Afternoon tea at Robinson-Bray House

I’ve been to several afternoon tea locations in Toronto [reviews here] and I’ve kinda run out of places to visit. So we’re starting to venture out of the immediate Toronto area to smaller towns.

Last month, we went to the Robinson-Bray House for afternoon tea. I’d link you to it but their website has been suspended as of today. Erm…okay.


When you enter, it is a store front with lots of random tea pots and tea accessories.


This is the view to the back room.


Just to note, when we ordered afternoon tea, they kinda need you to tell them in advance and apparently they only serve afternoon tea from 12 – 2PM. Um it’s supposed to be eaten later in the afternoon but okay, I’m not gonna argue with you. Luckily BP made reservations and they had enough prepared for the two of us.


I asked for my tea iced and here’s a trade secret, apparently, when you pour hot tea into glass, to avoid it cracking, put something metal in it. Read more about it here


So the afternoon tea came with a salad. BP HATES food with fruit but he actually liked it.


This is the first time I’ve seen this set up. Unique.


The quiches it came with were sooo good! It made us go buy quiche soon after haha. Egg salad was the best. But of course, egg salad is always the best kind of tea sandwich in my opinion.


Scones were …scones? Nothing special.
Edit – NO these were the BEST SCONES I’VE EVER HAD. These were butterscotch freaking scones. Like I still smelled like butterscotch later on. SO GOOD. SO FLAVOURFUL. BEST EVER.


Note to every tea place…can we not have any more mini cupcakes. Cupcakes aren’t that great to begin with and mini cupcakes are just hard and terrible. STOP. No me gusta. The tart was okay but it’s like…mousse on a tart shell. What can I say….

I would recommend this place if you’re in town. I think you should definitely visit Streetsville though and check out the quaint neighbourhood.

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The Tea Room at Robinson-Bray House
Website – Well…maybe the site will work when you click on it.
223 Queen St S, Mississauga, ON
(905) 542-7674

Afternoon tea at Tintagels Tea Room (Erin, Ontario)

Over the weekend, we drove to Erin, Ontario for a little day trip. We decided to try out Tintagels Tea Room & More for High Tea – again, it was actually afternoon tea as high tea is served closer to dinner.

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It had this really cute sign at front which is next to Annie’s Antiques and owls nest gallery. But I found the display of clothes at the window very off-putting. It made it look like a thrift shop.

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It was a very cozy place with displays everywhere!! And I mean everywhere.

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See what I mean? They had several displays of tea related accessories.

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And this!!! LOL.

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I found this neat book nestled in a book case next to me.

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And it contained photos!! So Tintagels is a place in the UK which makes sense since their tagline is English fare with a British flair. Today I learned that English only refers to things/people from England whereas British refers to things/people from the United Kingdom which encompasses Scotland and Wales, and what have you. But of course, they prefer to be referred to as Scots or Welsh rather than Brits.

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It’s like Le Neuf Cafe, they had this little counter where you pay also with cute displays of dessert and little trinkets. Oh, they also serve local(ish) beer!

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This is their menu. “High tea” was only $13.95. It came with cucumber sandwiches, Scone with Devonshire Double Cream or Lemon Curd, Butter, Rootham’s Gourmet Preserves and your choice of any Dessert & pot of Tea.

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As per usual, I got myself the Peppermint tea. BP got some exotic fruit tea (as always). You know what, normally the fruit teas are a bad idea but the one they had was pretty delicious!!

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Your only choice of sandwich was…cucumber but they were pretty tasty. One of the best cucumber sandwiches I’ve had. You could really taste the butter. (Pro tip: Spread butter on your sandwich so that the bread doesn’t get soggy) And that is one big scone!!! BP really enjoyed it. Since we ordered two sets, we were able to get devonshire cream, lemon curd and two different kinds of preserves.

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The desserts came on their own. I ordered my butter tart. Delicious! They had such wonderful choices, I had a hard time but I settled on a tart.

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BP on the other hand ordered a triple berry crumble. If you like warm cooked fruit then….this is the way to go. I wouldn’t recommend it though. Mind you, their clientele were people over the age of 50 so… maybe they like that?

I would definitely recommend the tea room IF you’re up for a day trip in Erin, Ontario. Otherwise, you can always find other places closer to home for afternoon tea. Please check out my afternoon tea ratings page. Since Erin is not really considered part of the GTA, I will not include it. Next time, I’ll make it to the Old Curiosity Tea Shop in Markham Village.

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Tintagels Tea Room & More
Website
50 Main Street, Erin, Ontario, Canada, N0B1T0
519-833-0019

Winterlicious 2015 – Byzantium

Yesterday was the last day of Winterlicious 2015 in Toronto. I should have posted this post right after dinner on Monday but I honestly didn’t know anyone else going (to benefit from my review) and I didn’t want to recommend this place to anyone either. Sorry, Byzantium. You weren’t even my first choice. My group wanted to go to Trevor but they were closed on Mondays!

In terms of service, it was pretty good. The server we had was actually the manager and he was quite friendly. However, sometimes that’s not enough. The food at Byzantium was lacking. Disappointing even.

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Prior to dinner, they gave us a bread basket with flat bread and other things. The flat bread and hummus may have been the highlight of the dinner. That says a lot.

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We all had the poutine for our starters and it was not bad. It tasted pretty good despite looking kinda blah. It could use more cheese though!

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For the main, the group (except for BP and myself) ordered the lamb but according to my friend the main dish “got progressively worse. It was not worth the effort”. According to another friend, it was “aiite”.

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But I have to say, despite my friends’ comments, I think my pasta of the day (bowtie pasta with chicken) was worse. The chicken surprisingly didn’t taste dry and was not too bad but the sauce and the entire dish was just bland.

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BP was a rebel and ordered the macaroni and cheese from the regular menu. It was the best dish of the night, I think, despite looking like death.

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For dessert, I got the chocolate cake. The presentation was worse than grocery store-bought cake. It tasted on par with store-bought cake. And that stick of chocolate it came with? What even is it? Does not taste like what I thought it would be. It looks like a wafer with chocolate hazelnut inside? Nope. Nope.

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I tried the keylime pie and it tasted like lemonade to me. I don’t eat keylime pie so I cannot judge. To quote my friend, “It ended on a sour note”.

Would I come back again for food? Most likely not.

I believe there’s a DJ after a certain time. I still wouldn’t come back for that. Their women’s bathroom smells horrid! I gagged several times.

If you’re interested in checking out…. cause I mean it seems some people like it, then here’s their info:

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Byzantium
Website: Byz.ca
499 Church Street, Toronto, Ontario
416.922.3859

Winterlicious 2015 – America at Trump Hotel

So Winterlicious and Summerlicious started back in the day when the SARS outbreak scared everyone from leaving their homes – basically. So, this program was to help restaurants provide a prix-fixe sample of their menu to help boost their business. It was such a hit that bot Winter and Summerlicious still exists!

We have people on the “I’m a foodie and I’m too good for their prix-fixe menu” camp and the “This is a great opportunity to try out food at this restaurant”. I have been on both sides of the camp and I know the arguments for both. So my message to foodies – get over it. It’s a fun event and gives people an excuse to hang out with each other. Calm down.

Anyway, my friends and I decided to hit up America at the Trump Hotel. You can find their Winterlicious menu here.

So yesterday, I actually forgot my camera and only had my iPhone 5S with me. And you know how restaurants get really dark. I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to take good photos of the food so I called ahead and the manager said she would try and accommodate me. The pictures below are taken by the manager at America, Serena, who took photos of the food in the kitchen with my phone. (you know, I don’t want to be that obnoxious blogger with flash at a restaurant)

As I type this, I’m trying to call MoRoCo to help a sister out but I’ve been on hold for 17 minutes now so they must be insanely busy at 4:30PM….

Just note: For those who are wondering, Stock was renamed to America. And Suit was renamed to Calvin Bar.

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My company has done several events at the Trump Hotel before and I didn’t really love their Art deco furnishing outside but it’s slowly growing on me. But inside America was much more hip.

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For my app, I decided to go with Pressed BBQ Pork, apple mustard, chow chow pickles, tasso ham crackling. It was pretty good. It’s like a cold pulled pork sandwich without the bread. There was also this questionable white powder which I found out was bacon powder.

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My main was Wellington County Steak & Cheek (local), heirloom grits, collard green choucroute, smoked bourbon butter. This was my first steak in over 2 years. The last steak I had was in May 2012 in a restaurant called Cau in Amsterdam. The steak was OK – nothing special. The cheek was too … meaty for me so I apologize about that. (I’m still not 100% on the YAY MEAT IS GREAT train) However, it seems my friends reallly enjoyed the tenderness of the cheek. However, her only comment was that she did not like having to go through the corn nuts to get to her meat. Lol.

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Finally for dessert, I had Granny Apple Sticky Pudding (vegetarian/local), sourdough & maker’s mark bourbon pudding, pecan toffee sauce, pretzel ice cream which is NOT the image above. It was so flippin’ delicious. It wasn’t too sweet nor was it sour at all!! The dessert pictured above is the Peanut Butter Panna Cotta, toasted marshmallow, allspice peanut brittle which my friend got. As much as I dislike peanut butter…I have to admit, this was pretty amazing too!! It was like a PB flavoured whipped cream?!

I would definitely go there again outside of the Winterlicious promo because not only was the food good, America turns into a lounge afterwards with dancers and a DJ.

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America Restaurant
Website: americarestaurant.ca
325 Bay St. 31st floor, Toronto, ON M5H 3C2
416.637.5550