Thursday, November 18, 2010

Adonia - nice ambiance, but lack in service


Adonia Tea House
2057 W 41st Ave, Vancouver (Map)

Adonia Tea House on Urbanspoon

Food: 3.5
Service: 2.5
Price: Fair

Afternoon tea is one of my favorite activities. So far I have been to 3 of them. I think Fish House in Stanley Park and Fleuri in Sutton Place Hotel are both very good for the price you pay, but sadly Provence Marinaside was a total disappointment in terms of food. I remember back during the summer Groupon had a 2 for 1 Fairmont afternoon tea deal, but I missed it. So when I saw another one pop up on IndugeLiving, I immediately purchased it.

This one was for Adonia Tea House in Kerrisdale. The regular price for one person is $25, but this deal was for only $24 for 2 people. Although the deal was very good, but it was only valid from Monday to Friday. Anyways R and I arrived at 3:30pm in the afternoon, and the place was nearly packed. The quaint little tea shop was adorable, it certainly had that British flare with their antique furnitures and numerous fine china tea sets.
They serve a wide variety of loose leaf tea, which I chose Tiramisu. The flavor was smooth and rich, but sadly I couldn't detect much of the chocolate flavor mentioned in the description. R had the organic English Breakfast, which was really good for such a simple tea. Despite the fact the warmer was only a tea light candle, but it served its purpose, my tea was always warm. Most afternoon tea places provide honey, but here they provided us with raw rock sugar which I like.

I will start with the bottom layer: sandwiches. All of them are tasty, but the most surprising one for me was their cucumber/cream cheese sandwich. The sandwich was simple, yet very refreshing and delicious. Usually this sandwich would be soggy, but because both slices of bread was coated with cream cheese, so the bread remained relatively dry. The rest of the sandwiches were also very simple, but uses fresh ingredients and made with care.
The second layer consisted of a smoke salmon sandwich and 2 small phyllo tarts. The sandwich was okay, the bread was a bit dry. The 2 tarts were antipasto and spinach. Both were okay in terms of flavor, but not too impressive.
The top layer was filled with delicious looking desserts. Usually at afternoon tea, they would provide a set of desserts for each person, but here they just provide you with one of each, meaning you will have to share. The good is that there are more variety, the bad is the portion is small. Anyways, all the dessert seems to be home made. The chocolate walnut roll had tons of walnut, but the chocolate cake lacked in richness. The chestnut rolled looked average, but was surprisingly very good. I liked the fruit tart, the richness of the custard cream was nicely balanced out by the tartness of the fruit. Overall, the dessert were pretty good.

The scones came much later than the rest of the food. It was nice and warm, maybe because it's freshly baked (not too sure). We were given 2: one cheese and one cranberry (I forgot to take a picture of the cheese one :P). Anyways, these scones were delicious. The cheese scone was buttery and soft, and very rich. The cranberry scone had just the right amount of sweetness. To be honest, I think warm scones just taste so much better than cold ones. We were only provided with a rather watery strawberry jam, no Devonshire cream provided. However I did see it behind the counter, it's just we were never given any.

The food here was definitely good, but sadly the service wasn't too impressive. I mean it wasn't bad, but I was just expecting better. They were courteous, but not friendly. I mean they just didn't give off that warm vibe. They never once came by to check on us or fill our tea pot. Also, most of them barely smiled.

Although I did like the food/drink at Adonia, but I think service also plays a big part that enhances the experience. So the question is would I recommend this place. Well, I think this place is good for two reasons: 1. the ambiance was great and 2. the food was actually pretty tasty, but if you don't live in the area, I would suggest you start your afternoon tea experience else where, because there are better ones out there.


R November 18, 2010 at 11:25 AM

It's kinda cold and indifferent.

Maybe cuz using Groupon XD?...

The service truly has a large space to be improve.

TS of eatingclub vancouver November 18, 2010 at 6:46 PM

I missed that Fairmont deal too! Apparently, the afternoon tea there is really good.

re Adonia:
Hmm, I wonder if I would've noticed (re service). Maybe I'll give this place a try. We do live close by and all. But, if I do, I will definitely ask for the Devonshire cream! Or I'll just go serve myself; save them the effort. ;D

Jenny November 19, 2010 at 8:32 AM

R: yeah totally agree... but I would hope they don't treat their customer different just because we had a coupon,.

TS: haha I should have done the same.. just serve myself.. yeah I heard the same for Fairmont, and also Market too.. these are definitely on my list.

Anonymous November 23, 2010 at 2:46 PM


Spot on as usual. The cream cheese/cucumber sandwich was a favourite between both of us who went to Adonia through the Groupon coupon.

The warm scone was also excellent. Perhaps I'm not used to an afternoon tea, but I would have much preferred a cup of coffee instead.

I agree with the service, but the saddest part about it is that they actually do have a large enough staff... they just don't act pro-actively enough to serve the customers.

Another well done post Jenny =) Excellent work.

Jenny November 23, 2010 at 3:20 PM

Thanks Anon... appreciate the feedback. I totally agree, they had 4 staff on duty when we where there, given the size of the restaurant, you would think it's more than enough for some quality service.

DesignGirl November 25, 2010 at 6:32 PM

I missed the Fairmont deal too but I ended up going anyways...probably the worst decision ever since it was freakishly expensive.

Adonia doesn't seem like a bad place from the photos. I think I will have to give it a try!

Jenny November 26, 2010 at 1:13 PM

Their food was definitely good, but just don't expect too much in the service department.

Wow.. and I was expecting high end afternoon tea.. I guess it's not really worth the $70 price tag... but might be worth the $35 for today's SocialShopper deal.. I hope ;)

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