Looking to have "Afternoon Tea" in Victoria, following are places to go in my preferential order:
1) The Blethering Place (this is the most traditional British restaurant)
2) Point Ellice House (a neat historic site that serves tea (the largest serving of goodies out of all of them) in the garden during summer months)
3) Gatsby Mansion (good)
4) The Empress (overpriced but decadent)
5) White Heather Tea Room (overpriced, small servings, lacks ambience)
5) James Bay Tea Room (almost tacky; small servings; beautiful exterior)
Places I haven't tried:
Butchart Gardens Afternoon Tea
Abkahazi Gardens Tea Room
THE place to go for afternoon tea
Conquered by the Victorian spirit of the capital of British Columbia, my friend Catherine wanted to have afternoon tea. I, however, wasn't about to pay the $49.95 the Empress Hotel charged for tea and cucumber sandwiches so I leafed through my city guide and saw that it was possible to have afternoon tea at the Gatsby Mansion for half the price ($24.95 per person). Being a fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald, I was immediately taken in by the name of the place so we made our way around Inner Harbour to the Gatsby Mansion Restaurant.
I have to admit that service, without being bad, wasn't all that great. When we came in they stared at us seemingly wondering what we were doing there until we told them we would like to have tea. But our table, which offered a great view of the mansion's gardens, and most importantly the food, quickly made us forget about the below-average service. The traditional English afternoon tea included a plate of fresh fruit, melt-in-your-mouth scones with cream and jam, four sandwiches (curry chicken, country ham, cucumber and cream cheese, and smoked salmon rolls) and four treats (a french horn, a chocolate mousse with whipped cream, a carrot cake and a chocolate macaroon cake). Needless to say, neither of us were able to eat it all but we did enjoy watching the rain fall down while slowly finishing our cup of tea. Jane Austen would have been so proud of us! The scones were pretty memorable!
Gatsby Mansion Inn and Restaurant in Victoria, BC