The Palace Tea Room
Queen Victoria Building
George St Sydney CBD

We had the pleasure of visiting The Palace Tea Room which is owned by Manuel and Gwen Spinola and is quietly located on Level 1 of Sydney’s historic Queen Victoria Building. The tea room is an elegant retreat from the hustle and bustle of Sydney’s CBD and is a tribute to Victorian tea drinking; it has a large dining area, as well as external seating that runs along the QVB gallery, with plenty of tables and chairs.

The external seating allows you to gaze over the railing to the floor below and also have a great close up view of the gorgeous QVB clock.

Upon arrival we were greeted by the tea room’s manager, Alex, and chose to sit inside amongst the cosy surrounds and aromas of the tea room with it’s thick drapes, beautiful chandeliers and plush seating.

We decided to start with cappuccinos while we eagerly awaited our Traditional Afternoon Tea – a selection of cakes, petit pastries, finger sandwiches, scones and tea.

Our treats arrived on a beautiful three tiered china cake stand and Alex explained each tier to us. The first two tiers were made up of sweet cakes, while the bottom tier held the scones, crustless finger sandwiches and other savouries. Where to begin?

Well, we began with the array of savouries and started with the trio sandwiches – a flavoursome chicken sandwich on seeded bread, a traditional egg sandwich on white bread and a tuna sandwich on brown bread.  The bread was soft and the sandwiches were delicious, with something for everyone.

Next, we delighted in the crab coronet, a  light, crisp cone shaped pastry filled with fresh flaked crab with a hint of lemongrass. Delicious.

Contessa Z’s favourite was the Parmesan cheese shortbread, sandwiched together with a sundried tomato and olive filling. It was so light and buttery and definitely melted in your mouth.

We then tried the freshly baked scones, one fruit and the other plain. The scones were light and fluffy on the inside, with a slight crunch on the outside and were good enough to eat on their own, but were even better when topped with the clotted cream and freshly made mixed berry jam, which is a staple at The Palace Tea Room. The jam was raspberry flavoured with a hint of blueberries and strawberries. Contessa D said the jam was one of the best she had ever tried.

Onwards and upwards to the first tier of our sweets, which was also the right time for us to order a nice cup of tea from the extensive selection available at The Palace Tea Room. Tea lovers, you will not be disappointed with the wide range of exotic teas to choose from, 26 in all, to be precise.

Decisions, decisions…in the end, we were guided by the manager, Alex, who suggested we try some of the tea room’s most popular teas, such as Paris Vanilla Tea, Spicy Cinnamon, Rose Floral Tea and Pomegranate Oolong. We elected to try the first two and were not disappointed. The  tea is served in beautifully ornate Royal Albert and Wedgwood fine bone china teapots, with matching teacups, milk jugs and sugar bowls, all of which adds to the old world charm of the tea room.

Each one of chef Christelle Verger’s sweets were delicious and we started with the Strawberry Macaron, which was simply divine.

The mascarpone filling was topped with blueberries and raspberries, and with a hint of strawberry from the macaron it was everything a macaron should be.

It had a light crust, with a moist meringue and a silky smooth filling.

Our next treat was a moist Mini Salted Caramel Cupcake, topped with a light frosting and delicately crowned with lightly salted caramel popcorn.

It was not too sweet and the flavours were perfectly balanced.

The lime flavoured Marshmallow Square is best described as a delicious fluffy pillow of sweet citrus.

It must be said that the most interesting combination of flavours was found in the Chocolate Vegemite Slab with Avocado Filling and Chocolate glaze. The flavours worked really well together and this sweet was a nice surprise.
Finally, we delighted in the Passionfruit and Mango Cheesecake. A beautiful dessert with a light biscuit base that complemented the cheesecake filling which was also light in texture but by no means light on flavour, and visually enticing, with swirls of fruit throughout.

The Palace Tea Room is a hidden gem in Sydney’s CBD that is a fusion of modern and Victorian charm.

The decor is elegant and the atmosphere is lovely and warm, as is the service.

The delicious food and the extensive range of exotic teas all combine to make a visit to the Palace Tea Room a must.

We highly recommended it.

Two Countessas, who are now doing reviews for Sir and Mlady Dine Out, dined as guests of The Palace Tea Room and Grand Pacific Group. Special thanks to Alex for all the help while there and to Hannah Evans for arranging this visit.

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