Afternoon Tea - Shangri-la, Abu Dhabi
|White Orchid arrangement in the centre of the lounge.|
The staff are, as usual, warm, friendly and engaging. I have often waxed poetically about the 'service from the heart' philosophy at Shangri-la. In my first 3 minutes I interact with three waitresses and they live up to the philosophy.
|The Australian Sparkling wine|
|Earl Grey tea.|
The atmosphere is perfect. There is an oud player who provides background music. I enjoy it as my sparkling wine is opened. I am served by the same waitress who a year ago did not know much about wine, other than that red goes with beef and white with fish. Today, she is different. She has grown. Confidently she tells me about the sparkling wine she is pouring. As she talks, there is, excuse the pun, a sparkle in her eyes. It speaks of confidence.
|3 tiers of delight.|
Soon after, a 3-tier stand is placed in front of me. It is really enough for two. The bottom tier has all your savory delights - chicken, salmon, bacon and avocado sandwiches. The middle tier consists of a variety of 3 scones, cream and 'jam'. I say 'jam' because it is so much more than jam. The is strawberry jam is real strawberries in a sauce - no sugar added. Also, there is a blueberry sauce with chunky bits of blueberries. Sweet, but not nauseatingly so. Still, a nice contrast to the strawberries.
|The beautiful bubbles in this Perrier Jouet Grand Brut.|
|One of my favourites, the tomato with rosemary.|
I end off the afternoon with the top top tier which is a sweet treat. Macarons and fresh fruit catch my eye. The fresh fruit - melon and strawberries are sweet and fresh, balanced nicely by the dragon fruit, which as you know, is very subtle in taste.
Before I know it, three hours have passed. I cannot believe it. Thanks to the substantial spread, the bubbly, tea and the typical Shangri-la service, time went by so fast. Henry James' words rang in my mind as I got up to leave: 'There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea'. In my case, it was three hours well spent.
The low down
Afternoon tea in The Lobby Lounge,
Shangri-la, Abu Dhabi
971 2 509 8888
Afternoon Tea 90 - 100 Dhs incl. tea ++
Chandon Domaine Brut 70 Dhs ++
Perrier Jouet Grand Brut 125 Dhs ++