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Afternoon Tea in downtown TO? Advice please!

grey squirrel Feb 22, 2010 12:50 PM

Hi

I am an English girl with an upcoming birthday and am looking for recommendations and suggestions for a good old fashioned Afternoon Tea.

I have heard that the Fairmount and King Edward are decent - what's your opinion?

Thanks

GS

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King Edward Hotel
37 King St E, Toronto, ON M5C, CA

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  1. TorontoJo RE: grey squirrel Feb 22, 2010 01:03 PM

    Here are a few threads that may help. I think it depends on the type of experience you're looking for. But it seems like for an old fashioned experience, the King Eddy, Royal York (Fairmount) and the Windsor Arms are the way to go.

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/620891
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/653109
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/344855

    And bless you for calling it afternoon tea. :)

    2 Replies
    1. re: TorontoJo
      grey squirrel RE: TorontoJo Feb 22, 2010 01:39 PM

      Thanks torontoJo - those links are really helpful x

      1. re: TorontoJo
        p
        piccola RE: TorontoJo Feb 22, 2010 04:58 PM

        I had a great experience at the Windsor Arms, for the record.

      2. b
        breezey RE: grey squirrel Feb 23, 2010 03:59 PM

        Have been to the Windor Arms, King Eddy, Park Plaza and Royal York. The WIndor Arms by far is the best atmosphere and overall tea experience. Have been back over and over. Love it!!!

        1. g
          Giulia_F RE: grey squirrel Feb 24, 2010 06:42 AM

          By far, the King Edward Hotel - great tea, beautiful ambiance, and wonderful food. I've also been to tea at the Four Seasons, the Royal York, and the Hyatt, so I've been around a few places.

          Enjoy!

          1. j
            JennaBean RE: grey squirrel Feb 24, 2010 10:31 AM

            My pref is the Windsor Arms hands down.

            1. d
              ddelicious RE: grey squirrel Feb 25, 2010 01:21 PM

              I prefer the four seasons. I have also heard this place is good: http://www.madeleines.ca/index_files/...

              1. r
                rapsrealm RE: grey squirrel Feb 25, 2010 03:10 PM

                I've been to both Royal York and Windsor Arms. Both are charming places and Windsor Arms is a bit more cozy and has a better environment since they have a "tea room", but at the same time its steep on the weekend at $38/pp.

                2 Replies
                1. re: rapsrealm
                  Food Tourist RE: rapsrealm Apr 6, 2010 08:36 AM

                  The price at Windsor Arms has become shockingly and unjustifiably high! ($30 weekdays, $38 on weekends and holidays!)

                  Annona at Park Hyatt nearby does a lovely afternoon tea between 3-5 pm for only $26.

                  The Four Seasons is substandard for the price (sandwiches tend to dry out before being served).

                  C5 at ROM afternoon tea is on hiatus until June/summer.

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                  Park Hyatt
                  Toronto, ON, Toronto, ON , CA

                  Windsor Arms
                  18 St Thomas St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                  1. re: Food Tourist
                    t
                    Tovah RE: Food Tourist Apr 6, 2010 02:02 PM

                    I agree that the Windsor Arms is outrageously expensive, and there is no choice but to have their full tea on the weekends. You cannot order just tea and scones, even if that is all you want. That being said, their scones are lovely, probably the best I have ever tasted. The service at the Royal York was not great and neither was the food.

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                    Windsor Arms
                    18 St Thomas St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                2. s
                  Sarah Cat RE: grey squirrel Apr 6, 2010 02:37 PM

                  The C5 restaurant in the ROM is supposed to have a fantastic afternoon tea. I believe Joanne Kates reviewed it a while back. I've been meaning to go.

                  1. l
                    leesar RE: grey squirrel Apr 6, 2010 05:39 PM

                    I called the Royal York last week because I couldn't find anything on their website about afternoon tea. I was told that they no longer do afternoon tea.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: leesar
                      b
                      breezey RE: leesar Apr 7, 2010 10:16 AM

                      Good thing EPIC in Royal York doesn't do afternoon tea any longer. I wrote a review of our experience there on tripadvisor. Couldnt believe how poorly a job they did when compared to other afternoon teas in the city. When speaking to one of the staff there regarding their imbalance of desserts to savoury (he agreed way too many french pastry type gooey desserts) which was far from a true english tea experience, he advised that others had commented on the same problem but the chef wouldnt budge on making changes. We actually left there disappointed.
                      Another great tea experience if you want to go out of town is Langdon Hall. Beautiful room, lovely tea.

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                      Langdon Hall
                      1 Langdon Drive, Cambridge, ON N3H 4R8, Canada

                      1. re: leesar
                        jinglotte RE: leesar Apr 13, 2011 12:45 PM

                        Fairmont Royal York offers afternoon tea on Saturdays and Sundays from 12:30pm onward

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                        The Fairmont Royal York
                        100 Front St W, Toronto, ON M5J, CA

                      2. FoodieGirl29 RE: grey squirrel Apr 7, 2010 12:09 PM

                        I have been to the Royal York, Park Hyatt and Windsor Arms.

                        The WA was by far my favourite - innovative sandwiches, gorgeous pastry tower. The Park Hyatt was a bit more modern, but the room is light-filled and lovely. I actually enjoyed the Royal York, and it was only $20 when we had gone. I also love the Coach House & Patio at Red Tea Box when the weather is sunny.

                        From other sources, I heard high tea at the King Eddy is the best.

                        Lisa - The Hip & Urban Girl's Guide @ http://www.hipurbangirl.com

                        -----
                        Red Tea Box
                        696 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1E7, CA

                        Park Hyatt
                        Toronto, ON, Toronto, ON , CA

                        Windsor Arms
                        18 St Thomas St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                        Coach House
                        574 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4Y1Z3, CA

                        1. k
                          katbri RE: grey squirrel Apr 8, 2010 06:46 AM

                          I'm going to the Park Hyatt on Saturday, will report back.

                          Has anyone beem there? What was your experience?

                          Is it appropriate to wear jeans?

                          -----
                          Park Hyatt
                          Toronto, ON, Toronto, ON , CA

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: katbri
                            d
                            daeira RE: katbri Apr 8, 2010 07:53 AM

                            I've been to Park Hyatt a few times for tea. The room is very modern and has a nice atmosphere. I actually prefer the Park Hyatt over Four Seasons and the King Eddy. I do like Windsor Arms, particularly the back room.

                            On the occasions I've been to Park Hyatt, I have seen people wearing jeans (dress jeans not casual jeans). Hope you enjoy it.

                            1. re: daeira
                              b
                              breezey RE: daeira Apr 8, 2010 08:37 AM

                              The Park Hyatt Tea is served in their main floor coffee shop so saw all sorts of clothing including jeans when we were there. Service was great, nice choices and flexible (my daughter is a vegetarian) but atmosphere is more of an upscale hotel coffee shop, thats the main reason I personally prefer the Windwor Arms for its added ambiance. But you wont be disappointed in Park Hyatt. Enjoy......

                              -----
                              Park Hyatt
                              Toronto, ON, Toronto, ON , CA

                              1. re: breezey
                                Food Tourist RE: breezey Apr 8, 2010 11:56 AM

                                Do you know when they changed the afternoon tea location to the coffee shop? When I went in 2009, it was in the main dining room (Annona) which is beautiful.

                                A lot of die-hard fans of the "old" Windsor Arms HATE the newer purple decor in the main tea room. As someone who worked there in 2005, I can say that the price increase is NOT justified especially since the ONLY change is the scones got worse -- the rest of the food hasn't changed (and those sandwiches are NOT innovative!)

                                -----
                                Windsor Arms
                                18 St Thomas St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                                1. re: Food Tourist
                                  k
                                  katbri RE: Food Tourist Apr 8, 2010 01:31 PM

                                  According to their website afternoon tea is in Annona Restaurant.

                                  1. re: katbri
                                    b
                                    breezey RE: katbri Apr 8, 2010 02:26 PM

                                    Well that's good news. Guess will try Hyatt again.

                          2. j
                            jnine RE: grey squirrel Apr 8, 2010 04:22 PM

                            For something a little different, but still elegant and feminine, try Red Tea Box

                            -----
                            Red Tea Box
                            696 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1E7, CA

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: jnine
                              c
                              Calam1ty RE: jnine Apr 9, 2010 02:40 PM

                              I agree that Red Tea Box is a lovely experience. All the teas I have had in Toronto were too heavy on the sweets - the King Eddy being the worst or the best for that, depending on whether you can handle the sugar overload - I can't. Having had loads of teas in the UK, i guess I am jaded.

                              -----
                              Red Tea Box
                              696 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1E7, CA

                              1. re: jnine
                                c
                                CocoTO RE: jnine Dec 10, 2010 12:30 PM

                                I'm a third endorser of the Red Tea Box ... go to the back room through the small courtyard for a lovely, eclectic venue. Less formal than one of the hotel teas though, so if that's what you're looking for, may not suit.

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                                Red Tea Box
                                696 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1E7, CA

                              2. g
                                Giulia_F RE: grey squirrel Apr 9, 2010 01:05 PM

                                Hello English Girl - hands down, the King Edward - my most favourite place for tea...I've been to the Hyatt, Four Seasons, Windsor Arms, Old Mill, The Royal York, and the Eddie is my favourite....

                                -----
                                Old Mill
                                21 Old Mill Road, Toronto, ON M8X 1G5, CA

                                Windsor Arms
                                18 St Thomas St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                                1. f
                                  food4thot RE: grey squirrel Apr 10, 2010 12:58 AM

                                  Four Seasons all the way!

                                  1. Food Tourist RE: grey squirrel Apr 10, 2011 03:44 PM

                                    Sadly, the afternoon tea at C5 is on hiatus again and no guarantees they will restart it this summer.

                                    Annona at Park Hyatt is still best value in Yorkville area.

                                    MoRoCo actually has the nerve to charge $55 plus tax for afternoon tea! Ridiculous. Does not include alcohol or anything that makes sandwiches, scones, pastries and tea/sipping chocolate worth it.

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