“There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.”

Henry James, The Portrait of a Lady

There is no better way to start and end your day than with a cup of tea, or with a glass of bubbly!

With delicious sweet and savoury snacks at your fingertips, there’s no better way to spend an afternoon that at one of Cape Town‘s incredibly high teas.

What is High Tea?

Also known as ‘afternoon tea’, the ritual of High Tea began as a popular social event for the upper classes back in the 1800s. Allegedly, at the time, it was customary to only eat two meals a day; breakfast and late dinner. Herem  High Tea became a bridge between meals.

English High Tea has a long rich history stretching back to the tale of the seventh Duchess of Bedford, Anna Maria Stanhope, who was said to settle her cravings with a pot of tea and something to nibble on. Soon enough, all of the ladies were indulging in this pastime and now it has become a popular activity amongst diners to enjoy a leisurely cup of tea with delightful nibbles to dine on.

Thankfully, the tradition remains as popular as ever, with plenty of trendy hotels and restaurants offering their unique spin on this delicious mid-day ritual. Locals and travellers can enjoy a delectable afternoon tea experience at one of Cape Town’s popular High Tea destinations.

1. Afternoon Tea at the Belmond Mount Nelson

An idyllic setting in an oasis of elegance with striking views of Table Mountain, afternoon tea at the Belmond Mount Nelson is served in the Grand Tea Lounge that leads onto the hotel’s magnificently manicured garden.

The epitome of grace and opulence, Afternoon Tea at the Belmond Mount Nelson boasts a selection of over 40 of the finest teas offered with a marvellous buffet selection of South African inspired sweet and savoury treats. On request, the resident tea sommelier will guide guests through traditional tea ceremonies and interesting tea tastings.

Cost:

  • Morning Tea: R285.00 (adults), R205.00 (children, 4-11 years)
  • Afternoon Tea: R365.00 (adults), R205.00 (children, 4-11 years)
  • Evening Tea: R365.00 (adults), R205.00 (children, 4-11 years)

Times: Monday to Sunday 1.30 PM – 3.30 PM and 3:30 PM – 5.30 PM

More information here.

2. Tea by the Sea at The Twelve Apostles

Quirkily called “Tea by the Sea”, this afternoon high tea comes with stunning views of Cape Town’s mountain landscapes and a refreshing ocean breeze. Afternoon tea is held on the Leopard Bar which overlooks the vast Atlantic ocean and offers views of the Mother City’s captivating horizon.

Professional pastry chef Gina Marziani flaunts her skills with layers of divine treats including, finger sandwiches, soft cheesy scones, decadent chocolate cheesecake, colourful macarons and of course, a wide selection of deliciously flavoured teas. Catering to those with dietary restrictions, The Twelve Apostles also offers a Vegan High Tea for dairy-free guests.

The Leopard Bar is pet-friendly, so small to medium-sized pooches are welcome to come along and enjoy the pet-friendly menu.

Cost:

  • High Tea by the Sea: R325.00 per person
  • Vegan High Tea: R37.00 per person (excludes bubbly)

Times: Monday to Sunday 10 AM – 4 PM

More information here.





3. Classic High Tea at The Cellars-Hohenort

The Classic High Tea at the Cellars-Hohenort is a delightfully indulgent daytime activity with plenty to nibble on. Located in the lusciously leafy Constantia Valley, afternoon tea is either served on the sunny terrace overlooking the beautiful garden or in the airy, light-filled tea room.

With much to offer, some of the favourite sweet and savoury treats including the roasted vegetable and goat’s cheese tart, the dark Madagascan chocolate cake and the fresh fruit pavlova. There is also an array of classic and herbal teas on offer, including iced-teas, hot chocolates or a glass of bubbly.

Cost: The Classic High Tea: R245.00 per person

Times:

  • The Classic High Tea: Monday to Sunday, 3 PM – 5 PM
  • A la Carte Tea: Monday to Sunday, 11 AM – 5 PM

More information here.

4. Royal Tea at The Silo Hotel

The buzzing Silo District is not only home to the famous Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art but also houses the eclectic Silo Hotel. Here, the ultra-stylish Granary Cafe hosts a daily Royal Tea.

Created by pastry chef Devin Jones, this modern twist on a traditional High Tea, arrives on a massive three-tiered cylinder containing sweet and savoury treats crafted to perfection. Picture cucumber and mint finger sandwiches, fresh buttermilk scones and some of the best macarons in town. Enjoy tea, coffee or a glass of bubbly with your incredible buffet.

The Granary Cafe also offers an Afternoon Tea at a lower cost with fewer nibbles. Special-occasion requests and dietary requirements can easily be catered for as long as 48 hours notice is given.

Cost:

  • Royal Tea: R275.00
  • Afternoon Tea: R185.00

Times: Monday to Sunday 2 PM – 4 PM

More information here.

5. Morning Tea at The One & Only Cape Town

Hosted at one of the cities top bars, the Vista Bar and Lounge at the One & Only Cape Town, Morning Tea at the One & Only is served with a wondrous view of Table Mountain, accompanied by soothing sounds of a live saxophone.

The buffet style high tea is an indulgent affair, featuring a wide selection of platters bearing freshly baked scones, biscuits, finger sandwiches, eclairs, cupcakes, macarons, koeksisters, cocktail buns, tartlets and of course a wide selection of teas and freshly brewed coffee.

Cost:

  • Weekend Morning Tea: R225.00 (buffet)
  • Weekend Afternoon Tea: R325.00 (buffet)
  • Weekday Morning Tea: R195.00 (tiered stand)
  • Weekday Afternoon Tea: R295.00 (tiered stand)
  • Themed Afternoon Tea: R325.00
  • Children (4 – 12 years): half price

Times:

  • Morning Tea: Monday to Sunday 9 AM – 12 PM
  • Afternoon Tea: Monday to Sunday 2.30 pm – 5.30 PM

More information here.

6. The Cape Grace Hotel Traditional Afternoon Tea

Situated in the popular V & A Waterfront, the Cape Grace Hotel is a wonderful hotel that mix of traditional Cape culture with modern luxury. The regal atmosphere of the private library is the perfect destination for a relaxing High Tea experience.

Indulge in an array of dainty treats, including cream cheese and cucumber finger sandwiches, sweet scones with lemon curd and strawberry jam and scrumptious macarons. There is a great selection of black, green or herbal teas, as well as fragrant coffees and delicious glasses of bubbly! Loose-leaf teas are served in clear teapots and presented with an elegant hourglass timer, allowing you to steep your tea to perfection.

Cost: Full Afternoon Tea: R225.00 per person

Times: Monday to Sunday 12 PM – 6 PM  

More information here.

7. Gin High Tea at Ginja

Putting a fun twist on the traditional High Tea, Ginga restaurant, located at the V&A Waterfront Pierhead, adds gin cocktails to their High Tea menu.

Just a stone’s throw away from the water, the restaurant boasts stunning views of Table Mountain. The High Tea is a buffet of delicate sweet and savoury treats, with filter coffee and a large selection of herbal teas on offer.

Various Gins are on offer at a separate table, allowing you to build your own gin-based cocktail using different ingredients. Use different garnishes, fruits, herbs and flavours to create your own unique Gin cocktail!    

Cost: R185.00 per person (Inverroche Gin charged separately)

Time: The first Saturday of every month at 3 PM.

More information here.

We want to hear from you!

What are your favourite high teas in Cape Town? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below! Thanks for reading!

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