Sunday, July 20, 2014

Devonian Garden - Rose Day High Tea


The University of Alberta's Devonian Botanic Garden hosts an annual Rose Day High Tea in July. The garden is a 40-minute drive to the southwest of Edmonton, just north of a small town called Devon. Admission to the grounds is free with purchase of the high tea, so it's a good opportunity to check the place out. I attended this event last year, and I'm sure it was just as popular this year. I prepaid for tickets online and picked them up at the greeting table outside of the garden entrance. We followed the signs all the way to the Pine Pavilion where tables with settings were already set up for the event.


We were assigned to the Grebe table, which we shared with a few other visitors. Tea was standard black tea served by the pot.


The food was catered and I saw the staff unpacking and loading items onto the tiered towers. Needless to say, the quality wasn't particularly impressive, but I didn't expect too much anyway.


On the bottom tier were the cucumber mozzarella sandwich, shrimp mayo sandwich, and egg salad sandwich. The fillings weren't that great, but the bread was very soft and fluffy.


The dessert tier was probably the most palatable tier. The chewy Florentine, the chocolate cup with cream and stewed cherry, the shortbread with fennel seeds, the macarons, and the chocolate meringue were all quite decent. I really liked the marmalade filling in the orange macaron, and the chocolate meringue tasted similar to the one from Duchess Bake Shop.


The scones were the most disappointing part of the experience. All three flavours (cranberry, blueberry, cheese) were cold, soggy, and undercooked. The strawberry preserve was fresh, but the cream was hard and didn't spread at all.


The high tea was really not the highlight; it just gave me a reason to come visit the garden. What a relaxing afternoon to take a stroll among the greenery after a spot of tea!

Kurimoto Japanese Garden
Tropical Butterfly House
There was also a gift shop at the garden entrance where I picked up a few pairs of fancy chopsticks to take home. Overall it was a nice little visit, and I would recommend taking time out of your busy schedule to come check it out.
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3 comments:

Roxy on July 29, 2014 2:57 pm said...

The best tea is in the Rutherford House at the U of A. Check it out - I would also love to hear your review of Padamandi restaurant!

krispy on July 29, 2014 5:11 pm said...

Yes agreed! I loved the scones and the ambiance at Rutherford House http://www.krispybites.com/2013/06/rutherford-house-afternoon-tea.html, but unfortunately they are closed permanently due to financial issues. Padmanadi is definitely on my to-try list!

Roxy on July 29, 2014 8:55 pm said...

Oh thanks for posting your review - such good pictures and good memories. I didn't know that about Rutherford house. How sad.

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