Much has been written about the afternoon tea at the Ritz Carlton. The concept of the British High Tea should not be new to all of us by now. A tradition of British aristrocrats (high society so to speak), it refers to tea time with a selection of bite-sized savoury and sweet items, the usual being classic buttery scones with clotted cream, jams as well as cucumber cream cheese or salmon sandwiches.
And of course, let’s not forget the tea.
After much written about coffee, I’m now interested to learn more about tea. I have had my fill of Boh teas, visitations of tea plantations in Cameron Highlands and of course, TWG teas. Frankly, these teas had never left an impressionable impact enough for me to want to learn more. My recent experience with tea mixologist Robert Dilmah at the World Gourmet Festival Bangkok altered my perception slightly.
And just a few weeks back, I took a sip of Ronnefeldt tea during my afternoon high tea session at the Ritz Carlton KL and it’s my favourite brand for teas now!
Ronnefeldt is a brand originating from Germany. As we know, Germany is not exactly a tea producing country and thus tea leaves for the Ronnefeldt brand are actually sourced from renowned growing areas in the world such as Sri Lanka and India.
The 4 selection of Ronnefeldt teas at the Ritz Carlton are Black Tea, Green Tea, Herbal and Fruit Teas.
Vincent, one of the bartendars at Lobby Lounge will gladly explain and assist your choice of tea during your visit. Take the opportunity to smell and explore each type of tea too if you are so inclined.
Myself and Karen was fascinated with some of the names of the teas. Irish Whisky, Royal Gunpower and Cape of Good Hope? The founder of Ronnefeldt sure did have a sense of humour!
To illustrate further on the special features of Ronnefeldt teas, Vincent showed us the contents within the tea boxes. Ronnefeldt teas are produced only by hand, which means no automated plucking methods but strictly through skilled human labour. The freshly plucked tea leaves are gently processed in all phases with the utmost of care and for the infused teas, the added fruits, flowers or herbs are in its dried but natural form.
For the example of below, the Lemon Grass infusion has actual dried lemongrass while the Pure Camomile consist of real, whole camomile flowers in the tea can itself.
The moment Vincent opened the can the waft of gorgeous uplifting smell of tea leaves and its infusion hit us. I have never inhaled such a strong but pleasant smell from a can of tea before! Other than from the cans, transparent vials of equivalent tea for you to sniff at before selecting.
We couldn’t resist the Irish Whisky Cream, though we were forewarned that there are no traces of alcohol inside whatsoever.
Well, our curiosity was more on how a non-alcoholic tea could taste like one, since the name hinted at being alcoholic. The description on the box says “A malty Assam autumn tea with whiskey and cocoa aroma“. Assam is an area in India that grows tea, if you are unaware.
While you can purchase excellent tea leaves, the process of brewing the tea also plays an important role for your perfect cup. For Ronnefeldt teas, guidelines for brewing is on the can itself (bottom).
Amount of tea per pot: 2 heaped teaspoon
Brewing time: 3-4 mins.
At the Ritz Carlton, your tea would be brewed at the optimal level of water which is 12 ounces per teapot and at the ideal temperature of 80C. Vincent advised that boiling hot water is not recommended as it would damage the delicate tea leaves.
The teapot sits on top of a metal canister with a candle inside. This candle will last for about an hour and will keep the tea warm as you slowly enjoy your afternoon tea.
The harp plays a melodious tune as we sat back, relaxed and chatted the afternoon away.
The bar serves other beverages as well if you wish for drinks other than tea.
I added an order of hot chocolate. I’m currently on the quest of seeking the best hot chocolate in town so I have been drinking hot chocolate almost everywhere. Anyone would like to recommend me a place?
For RM75++, your afternoon tea set comes with one pot of tea with unlimited refills. A full pot fills a tea cup thrice before you need to refill your pot. Other than the initial pot where the tea leaves are brewed for the first time, the subsequent brews requires about 2-3 minutes resting time before you should start to pour the tea out.
From experience, Vincent said a pot could be refilled up to 3 times while still retaining its full flavour.
Sip on your delightful chosen tea and munch on some pastries from the Ritz Carlton kitchen. A tea set at RM75++ feeds 2 easily.
The topmost tier of the set is for cakes and pastries, of which you are supposed to choose 4 from the dessert trolley.
Here’s my choice; chocolate mousse, pistachio madeleine (or was it financier?), cream puff and a white chocolate with dried fruits.
Other than the tea sets, the ala-carte menu is tempting too. I was almost tempted to order the Wagyu Burger. Yes, ‘almost tempted’ but never did cos the price was a hefty RM180++!
If you are a tea connoisseur, or simply a lover of teas, you can brew your own Ronnefeldt tea at home. Just head over to Carlton Gourmet and grab a pack.
Prices start at RM150++ per packet for the herbal infusion, black and fruit teas. For the green teas, it is RM250++ minimum per pack. The weight of each package differs according to the type of teas.
For an elegantly contemporary Afternoon Tea experience at The Lobby Lounge, Ground Level of The Ritz-Carlton, Kuala Lumpur please call 03-2142 8000 or email [email protected].
Available daily from 3.00pm until 5.00pm (except Sunday).
Afternoon Tea is priced at RM75++ per person.