High Tea at the “Nellie”

10 Aug

The Mount Nelson Hotel

Entrance, Mount Nelson

We went to high tea at the Mount Nelson hotel, the oldest hotel in Cape Town.  The hotel sits below Table Mountain on a spectacular piece of land right in the city.

The hotel reminded Dana and me of The Biltmore in Santa Barbara where our son Darin and his wife Lara were married.

It was a national holiday, National Woman’s Day, and there were a number of tables filled by women friends celebrating the day.

High Tea delicacies

The presentation of the tea was formal with thirty varieties from which to choose. Our waiter who was one of those excellent service professionals helped us with our choices. Dana had an orange tea infused with spices and I had a green tea that was specially dried over a bamboo fire. Both were excellent.

The tiered server in the center of the table held cucumber, egg and salmon finger sandwiches, scones (with clotted cream). plain croissants, chocolate croissants, jelly stuffed powdered donuts, tiny quiches, herb muffins, sweet rolls,  apple tort cake and dark chocolate cake with butter cream icing .

Flowers next to our table

The table was set on the back terrace of the hotel surrounded by gardens.  Palm trees and roses abound.

Terrace, Mount Nelson

We spent almost three hours at tea trying a number of different varieties. I tried one called “Gunpowder” because the tea leaves are rolled into little balls like shot when they are roasted.

Thirty plus kinds of tea

The sun was shining, the palms were sparkling as we sat enjoying the decadent repast on the terrace in the middle of the South African winter.

Beautiful winter day

9 Responses to “High Tea at the “Nellie””

  1. Lori McGirl August 22, 2012 at 10:22 pm #

    Good pictures of you and Dana. I know it’s real, but when I think of your adventures I say can they really be in South Africa and previously in Sicily. You enjoy your “High Teas”.

    I can see from Dana standing in the street why mirrors are held together with duct tape.

    I ca Hugs, Lori

    • Jill August 22, 2012 at 11:57 pm #

      Hi Lori, Sometimes it seems unbelievable to us that we’re here having these adventures. What a great life!

  2. californian August 11, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

    Beautiful pictures. That’s quite a lot of items on the table. I’m guessing Dana consumed the a whole pot tea per his usual morning. =)

    • Jill August 11, 2012 at 8:11 pm #

      The photos were taken on our new camera….the pot of tea was consumed and more!

  3. Maryl August 10, 2012 at 10:34 pm #

    Whoa, Nellie! That’s some repast. I just threw out some clotted cream that had been in my fridge too long.
    It is interesting when you travel to see and taste the subtle and not-so-subtle differences in cuisine. And, what a treat to sit in such a beautiful venue soaking up the winter sun in such a historical setting.
    I think I’m going to go and have a cup of Rooibo tea, as we speak! I just googled it and found out that it is from South Africa. I have been drinking it for awhile. Probably not as exotic as “gunpowder”, however.

    • Jill August 11, 2012 at 8:28 am #

      Reibos tea is named for the plants that grow here in the Cape. That is what we went hiking through on the way to Muizenburg Peak. The translation is “fine bush”. Enjoy your piece of South Africa.

  4. Ursula Freer August 10, 2012 at 5:48 pm #

    Looks like you’re having a great time. I know what you mean about the gunpowder tea! Jasmine is the one!

    A question for Dana: where did we get the free worms for the community compost pile?

  5. Nancy Lehrhaupt August 10, 2012 at 4:26 pm #

    What, no twinkies? The great American delicacy? It looks very traditional and Jill you look great! Enjoy that clotted cream!

    • Jill August 10, 2012 at 5:14 pm #

      Twinkies must be for “low” tea. The clotted cream was wonderful. I put it on everything. Today I had a tiny chocolate bar with my mochachino. I am living the life, I’ll tell you.

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