Archive | December 2014

Andaz afternoon tea, Tokyo

It’s been ages since I last partook in afternoon tea in Tokyo.
On Sunday, I did a final one for the year – in Tokyo that is.
Although I’ve got a few international high teas on the itinerary.

I got around to checking out the newly-opened Andaz Hotel (part of the Hyatt group of hotels). The hotel is within the new Toranomon Hills building that only opened in June this year.

From Andaz afternoon tea

Andaz Hotel surpasses the Ritz Carlton Tokyo as the highest venue in Tokyo (and Japan for that matter) for high tea.
The Andaz Lounge is on level 51. It was a little tricky to get up there but finally did.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Once your eventually find the elevators for the hotel, the express lifts go from level 1 directly to level 51.

Window seats command excellent views over northern Tokyo including the Tokyo Skytree. Although I had requested window seats upon booking, priority is given to large groups (minimum of 4 people, although 6 is ideal). As a party of two, we were bumped out and seated at a regular table. The place was pretty busy with lots of afternoon tea-goers so reservations are recommended.

Afternoon tea is available at the Andaz Tavern from 2-6pm

From Andaz afternoon tea

The afternoon tea includes unlimited tea, although their range isn’t that big.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

You can get through quite a few teas, because a lot of teas are actually served by the cup and not by the pot.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Everything is very new and the decor quite nice – but typical of a skyrise hotel lobby lounge.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

First tea I had was puerh tea and my favourite of the day. Ended up ordering this about 3 times.

From Andaz afternoon tea

Tea is served by the cup and not by the pot.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Here are the afternoon tea stands:

From Andaz afternoon tea

Presentation was nice. But only two tiers, you say.
Fear not, the scones were served on a separate plate.

From Andaz afternoon tea

I like to go overboard on the photos. This will be no exception:

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Yummy deletable goodness:

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

The savoury goods are always my favourite.
And I’m always a sucker for quiche.

From Andaz afternoon tea

I do think the menu is a little bit lazy.
Using the same pastry pieces for the savoury and the sweet, granted that the dessert version has custard and creme inside them, but still. They just made lots of those eclair pastries – which weren’t even that great.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

I also ordered houji cha and that came served in a pot.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

And also ordered English breakfast tea which was rather disappointing – not served in a pot. Was brewed on the weaker side. Milk was served warm which was nice.

As for the scones – typical Japanese/American scones. More like dry biscuits. Oh how I miss Aussie scones.

From Andaz afternoon tea

Notice anything remiss about the scones?….

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

A distinct lack of strawberry jam is what is missing.
Blasphemous.

I had to ask for jam – specifcally, strawberry jam.
And they came back saying that they had no strawberry jam.
A hotel that does not stock jam is not a hotel in my book.

Instead they gave as an assortment of jams – none of which included strawberry. We got honey, orange jam, cherry jam and raspberry jam.

A little disappointing to say the least.

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Here is my scone with not strawberry jam:

From Andaz afternoon tea
From Andaz afternoon tea

Here is also a glimpse of the view not from our window seat:

From Andaz afternoon tea

The tavern/lounge by night, which by the way would make a very nice venue for cocktails.

From Andaz afternoon tea

A little on the pricer side at just under 5000yen (by the time you include the tax and service charge).
Wouldn’t say it was a value for money.
Pros – unlimited tea. Con – limited range of tea.
Great views, but only if you’re lucky to get a window seat (only bigger groups allowed window seats).
Food was ok. The menu was uninspired and no strawberry jam.
Still an overall pleasant experience, but money better spent elsewhere.
It’s a recommended venue if you want to say you’ve been the highest high tea in Japan.

The outside sculpture:

From Andaz afternoon tea
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