for business meetings with its classy atmosphere. Family and friends will also have a delightful afternoon here (with teddy bears on sofas keeping them company!).
The lounge is now delivering a special Rosé High Tea Experience that serves a generous spread of delicacies infused with rosé wine, complemented by an excellent range of barista-style coffee or 18 blends of TWG Teas. I particularly loved the Fraiser Pot that creatively resembles a beautiful garden pot, and the Cruffin (croissant muffin hybrid), which is served with Je T’aime Ice Cream and a fun rosé wine spray.
– Jeanne Wong
Atrium, Pan Pacific Singapore
Tea time: Monday to Sunday, 12pm-6pm
Price: $52 per diner with a pot of TWG tea or Bacha coffee, $62 with a glass of Copenhagen Sparkling Tea or $72 with champagne or a raspberry sakura cocktail.
Spill the tea: The lantern-shaped floating pods of Pan Pacific’s Atrium is a perfect place for a tête-à-tête, catching up with girlfriends for a couple of hours. The pods are not only spacious but they have a private and sophisticated atmosphere over the reflection pool.
The Japanese-inspired afternoon tea offers a wide selection of Bacha coffee and TWG tea. For a $20 top-up you can go for a glass of champagne or try their raspberry sakura cocktail. I picked the Yirgacheffe Heirloom Coffee with a touch of lemongrass, which balanced the sweets off well. My friend was sipping the more conventional Earl Grey.
We both agreed that amongst the freshly made savouries, the salmon quiche with ikura, sour cream and dill and the smoked trout, nori and wasabi mayonnaise sandwich were definitely the highlights.
The sweet selection was brought in on a three-tier tea stand shaped like the floating pods – lovely attention to detail! The plain and blueberry scones were light and tasty, and served with chestnut spread, clotted cream and strawberry preserve. There was a mix of traditional and Japanese high-tea items – hard to pick a favourite between the Earl Grey macaron and the mochi. My friend Devi favoured the marble cheesecake and the raspberry lychee rose roulade.
We would have gone for a cocktail or two in their 44-metre long bar had we not been pleasantly filled up – saving that for the next time!
– Judit Gál
Window on the Park, Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre
Tea time: Daily, 12pm to 5pm
Price: From $80 for two adults (Pay-1-Dine-2 Offer), $45 for an additional paying adult and $30 for children.
Spill the tea: If you would like to enjoy a quiet afternoon tea in town away from the crowds, Window on the Park is an ideal spot. Despite its central location, the restaurant is tucked away in a long-standing hotel so there are the dual perks of accessibility and tranquillity.
Afternoon tea pastries are mostly sweet, so what surprised me was the equal amount of savouries served here. Highlights like the Scottish smoked salmon with dill mayonnaise and potato croquette with forest mushroom sauce can be enjoyed alongside carrot cakes and raspberry macarons. You could say that the spread caters to those with a more balanced palate. The drink options are kept simple and classic, with choices like English breakfast tea and coffee. There’s also a good mix of international and local flavours. Try creative fusion dishes like the Golden Bak Kwa and cheese croissants.
– Yimin Huang
The Lobby Lounge, Shangri-La Singapore
Tea time: Daily, 3pm to 5pm
Price: From $88 per set (serves two)
Spill the tea: I’ve always loved the setting of the Shangri-La Singapore – it’s a classic, and a great spot for afternoon tea. The Lobby Lounge was as beautiful as ever on our visit, and it was nice to see the hotel buzzing.
The stunning three-tier tea set was a little different to how I remembered it. This time it came with some local delicacies – a lovely change up! We started at the lower tier and worked our way up. Savoury options included a mix of Nyonya sambal sweet prawn profiteroles, smoked salmon achar and sweet pickle roll, hae bee hiam chicken and apricot sandwich. There was also a Nyonya otah and eggplant mousseline tartlet.
Local favourites such as kueh lapis, ondeh ondeh, ayu puteri, kueh ko swee and kueh salat also made an appearance; I must admit, in all my years in Singapore, I just hadn’t had the opportunity to try these delicious items. I loved the unusual blend of tastes.
The top tier consisted of a rainbow macaron, red velvet roulade, gula melaka cake, and sea salt caramel financier – the latter was definitely my favourite. I had to save a little room for my favourite afternoon tea item: scones. Served with strawberry jam and clotted cream, these were something special.
The selection of classic and speciality teas, coffee, kopi tarik or teh tarik is a great pairing, and offers something for everyone. At $88 for two, it’s excellent value for a lovely afternoon outing in this beautiful hotel.
– Jacqui Young
Mrs Kueh’s English Afternoon Tea, The Dempsey Project
Tea time: Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 3.30pm to 5.30pm
Price: $38 per person (minimum of two people)
Spill the tea: The big open space with lively music and chatter is not what you would expect when going for a traditional tea-and-scones experience.
Once at your table, the dainty porcelain crockery, pot of Darjeeling tea and tiered tray appear. The brightly coloured kueh is clearly the hero. Mrs Kueh is a local business started three years ago by a mother-and-son team looking to maintain the heritage recipes of these little sweet treats, and also lighten them up for modern palates.
Naturally coloured, the purple of the ondeh ondeh is from Okinawan sweet potato; the steamed mini bundt cakes (putri ayu) have fresh kaya jam custard on top; and the kueh salat has green pandan custard atop blue pea coloured coconut rice. The textures are light and fluffy, with generous bursts of gula melaka inside the ondeh ondeh, and the custards are creamy. Definitely a cut above the little packets you can buy in stores.
Also served are some more traditional finger sandwiches, orange tea cake and lemon tarts as well as light and fluffy raisin scones with homemade strawberry preserve and cream.
It was a lovely way to enjoy a blend of Peranakan and British food heritage
– Danielle Rossetti Block
This article first appeared in the June 2022 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!
Looking for a tipple instead? Here are some of the hottest new bars in Singapore.
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