Weekend Cafe Hot Spot: Parlour, New Acton

Sophia Carlini 19 April 2016

I purposely avoid reviewing cafes where someone has asked me to come in to write a weekend hot spot. What makes my Weekend Hot Spot articles a good read (well what I think at least), is my honesty. I never eat at a cafe and then write an amazing review, if it wasn’t amazing. I will always tell it as it is. Recently I made an exception.

When the team at Parlour contacted me to come and try their new High Tea, I was pretty chuffed to be honest. They noted in their email that they specifically wanted me to come and check it out because they knew I would be honest and give them constructive critsicim. Someone’s been paying attention to my Weekend Hot Spot reviews!

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I invited Mike and two friends along for the 4pm, Saturday session. I was so excited, it was the warmest Saturday we’ve had in forever and I was finally able to get back into a cute summery dress and cute peep toe heels: the perfect high tea attire. We were lucky enough to also be seated outside on the big couches — we had everything we needed to make the perfect afternoon.

As soon as we were seated, we were offered tea and coffee and were each poured a big glass of pink champagne.

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Shortly after, two massive high tea stands and two additional plates were delivered to our table, full of savoury and sweet treats. I don’t think any of us could decide if we wanted to start with sweet or with savoury. I’m definitely a savoury girl; I went straight for the mushroom risotto balls. The others started with dessert and worked their way back to savoury.

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What we had (from memory):

  • Mushroom risotto balls
  • Finger sandwiches
  • Caramelised onion tarts
  • Tuna (I think) on crackers with a beautiful cream, some caviar and micro herbs (This was probably my favourite)
  • Chocolate mousse with blueberries (A-Mazing!)
  • Some kind of biscuit thing with fresh cream. It was almost like eating a biscuit version of a scone.
  • Lemon tart
  • Bread & Butter pudding
  • Chocolate covered strawberries
  • Swan profiteroles

I tried everything, but there was no way I was going to be able to finish it all! At the end, the waiter asked me if we thought there was enough food included in the high tea; I kind of thought he was joking but he wasn’t. In all fairness, it was a very valid question. Too many times have I been to a high tea and have left being disappointed and hungry. You will not have this problem at Parlour.

I bet you are curious to know what feedback I gave them … well to be honest, everything was pretty wonderful. I only gave criticism for two items and made one single improvement suggestion. I know! I was surprised myself, but also definitely glad. I love it when businesses get it right!

I gave feedback on the sandwich bread being a little stale however, I know that this is because the sandwiches are made fresh in the morning, and I was having high tea at 4 in the afternoon. I also noted that I didn’t really find the bread & butter dessert very appealing. It reminded me of this Macedonian dish my boyfriend eats where he soaks bread in milk, microwaves it and covers it in sugar – he loves it, I can’t stand it! So, I could be a little bias. My final suggestion was to swap out the biscuit and cream things and replace them with scones; everybody loves scones, and for me, when you think high tea, you think scones.

We had the most wonderful afternoon and Parlour is the perfect setting for a high tea. If you are interested in checking out, you can find Parlour in Kendall Lane (number 16), New Acton.

High Tea is $45 per person and is available on Saturday’s between 11am & 2pm and 2:30 & 5pm, as well a Sunday’s between 11am & 2pm. Bookings are essential.


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