A person can never indulge in too many afternoon teas and I had the pleasure of partaking in two afternoon tea sessions just last week. I have not been back to Mandarin Oriental since my last visit in 2016. Coincidentally, the previous visit was soon after I had given birth to Edward, and now Charlotte is already 5 months old. I am late!
The bar has also changed somewhat. Previously it used to be called the Axis Bar and Lounge, and now it is known as the MO Bar. I believe the change happened some time in 2018. Some things have changed for the better. The quality of the afternoon tea is much better now overall, but alas, the pricing has correspondingly increased. The afternoon tea used to cost $42 back in 2016, and now it is $52 per guest or $98 for 2 guests on weekdays. There is a 15% discount though, if you pay with selected credit cards or if you sign up for their free Mandarin Oriental Dining Society membership card (discount not stackable). They used to offer a choice of two drinks, and now it is only one. Choose wisely!
After partaking in so many afternoon teas in Singapore, as with most things in life, you get what you pay for. The afternoon tea at Mandarin Oriental may be more expensive, but it is also of a better quality. All the items offered were pretty delicious. Special mention must be given to the chocolate scone, which is probably the best and most chocolaty scone I have eaten at an afternoon tea. In fact one seldom comes across chocolate scones at hotel afternoon teas. You can get them easily enough at bakeries, but not in hotels for some reason. At least that has been my experience thus far.
No morsel gave the impression of dubious origin. By that, I mean all the items tasted good enough that I did not wonder if it was bought from the local bakery. I jest not, because I have come across other afternoon tea places, where I wondered if the tarts or pastry puffs were procured from bakeries which price them at $2 or thereabouts. Let’s not name names but I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.
- Blood Orange & Rosemary Granite
- Deviled Quail Egg on Brioche with Flying Fish Roe
- Green Pea Flan with Charcoal Crisp and Rainbow Trout
- Romesco Toast with Scallop Mousseline and Basil
I love it whenever there is a “welcome drink / icy cold treat” offered upon arrival. Always a special touch, and yes, it does make you feel welcomed! A number of hotels have cottoned on to this and are offering this now.
- Black Forest Ham on Multigrain with Red Cheddar
- Boston Lobster on Brioche with Creme Fraiche
- Cajun Marinated Chicken Wrap with Pico de Gallo and Sour Cream
- Lamb in Phyllo with Pine Nuts and Yoghurt Raita
I liked most of the savoury items. The chicken wrap was unfortunately quite tasteless though, while the phyllo pastry was stiff and dry.
- Avocado – Avocado Mousse, Almond Chestnut Sponge, Chestnut Cream with Dark Rum
- Golden Eggs – Hummingbird Cake, Coconut Pineapple Mousse, Exotic Coulis
- Cocoa Bean – Chocolate Pound Cake, Raspberry marmalade, Raspberry Custard
- Oolong Tea – Oolong Tea Mousse, Peach Vanilla Infusion, Crunchy Choux
- Kumquat Carrot – Mandarin Mousse, Kumquat Compote, Carrot Cake
Instagrammable desserts that are actually tasty too! Kudos to the chef’s creativity. These were indeed very eye catching and it was quite interesting to see how each one would actually taste like. Not your average predictable chocolate sponge cake there.
- Chocolate Scone
- Madagascar Vanilla Scone
Like I mentioned above, the scones were very good, and in particular the chocolate scone. I love how it has been generously studded with chocolate chips! Both went so well with the clotted cream and jam. And as I always say, more clotted cream is more. I asked for a second serving to really jazz up my scone!
If you visit on Easter Weekend (16 and 17 April), the Chocolate Scone will be swapped for a Parmesan Cheese and Salted Egg Yolk scone. Now does that sound interesting or what? Cheese scones are common enough, but how often do you come across a salted egg yolk scone?
One of the negative points about Mandarin Oriental’s afternoon tea is that they only offer the choice of one drink, which seems quite ungenerous. Most hotels offer at least 2 drinks, and some even have unlimited drinks. To make the most of my precious choice, I went for an iced coffee. I didn’t want to squander my choice on a pot of tea which will grow cold well before the end of the afternoon tea session, and which I can easily brew at home using a teabag. And also because it was a sweltering day.
Check out other reviews of Afternoon Tea places in Singapore
- Shangri-La Rose Veranda
- Ritz Carlton Afternoon Tea
- Fullerton Hotel The Courtyard
- Sofitel Singapore City Centre 1864 Lobby Bar
- Conrad Centennial Lobby Bar
- Swissotel Merchant Court Lobby Bar
- PARKROYAL on Pickering Lime Restaurant
Mandarin Oriental MO Bar Afternoon Tea
5 Raffles Ave, Singapore 039797
Tel: 6885 3500
$52 per guest (everyday) or $98 per 2 guests (on weekdays only)
3-5pm (Monday – Friday) | 12.30-2.30pm ; 3-5pm (Saturday & Sunday)