Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Afternoon Tea Service at The Urban Tea Merchant

A few weeks ago, fellow Vancouver blogger Whitney posted a recap of an afternoon she'd spent at The Urban Tea Merchant sampling some of their services. Her review made the entire idea of an afternoon tea service sound so g.d. delightful, that I immediately set to work planning a trip there myself with some other local bloggers (including Whitney!), which went down this weekend!

Urban Tea Merchant Vancouver


Part "tea salon," part cafe, and part tea retail boutique, UTM is located in downtown Vancouver at Georgia St. and Burrard St. You can go there just to grab a casual tea and some macarons, or to enjoy a full afternoon tea service, like we were doing that afternoon.

Joining me were Jayne, Britta and Whitney, and the four of us unanimously decided to order UTM's special summer service - the Pink Flamingo. Sounds amazing already right? It was:

Pink Flamingo Tea Service at Urban Tea Merchant in Vancouver, menu

The entire service began with an adorable little sample of one of their brand new teas - a jasmine something-or-other (I asked our waitress twice what this one was called, but then I promptly forgot what she said each time). It was SO good that I accidentally kept making audible "mmm" noises after each sip.

Small glass of jasmine tea

Next came our Pink Flamingo Cosmopolitan signature cocktails (which 3 out of the 4 of us ordered as alcohol-free mocktails instead). This was really lovely and tasted like a coconutty-sherbet, slightly-fizzy, holiday punch. It was even garnished with a small dried rose bud.

Pink Flamingo Cosmopolitan, Urban Tea Merchant, Vancouver

Partway through our drinks we were brought out our pots of tea. Each of our tea services came with an $8 credit towards a pot of any of their teas. There were SO many incredible-sounding teas to choose from. I debated between some minty or jasmine or fruity options before deciding on a whim to go with their Caramel black tea. SUCH A GOOD DECISION. It instantly made the air smell delicious when the pot of it was set before me on the table. I finished the entire pot, which lasted me throughout the rest of the 2-hour service.

Cup of caramel black tea
Soon they brought out two large glass trays of gorgeous and colorful sweet and savory food and set it down in the center of our table. All four of us being bloggers, we all immediately took several pictures of the display before any of us dared to disturb the photo op by digging in.

Pink Flamingo Tea Service, full tray of food

Hanging out with other bloggers makes a mandatory food photoshoot seem completely normal, by the way. I like that.

.  check out britta's huge camera on the left  .
.  jayne is instagramming at the top of the pic and whitney is IGing from the right  .

Savory dishes on the menu for us included:
  • miso-maple glazed sable fish in butter lettuce (this was my FAVORITE!)
  • “Dignitary’s Tea” chicken cone (a sophisticated chicken salad in a sesame waffle cone)
  • wasabi and smoked salmon with ponzu jelly (salmon folded onto a piece of brown bread with a jelly)
  • “Tokyo-Singapore Tea” seared tuna tataki (like a mini-wrap of seared tuna and cabbage)
Sweet items on our menu:
  • a TWG Tea “Bain de Roses” macaron (this was my first macaron ever, I'm pretty sure)
  • “Pink Flamingo” panna cotta (topped with a raspberry and a blackberry)
  • “Pink Flamingo” petit ├ęclair - the daintiest little eclair I've ever seen
.  as seen on my own IG  .
As mentioned above, the sable fish in butter lettuce was my favorite. I love butter lettuce (Dave has referred to it as "the Cadillac of lettuces"), and the crispy strips that topped the fish added such a nice crunch. The rosey macaron was so unusual, in that it's sort of strange to eat something that tastes so floral, but ultimately I liked it!

On top of the drinks, tea, and food being so enjoyable, the company was fabulous as well. Whitney, Britta and Jayne are all very nice, interesting, and easy-to-talk-to ladies. (Ladies? Girls? Women? I never know what term to use to refer to a group of females in their 20s/30s. Help me.) I'm glad we got together over something so classy ;)

.  left to right:  jayne, whitney, me, britta  .
.  thanks britta for letting me steal this pic ;)  .

Oh and speaking of classy, I did don a dress for the occasion and had fun picking out some accessories to go with it:
White lacy dress, beige booties, brown bag, fishtail braid
.  blurry selfie!  .
White lacy dress, beige booties
.  lacy dress  .
Stacked bracelets
.  banglez n frecklez  .
If you're in Vancouver and looking for something fancy to do with your girlfriends, you would be wise to go to The Urban Tea Merchant at some point or another. There are several different tea services you can choose from, plus a separate menu of more traditional food items you can order from.

Have you been out to "high tea" anywhere in your town?
What's your favorite type of tea to drink?

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This post isn't sponsored. I just love food.
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  1. wow. that food spread looks amazing!

  2. My favorite line: "Hanging out with other bloggers makes a mandatory food photoshoot seem completely normal, by the way. I like that." :) Also, cute outfit, and that side braid is fab!

  3. That was so much fun!! We got to do this again before you move! I loved your dress, so perfect for high tea! And lol, agreed! Bloggers understand the importance of pictures before trying the stuff out :P Loved how our group picture turned out!!

    Macarons and Mischief

    1. I agree that we all need to get together again soon!! Brunch and thrifting :)

  4. you looked so great. AND I'M SO JEALOUS. ZOMGSS..... lol wish i was there.

    1. Ooooh, thanks girrrl! And UMMM yes, wish you were there, too!

  5. Awww I'm so sad I missed out on this! Your outfit is spot on and the tea set looks delicious, although I'm kinda sad that they put it on a flat plate. I love those 3 tier ones and it doesn't feel like tea service without it haha

  6. I had a wonderful time and just looking at that food makes me want to go again!


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