Above: Tea for two at the Peacock Alley at Waldorf Astoria Bangkok.
[Sponsored] There are several reasons one might want to wind down at the Peacock Alley at the Waldorf Astoria Bangkok. The name derives from the lobby-floor corridor of the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City, which opened in 1897, at Fifth Avenue and 34th Street where The Empire State Building now stands. The place was a prime gathering spot of the NYC upper crust – complete with all exquisite clothing and illuminating accessories – back in the day. ‘Meet me at the clock,’ one of them would have said. And at the clock, they made sure to look lavish and appropriately plumaged enough for the place.
But here in Bangkok, the airy Peacock Alley, completed with a centrepiece art-deco clock, is perched on the Waldorf Astoria Bangkok’s Upper Lobby. It boasts a sweeping view of inner Bangkok. This is a place to gather, sit and talk, and now their newly-launched Afternoon Tea makes all occasions even creamier and much more scrumptious.
Above: The summertime afternoon tea has been introduced along with the hotel’s newly-appointed executive pastry chef Andrea Noli, hailing from Milan, Italy. Chef Andrea says he draws inspirations from fresh Thai fruits.
Conceived and prepared by the Milan-born Executive Pastry Chef Andrea Noli, this afternoon tea – all savouries and sweets – employs the best of local Thai ingredients. Expect the pastries to be refreshingly mango-ey, coconut-ey and passion-fruity. The sweet items are rich, balanced and not too sweet. They reflect good quality ingredients and homemade-style down to the clotted cream, lemon curd and chunky strawberry jam.
Above: Savouries – from left – Bagel with salmon gravlax, dill and cream cheese, Fresh fig, creamy brie and balsamic pearls (v), Thai tung thong (crispy golden basket with vegetables (v), Tiger prawn caesar wrap, Waldorf salad with homemade smoked chicken and in the cones are Lobster salad.
For the savouries, all ‘sandwiches’ are either open-faced, wrapped or scooped into mini crusty cones. Thai ‘golden basket’ or ‘tung thong’ with their curry vegetable filling is also very tasty and vegetarian. My favourite is the open crusty sandwich of creamy brie, balsamic pearls and fresh fig. Again, vegetarian, a very bright and tasty combination. I also like the salmon gravlax on a soft bagel laden with cream cheese. 😀
Above: Pastries – clockwise from 6 hrs – lemon meringue tartlet, blueberry choux, coconut mousse, pineapple, lime cake (in that cute coconut shell), dark chocolate crunch fudge, New York cheesecake and strawberry glaze, and salted caramel macaroon.
Chef Andrea has obviously been taken by the Thai fruits. Coming from his last post in Indonesia, he found our local fruits very good in their fresh forms. He even imitates some of the natural looks. His bite-sized coconut mousse, pineapple and lime cake is encrusted in chocolate ‘coconut shell’ complete with its natural fibrous texture. Super cute! Also very lovely is the blueberry choux crowned with a blueberry-studded blueberry chantilly cream.
Above: Freshly baked scones – in plain and fruity variety (we got passion fruit) served with clotted cream, lemon curd, and homemade strawberry jam.
As for the scones, they are about half-a-palm size. Very delicate and tender, a bit flaky, but not falling-down-everywhere flaky. Just about right with the nice balance of sticking buttery dough. Each day, the kitchen bakes plain scones and one more alternative flavour, ranging from passion fruit (pictured), cinnamon and walnut, raspberry, chocolate and raisin. Also complimentary for the set is the rich and cheesy very delicious Japanese-style soft cakes (top picture, in the bowl left of the teapot). Two flavours rotate here as well. We got the chocolate cheese soft cake. Maybe when you are there, you might get the vanilla and candied orange.
The tea of choice is Mariage Frères in 15 selections from black, green to herbal. You can also choose from their gourmet coffees or cold beverages.
This Afternoon Tea at the Peacock Alley at the Waldorf Astoria Bangkok is served daily from 13.00 – 17.00 at Bt2,100++ for two. Or those into a bubbling tea can go for a Billecart – Salmon Champagne Afternoon Tea that includes 2 glasses of champagne at Bt3,800++ for two.
Peacock Alley – Upper Lobby, Waldorf Astoria Bangkok, T: (+66) 02 846 8888.