Television Producer & Photojournalist with a passion for sharing adventures in and around Melbourne, Australia. See my www.youtube.com/user/tmztvaustralia for other adventures. Subscribe to me so I can tell you of upcoming fab things not to miss.
Published September 27th 2015
High Tea at Impala and Peacock Brunswick
The art of making tea has evolved over the centuries in many forms with probably the most elaborate being the Japanese formal tea process called chaji. This tea ceremony was heavily influenced by Zen Buddhism and is meant to display respect to the person you are making tea for and the highest levels of etiquette. A chaji tea ceremony can last up to 4 hours. The less formal Japanese tea event, the chakai, includes simple hospitably, possibly a light meal and thin tea.
Teas never looked and smelled so delicious Impala & Peacock Brunswick
Of course as tea spread across the world, different cultures created their own style of tea events. When tea finally made it across the sea to England it was only affordable for the royal family and rich upper class. It was kept under lock and key by the mistress of the house and brought out for guests. The servants were only allowed to lay the table with the tea service and bring the hot water. Then the host brewed the tea for her attending friends. But "High Tea" was attributed to being established by Anna Russell, Duchess of Bedford, a close friend of Queen Victoria, in the 1940s. Social dinners became later and later in the evening, between 7 to 9 pm, so the Duchess instigated an afternoon tea of light sandwiches and cakes and refreshment, so her family did not go hungry prior to dinner, as lunch was normally at noon. She then started to invite friends to join her and it became an event for the ladies to get together and gossip, and visit about fashion, friends and family. Thus "High Tea" became an established social gathering and remains with us to day.
In the early 1900's, for convenience and our fast paced life, Tom Sullivan, of New York, invented "sewn" tea bags so he could ship his tea blends around the world. Now we can have a refreshing cuppa tea within just a few minutes. But that has not seen the death of "High Tea", especially if you visit the "Impala and Peacock Melbourne Tea Atelier" in Brunswick. Sara Dewitt, owner of this tea house, is a young and talented blender of organic tea and is fashioning tea events with a refreshing difference. And in this day and age of high use of pesticides, my family tends to strive to eat organic.
Select your fauvorite menu at Impala and Peacock
At this tea house, not only do you get to taste some extraordinary blends of teas that you might never have imagined, the cakes, biscuits and other tasty treats complement them beautifully. You can have a mixture of ribbon sandwiches, quiches, savory crepes, and then finish up with decadent sweet petit fours, fresh seasonal fruits, cheeses, and that's just the icing on the cake. The menu is extensive and delicious. Or you can indulge in an old fashioned Devonshire Tea with scones with jam. And you get to taste all those exceptional teas, not just a Cornish Cream Tea. Wine tasting now has a true revel as you can book a "Tea Tasting" and really immerse yourself in unique flavours.
Can you imagine a tea that seems to take you on an African Safari with its wonderful smells or a tea the tastes like a Turkish Delight. Well, I have had the joy of sampling them, so I can confirm they do. Plus they are beautiful to look at, smell divine and that's before you add hot water. Sarah recommends about 80% hot water and 20% cold to get the best aroma and taste.
Turkish Delight & Brunswick Breakfast to start your day.
What is even nicer, is the environment that Sara and her partner have created at their tea house, it is light, airy, warm and welcoming. You enjoy your tea in stunning vintage wear. This tea house recreates the old "High Tea" and brings it fresh and new to Melbourne.
And Sarah will help you style that special "social event", just like the Duchess of Bedford, at Impala and Peacock for birthdays, anniversaries, wedding or baby showers, or art exhibition launches. Just find any excuse or spontaneously pop over with friends; you will be so glad you did. It is a must on the Bucket List.
And you can buy tea to take away, and tea gadgets. When you have found your favourite blend, or blends, I have found it hard to not keep sampling new teas, then just order online for delivery to your home.
Invigorate, Immunity, Detox or Pregnancy teas for health
I feel the teas blends, designed by Sarah, that are the best, are the ones that give me health benefits such as building Immunity, Relaxation after a stressful day to help me sleep, or a bit of Detox. And if I have a crazy busy day scheduled, Invigorate always holds me for the day.
Relaxation Tea looks and smells as yummy as it tastes
And once you have fallen for the ambience at the tea shop, you might want to take up their offer to rent the facility for your own events. Sarah calls it, "just the space". Sarah had really created a incredibly special tea house at "Impala and Peacock" and worth a trip to or across the city.