High tea is the perfect irony. It's marketed as lady-like refinement,
genteel tea sipping from Royal Dalton in white gloves, and as much food as you
can eat. A dressed up gorge-fest seemed like the perfect birthday celebration
for This Girl.
I went looking for a high tea venue and found some recent poor reviews.
What to do?
I came across a Facebook post. Cake and Cater is Selena and Ceri, two
women who are passionate about making great food. A couple of photos on the
post won me over and I was messaging them at 6 o’clock in the morning.
Cake and Cater has been in the business around two years and they
already have a huge repertoire of catering and cake selections. They encouraged
me to pick a selection I liked and provided a quote.
In my designer high tea, I decided there wouldn’t be asparagus and cream
cheese or cucumber sandwiches. Instead I went for pork mini-burgers with mango
chutney, curried chicken vol au vents, pumpkin and feta mini quiche, and lamb
For sweets I chose the obligatory scones, jam and cream, and also went
with little lemon tarts, meringue with fresh seasonal fruits and my birthday
pick – chocolate peanut butter cupcakes.
Four sweet and four savoury options cost around $26 per person. This
compares with high tea elsewhere for anything from around $30 - $45. Everyone
paid $30 which contributed to tea, coffee and a glass or two of champagne.
I borrowed fancy crockery and cutlery from a friend. Another friend made
paper decorations for the occasion. I bought some fresh flowers and of course I
spent a few hours cleaning the house before guests arrived.
Cake and Cater were responsive and accommodating in all my dealings with
them as I had to go back to them a few times as numbers changed. They don’t normally
cater tea and coffee but were willing to do this for me if I wanted. In the end
I elected to do this myself. I even got a comforting text the morning of the
party to let me know everything was going according to plan. I was happy with
the price and the food was of good quality. The overall view of the group was
that the food was delicious. The burgers were a decent size with
counterbalanced tastes – the savoury pork, the sweet apricot, the tart cucumber. The quiche and vol au vents were canape-sized so I was pleased the
burgers were a bit larger so the savoury course was of sufficient size.
The highlight of the sweets course was definitely the cupcake. They have
a large range of choices but the peanut butter and chocolate was a
good combo and they looked lovely. The party’s consensus was that the meringue,
like the pastry vol au vent and lemon tart cases, seemed to be pre-made. They
were still enjoyable but it took a little of the lustre off.
Here’s the wrap on design your own high tea.
- House cleaning
- Serving guests (until I
forgot because I’d drunk too much champagne and they had to help themselves).
- Thinking of the little things
you’d change to lift some selections from good to great like a little orange
flower blossom and orange zest on the meringues’ strawberries.
- A little more organisation
for a party-presentation.
- Choosing all the food you
want to eat.
- Professional people who
turn up just early enough with lovely food and a friendly disposition.
- Good value for money – not
everyone could eat each of their selections. In particular, the sweet serves
- Home is a more relaxed
setting where you can dwell and take a walk down the backyard to look at the
guinea pigs and quail.
I would definitely use Cake and Cater again.
The Two Girls have had a couple of good high tea experiences – Jam and Bread (2014)