In May 2017 we visited this cute little tearoom on the Big Island of Hawaii called Tea-licious Cafe. Even though, it was fairly new (3 months in), we decided to check it out and see what it had to offer.
Upon making our reservations, we were immediately required to pay for half of the bill for the entire afternoon tea party. I understand how this can be a great strategy for a business; however, it was not so great for us as now we had to make sure the entire party would arrived.
The pâtisserie area was nicely set up, so I had high hopes. Unfortunately, once I looked to the right from the entrance, I saw the afternoon tea area and my standards for this tearoom had dropped. Some of the let downs for the vacinity were: 1. There were different table sets, with each one having a different theme, 2. The back wall looked like storage and 3. It was extremely small and tight.
They presented us with a beet salad as the first course of the meal, which ended up being quite refreshing. The second course consisted of four different sandwiches: 1. a pesto and tomato croissant, 2. a cucumber sandwich, 3. a slice of an apple and brie over a piece of a baguette drizzled with honey, and 4. salami over white American cheese on a slice of a baguette garnished with a pickle. Sadly, the sandwiches reminded me of high tea as they were nowhere near being dainty at all. The third course was a cranberry scone, while the forth course included a macaroon, a fruit tart and a slice of a mango Swiss roll. I was a little bummed on the scone as it should be the shiny star of afternoon tea, and I am never impressed with macaroons for this type of affair. The mango Swiss roll was a Hawaiian twist that I greatly appreciated, but at the same time it’s all about the portions, and once again it was a little heartier than usual.
Unfortunately, it did not stop there. Not only were we presented with a two tiered stand, but we were given a tea press rather than a traditional teapot. The cucumber sandwiches still had parts of the crust on them, and the presentation of the sandwiches were sloppy, to say the least. The scones were not memorable and rather than serving clotted cream, we were given butter – which is a faux pas in my opinion.
Conversely, the service was great, and the menu changes frequently. This makes it interesting as it can draw customers back to the business. However, the highlight of this experience was simply being able to smell the variety of teas they had in stock before making my decision.