Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Harrods Tea Room in Bangkok, Emquartier Mall

We decided today to go to Harrods tea room in the capital of Thailand, to try out the famous and stereotypical "English Afternoon Tea" here at the Emquartier Mall, just next to the Phrom Phong BTS station (the skytrain). There is also another Harrods Tea Room in the Siam Paragon Mall which to be fair is in a bigger Mall but usually overcrowded. Now if you don't know what the Afternoon Tea is, it was introduced by the Duchess of Bedford in the 1800's as her dinner was quite late at night and she wanted to have a snack between meals, but as she was rich and could afford a luxury snack, bread and butter was just not simply good enough for her. You can research more if you wish to but this is just a snippet of info for you.

Anyhow getting back on track with the review. We entered the tea room and was greeted by a gentleman who looked more like a member of a traditional ice cream parlour rather than the tradition english outfit you would expect, but seeing as they sell ice cream it kind of makes sense and he was dressed smart to be fair to him. He kindly gave us the option to sit down and we decided to sit in a half booth at the corner of the cafe as it looked comfortable and quiet. We asked a couple of couple of questions on the menu and seeing as the gentleman had "trainee" on his badge he was well informed and know exactly everything off the menu, for this we give Harrods and its training full marks on this. As we looked at the menu and decided what we would like, he came over with a nice petit tray and laid the table in front of us.

We didn't have the menu for long as we already knew what to order, so we ordered the midrange price afternoon tea set and couldn't resist to order the "beef pot pie" as its a popular dish to eat in England and it just sounded so good, we had to try it,. With this, in my opinion, afternoon tea should really come with English breakfast tea and none of the fruit tea's as for me, fruit tea's wasn't around in the 1800's and english breakfast is as close to the original as you can get unless you get loose tea, which they did not have to order.

After only a few minutes the pie came out first, which makes me think did they just microwave it as you can't cook a pie from fresh in that time and it was too hot to be under the hot lamps to keep warm for you, but anyhow it was delicious and the meat inside was so tender with a rich gravy. We literally demolished the pot pie in the matter of seconds as it was too good to let go cold. Next came out the afternoon tea set which on first impressions (and you get this everywhere that sells afternoon tea) looks small, but that is the point, its meant to be a snack and not a meal. The afternoon tea came with 2 scones with what looked like home made whipped cream, a duel berry jam and 3 macaroons. If I'm going to be honest with you it is expensive for what it is but for a nice treat now and again its a nice afternoon to relax and catch up with friends. At this point we are still waiting for our hot tea and as i look up to get the attention of the waiter he is actually coming over with a small pot for us to share.

As the gentleman came over with the tea, he decided to pour the tea for us in the cups i was about to stop doing this but it was too late, the tea was poured in the small cups. For Harrods to do this is a nice touch but you should really let the tea bags sit in the boiling water and let it fuse, if not you end up with weak tea in the cup which obviously we got, not to worry and with him saying we could have a free refill it was all ok. With the whipped cream and berry jam, there was barely enough to put on 1 scone let alone 2 so we quickly run out as personally we like a good spread on the scone to get the taste. We asked could we get more jam as there was clearly not enough and the waiter kindly went and got us more jam. Be warned everyone, they charge you extra for this, and its not cheap (38.60 Baht) and you can get a jar of this at the supermarket for it, just beware of the hidden charge here unless they specifically say to you, then its you option.

Overall we found this a nice experience and could quite possibly come back in the near future, we found a couple of problems with the place, like the hidden extra jam charge, the tea being poured without letting the tea mature and 2 light bulbs not working which really should not be like this with the standard of Harrods. Although it is a really nice treat to take your partner or meet up with friends to have a chat and pass the time away instead of going to the usual coffee shop you go into, and to experience something a little different with different food and drinks. You should go for "Afternoon Tea" at least once in your life no matter where in the world and trust us gents its a huge hit with the ladies.