Shangri-La Vancouver launched a Chinese New Year special afternoon tea promotion at the Xi Shi Lounge. Any customer born in the year of horse will be able to enjoy a complimentary afternoon tea with a company of their choice. This offer was limited to one guest per table with a minimum party of two. Customers who are not born in the year of horse will be charged $38 per person.
I was one of the lucky horse gal who enjoyed a complimentary afternoon tea at Xi Shi Lounge.
The afternoon tea set comes with a pot of lose leaf tea of your choice. Tea varies from green tea, herbal tea, to black tea and oolong tea types.
I ordered the lychee with rose and almond black tea. This is a medium bodied Ceylon Pekoe complemented by lychee, almond and rose.
My boyfriend ordered the rose with French vanilla black tea. It is a seductive tea that embraces the sweet floral aroma of rose petals. Tinged with the flavour of French vanilla.
This Chinese New Year afternoon tea does not come in the tradition style of British high tea snack bites. It was a fusion of traditional Chinese palette with western style finger bites.
The savoury sandwich selections include BBQ pork brioche bun, crispy duck spring roll, curried tofu wrap, and smoked salmon bagel. There’s nothing special about the smoked salmon bagel. It’s just like another regular bagel with cream cheese on it.
A closer look at the BBQ pork buns. They are like little hamburger with the regular BBQ pork we get from traditional dim sum “cha siu bao.” I didn’t quite enjoy this bite cause the bread was really dry and it didn’t taste fresh. There was not much sauce with the meat and the meat was cold.
Closer look at the curry tofu wrap and the crispy duck spring roll. I could not taste any curry flavour in the wrap but it was a delightful bite. The crispy duck spring roll was my favourite out of all the other little bites in this afternoon tea set.
The second level up was scones. It came with plain scones and orange flavour scones. But to be honest, we couldn’t tell any difference. The scones are not dry so that’s good. But it is not soft and fluffy enough to say they were great.
The scones came with homemade jam selection and clotted cream. Very smooth cream, and wonderful jam.
The top level is dessert bites including green tea opera cake, coconut rice cake, egg tarts, and black sesame dumplings with ginger syrup served on the side. None of the bites were overly sweet so that is something good about it. I appreciate that they served homemade coconut rice cake. You can tell by the colour. The one we buy in stores have a bright red colour because Chinese believes red is a lucky colour so food factory add red food colouring to the coconut rice cake. Only homemade rice cake will not have that vibrate colour.
I really like the black sesame dumpling with the ginger syrup. The ginger taste was really strong and it was really appealing to me.
Xi Shi Lounge provided entertainment, a performer playing erhu (a Chinese musical instrument). Very strong Chinese New Year atmosphere but the music was too loud to make enjoyable conversations with my company. Serve was excellent. Overall it was alright. I wouldn’t be enjoying it as much if I would had to pay full cost for its afternoon set.
Here’s a complete view of the afternoon tea set (with me in it! and my boyfriend! :P)