Showing posts with label Spa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spa. Show all posts

Ste. Anne’s Spa for afternoon tea (Grafton)


After a day of pampering at Ste. Anne’s, what better way is there to end the day (assuming you’re not staying overnight) than indulging in afternoon tea with your guests? An extra meal squeezed in between lunch and dinner; time to sit back and sip tea while going over the highlights. 

Given we already had a hefty lunch, we didn’t think we could get through all the tiers, but somehow we managed. Who knew an hour hike around the property would spur up such an appetite? 

Their tea selection consists of a page of options. The English Breakfast, which I had during lunch, was nice and strong and gave me the caffeine jolt I needed. But, for afternoon tea, it seemed better to stick with something light and mellow, the green tea was the ideal option. 

The traditional tiered plate arrived to share and contained enough food to leave us satisfied (and not requiring dinner that evening) but still in small bites so we could get through trying everything.

Within the top tier was a tamari glazed steamed carrot bun, which almost tastes like Chinese BBQ pork buns except stuffed with squash and has a sweet and silky texture. This was very tasty. So was the tourtière topped with savoury caramelized onion jam … two bites of goodness. Only the cream cheese and cucumber sandwich, a staple of the afternoon tea, was forgettable – possibly because everything else was so good.  


In the middle, a tier of cheese (havarti and gouda?) with crostini, crudites, and grapes. It’s an interesting addition and nicely transitions the savoury bites to sweet.


But, the one thing that makes afternoon tea are the scones. At Ste. Anne’s, theirs are filled with raisins (something I could do without). Yet, in the spirit of tea, once I slathered enough Devonshire cream and jam onto it, it was fine. Interestingly, Ste. Anne’s also offers two Devonshire creams with two levels of sweetness.


What surprised me the most was the final sweet tier and how enjoyable they were. These are generally the items I’ll take a bite of and put down, at most finish one– at Ste. Anne’s, I indulged in everything: 

  • Macarons can sometimes be too brittle or sweet, but at Ste. Anne's it was like eating an airy biscuit that envelopes your mouth in an almond flavour that thankfully didn't resemble fake extract. 
  • Meanwhile, the sesame butter cookie was deliciously nutty and chewy. Oh, how I wanted more!Alas, by the time we made our way to Ste. Anne's bakery down the road, I was met with disappointment. 
  • Lastly, and most surprisingly, the walnut cocoa truffle, which was creamy and incorporates a rich cocoa taste without the overpowering sugary blast – all truffles should taste like this.
Given Ste. Anne’s is a spa, afternoon tea was served in a bright sunny room very casually. You don’t need to wear a hat and heels (in fact, robes are not only allowed, but encouraged) and feel free to laugh and be noisy. After all, the day trip is all about relaxing and recharging. Oh, and of course, refueling at the end of the day.

Overall mark - 7 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Grafton, Canada
 Address: 1009 Massey Rd

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


Is That It? I Want More!

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Ste. Anne’s Spa for lunch (Grafton)


It’s remarkable how you can build up an appetite at Ste. Anne’s Spa. Especially since all I did that morning was relax in the hot tub, take a short stroll in the gardens, clear my pores in the eucalyptus steam room, and soothed the kinks in my back in the massage chair. Yet, somehow, I was ravenous by noon.


I’ll admit, there was some apprehension... hearing their menu was delicious but healthy, I braced myself for quinoa salads and broiled fish. Luckily, while they do have options that are lighter, they also offer some hearty dishes as well. In general, they just give you a lot of choice; so much so that I couldn’t choose between the beef tataki salad and the potato and scallion cakes to start. As a testament to their hospitality, our waitress brought both.

The beef tataki salad was filled with crunchy fresh vegetables - radish slices, edamame, spring peas, and crunchy smashed cucumbers – so the lightly seared beef slices, while present, weren’t the star of the dish. All the ingredients were nicely tied together dressed in a delicious ginger vinaigrette with tamari glaze drizzled on the plate for an extra savoury element.


Meanwhile, the potato & scallion cakes were a letdown. The crispy French style crepes were in reality savoury pancakes, which tasted like they were made from Aunt Jemima mix with scallions thrown in. Having pictured the starter to be similar to latkes or rosti, it was very disappointing that the potatoes seemed missing from the equation. At least the tangy relish accompanying the pancakes were delicious and gave them some flavour.


It was probably for the best that I didn’t finish the pancakes anyways - the Ste. Anne’s beef burger was a towering creation that demanded an appetite! The thick patty was cooked through but still juicy and dressed with aged cheddar and the customary fresh toppings. I could hardly squish the fluffy brioche Kaiser down to fit in my mouth. Overall, a very tasty burger and the horseradish chive aioli a lovely condiment in lieu of sugary ketchup.


Despite it being a hearty burger, I can see why people describe Ste. Anne’s food as “healthy”. Firstly, the burger doesn’t come with fries, in fact there’s nothing fried on the menu. Instead, side options consists of soup or salad and even the Caesar dressing is light and vinaigrette based.

Any menu item with “Ste. Anne” in the name is worth trying as there’s something special about the dish. The Ste. Anne burger gets its moniker given they raise the cattle – something I realized after lunch. Wandering their property, to make my ways to the stables, I saw the herd grazing on grass and making their way down from the rolling hills towards the water fountain. Looking into their large eyes, as they lapped up the water, made me instantly feel guilty about how much I loved the burger.

The butter tart is also called the “Ste. Anne” butter tart and is created on site at their bakery. It was my kind of desseert: a thin crispy crust filled with a gooey filling that’s sweet, but not in a teeth hurting manner. In lieu of brown sugar they use a flavourful maple syrup, which gives it an added depth. 


If you like these, you can head to the bakery to buy ones to take home – but go early as they were less than a dozen plain ones left when we visited at 5pm. And what a shame it’d be if you didn’t have something to bring home to love ones. It’s the least they’d expect after a day of relaxation. 

Overall mark - 8 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Grafton, Canada
 Address: 1009 Massey Rd

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this: