(Melbourne) Hopetoun Tea Rooms

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Hopetoun Tea Rooms is undoubtedly one of the most popular dessert places in town and if you spot a crowd behind the Collins Street entrance of the Block Arcade, you’ll know you’re at the right place. Famous for its high tea and delectable cakes, which already look so tempting on the display, Hopetoun Tea Rooms is the place to go if you’re looking for great dessert in town and have extra cash to spend. Recently, my cousins came to visit and this was one of the places on my to-go list for food, and we thoroughly enjoyed it here. Situated immediately after the entrance of the Block Arcade when you walk in, Hopetoun Tea Rooms is also strategically located in the heart of the CBD surrounded by other malls and shops along Collins Street, which is constantly bustling with people and well-known for offering a high-end shopping experience. So if you find yourself with a free afternoon (and some money) to spare one day, why not give it a try?


 – General Review –

  •  Service: 8.7/10

Hopetoun Tea Rooms offers excellent customer service, where most of the staff are extremely friendly, polite, helpful, and attentive. But aside from high-tea, customers won’t be able to make reservations, so you’ll have to arrive here earlier in order to get a seat and avoid the long queue. Try and be here early at around 2.30pm (if you want afternoon snack or dessert), since the queue’s usually the longest at around 3 or 4pm. You will need to make a reservation for high tea, which can be made online through Hopetoun Tea Rooms’ website.

  • Servicescape: 8.3/10

Hopetoun Tea Rooms is recognized for its beautiful and dim dark green interior and a selection of mouth-watering cakes that are on display. Interior-wise, it’s a little small and cramped with limited seats, but exudes a very relaxing and comfortable atmosphere. There are few but fancy decorations, which can’t help but promote a feeling of exclusivity (and seriously, you’ll instantly feel a little classier). It’s definitely a place you’d want to go to have a nice and long chat with family or friends while enjoying a variety of exquisite cakes and desserts.

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  • Non-smoking area: Yes, all seats are located indoors and entirely non-smoking.
  • Vegetarian dishes: Yes, but quite limited.
  • Price range: $$ (AU$7.50 – $15 for most individual cake slices. There’s a separate menu for breakfast, lunch and whole cakes.)

Overall Rating: 8.8/10


 – Food Experience –

** Individual cake pieces range from $7.50 to $9.50 as Hopetoun Tea Rooms offers a dynamic and seasonal menu. Therefore, several items are limited, depending on the changing flavors of the week or month. You could always come back from time to time to try new and different ones!

 

1) Lemon Meringue:

The Lemon Meringue is one of the cakes that is usually always available and that I’ve ordered every single time I visit. It’s definitely one of my favorites, and a main factor that influenced my preference for desserts that are both sweet and sour thereafter. At first glance, it might seem a little overwhelming and I’ve heard the all-too-familiar disbelieving cries of “look at that cream!” but trust me – it’s good. And the fluffy and sweet meringue’s there for a reason – to balance the sourness from the lemon filling – and the crust at the bottom gave a firmer and crumbly texture from the otherwise soft and spongy dessert. A small heap of cream, single slice of kiwi, strawberry and orange served on the side. Definitely one of the must-tries, especially for those who prefer something a little sour!

Lemon Meringue

Lemon Meringue

2) Raspberry Mousse:

The Raspberry Mousse was also an absolute delight. It was a little sour as well, and very soft but a little more springy compared to the Lemon Meringue. There were hints and bits of raspberry within that gave a little more texture to the mousse. Again, the cream and small fruit slices at the side completed the dish.

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Raspberry Mousse

3) Soft-centered Chocolate Pudding:

The Soft-centered Chocolate Pudding wasn’t part of the dessert on display but one of the items on the menu instead. It was beautifully presented (look at that!), and also another one of my favorites from Hopetoun Tea Rooms. The pudding wasn’t too crumbly that it disintegrates easily, but not too soft either. The melted chocolate inside was a little bitter, which balanced the overall sweetness well. The pudding was accompanied by a scoop of not-too-sweet vanilla ice cream, raspberries, blueberries and crushed pistachio. The dessert was also decorated with warm chocolate sauce and drops of raspberry sauce.

Soft-centered Chocolate Pudding ($15)

Soft-centered Chocolate Pudding ($15)

4) Tea – Buddha’s Finger, Dahl House, Congo Bongo:

What’s afternoon tea without tea? We ordered a variety of tea and they all tasted pretty good. Buddha’s Finger was a dark and rich oolong tea but with very subtle hints of peach, which I could barely taste though. Dahl House wasn’t very bitter, and the black tea also had hints of peach and ginger. The Congo Bongo tea was one of the most distinct ones that I remember – black tea with coconut and mango. I’m not a big fan of coconut, but its aroma and taste wasn’t too overwhelming, and it gave a very distinct and pleasant flavor to the otherwise common tea.

Buddha's Finger, Dahl House, Congo Bongo

Buddha’s Finger, Dahl House, Congo Bongo ($5.50 – $6.20)

 

Location: Shop 1 & 2, 282 Collins Street, Block Arcade Studios, Melbourne – VIC, Australia (3000)

Contact number: +61 3 9650 2777

Website: Hopetoun Tea Rooms

Operating hours: Mon-Sat: 8am – 5pm

Sun: 9am – 5pm

Posted by: V

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