We check out a new Dempsey Hill twist on the traditional high tea that’s heavy on fresh herbs and veggies, and light on stuffiness…
In the mood for a buffet or a satisfying afternoon snack, but not feeling the typical CBD hotel vibe, mama? Head to the amazing new “Hi-Tea” at House on Dempsey Hill for a slightly zany but totally delicious spread. And did we mention kids under 6 eat free?
A twist on their former “vintage” high tea, this new rendition – available on Thursday and Friday afternoons only – aims to combine House’s popular comfort food style (OMG have you tried the truffle fries?) with fresh herbs and veggies harvested in collaboration with Edible Gardens.
The food was bright and inventive, with a lovely, relaxed ambience far more befitting of the lush garden surroundings than a more traditionally sutffy high tea. Split into three stations (Savoury, Sweet, and Sandwich), the buffet offers 20 different nibbles from a rotating slate of 30 menu items.
I started off with some of the super fresh veggies, including little skewers of plucky little red tomatoes, hearts of palm, cucumbers and fresh basil. I also quite enjoyed the selection of “mini pizzas”, which were more like inventively decorated pappadums topped with squid ink and mushrooms. It was light and bite-sized, yet still packed quite the flavour punch. I would have been remiss to not try the totally delectable salmon cream cheese roll — House’s spin on a high tea classic topped with a drizzle of basil-infused truffle honey. Delish!
Next it was on to the “Sandwich” station, where you can pick out fillings and have them grilled to order in a toasty oven. Among the options were chicken, roast beef and grilled veggies. I really appreciated not only that the meats and veggies on offer were quite fresh, but also that the sandwiches were made to order — that can actually be quite hard to come by here!
Before I move on to the desserts (and oh boy, are they worth the wait!) I should also mention the wide variety of salad options. Besides the aformentioned fresh greens courtesy of Edible Gardens, House also supplies an array of beautiful salad dressings, in varieties like Marjoram, Honey Lemon and Herbed Olive Oil.
Another highlight was the Phad Thai Salad with Thai basil, coriander (straight from House’s own garden!) and spring onion (far lighter than the noodles version!), which I found paired nicely with a spot of Sweet Potato Leaf Fried Rice (I bet that’s not one you’ve seen on a high tea menu before, mama!).
But oooh, the desserts! The fresh herb theme continued with items like Curry Leaf Almond Brownie and Avocado Chocolate Cake (impossibly moist, and less cloyingly sweet than most chocolate cakes. I seriously had to restrain myself from going back for thirds).
Other sweet highlights for me were the Double Chocolate Chili Cupcake and the Lemon Balm Loaf Cake. Once again, both were packed with flavour, but their inventive herbal ingredients provided a surprising zing that also kept them from being overly sweet.
Of course there was also a wide variety of fresh fruit tarts on offer, along with some delightful vanilla charcoal scones served with Raspberry and thyme jam and herb butter. To round it all off, you’ve got a choice of four brilliant herbal concoctions, including Homemade Ginger Tea (a closely guarded secret recipe deployed across the Spa Esprit Group), “Vanilla Sky” (Jasmine Tea and Vanilla), Ginger and Peppermint, and “Hip Hop Chai” (Vanilla and Cloves black tea). Every option is simply sublime.
That’s really just the tip of the dining iceberg, mama, but suffice to say I left sated and happy. Best of all, House Hi-Tea is fantastic value at $30+ per person, particularly when you’re making multiple return trips to the buffet (and believe me, you will).
House Hi-Tea is available from 3pm – 5.30pm on Thursdays and Fridays. It’s priced at $30++ (per Adult), $15++(kids 6-12), and children under the age of 6 dine for free.
House, 8D Dempsey Rd, Singapore 249672, Tel: (+65) 6475 7787