High Tea @ Intercontinental Melbourne | The Rialto

High Tea in Melbourne

Afternoon tea, cakes scones & pastries

The gracious old lady that is the city of Melbourne is renowned world-wide for its old world charm, salubrious architecture and yes, it's high tea.

Traditional afternoon tea (also called high tea) is served with freshly baked scones, jam and cream, pastries and finger sandwiches.

Some high tea's include a glass of bubbly but are all served with freshly brewed tea and coffee brought to your table throughout the service.

Also see: Melbourne's ~ High Tea Reviewed | Great Places for High Tea (article)

Featured High Tea

View Event: Afternoon Tea at the Windsor
Afternoon Tea at the Windsor
∞ Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Afternoon tea at The Hotel Windsor is a quintessential Melbourne experience, steeped in tradition. Held in the elegant One Eleven lounge, Afternoon Tea is served on traditional three-tiered silver stands with ribbon sandwiches, savoury pastries, ..

View Event: Buckingham High Tea
Buckingham High Tea
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 1st of January 2020
Afternoon Tea near Brighton in Bayside Grab your friends and family and book a high tea event with us Royal High Tea Kids High Tea Minimum of 10 pax Price on Application *Room hire applies for under 20 pax* Savouries Ribbon S ..

View Event: Flowerdale Estate High Tea
Flowerdale Estate High Tea
∞ Sunday
Flowerdale Estate is a beautiful and historic venue for your conference wedding weekend dinner bed and breakfast or high tea. Nestled between the Yarra Valley and Kilmore it's just over an hour's drive from Melbourne to Flowerdale Estate the perfect ..

View Event: Grand Hyatt High Tea
Grand Hyatt High Tea
∞ Saturday, Sunday
High Tea In Style By Cristina Re Experience High Tea in Style with Cristina Re's signature teaware collection, featuring an array of coloured and patterned vintage inspired fine china paired with tea cups and teapots, all trimmed in 24 carat gold ..

View Event: High Tea - Hopetoun Tea Rooms
High Tea - Hopetoun Tea Rooms
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 24th of December 2019
High Tea is served in Victorian splendour 7 days a week. Nowhere else in Melbourne's City Business District can you find a more charming setting and atmosphere than the Hopetoun Tea Rooms. Our High Tea is served on a 3-tiered stand & is prepared ..

View Event: High Tea at Homestead Cafe
High Tea at Homestead Cafe
∞ Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
High Tea is a favourite for many, with fresh homemade scones, hot savouries, dainty tea sandwiches and delicious cakes. All offered at affordable prices for that special occasion. High Tea options are available to suit groups and consideration of ..

View Event: High Tea at Om Nom
High Tea at Om Nom
∞ Saturday, Sunday
JOIN US EVERY WEEKEND FOR OUR INDULGENT HIGH TEA 12 MIDDAY & 2:30PM SATURDAY (Reservation only) MINIMUM 2 GUESTS SOMETHING SAVOURY Croque monsieur fingers Prosciutto & mustard mayo bites Mushroom & herb choux profiteroles Goat cheese & ..

View Event: High Tea at Parliament House
High Tea at Parliament House
∞ Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
The Parliament of Victoria has been serving traditional afternoon tea since 1924. Strangers Corridor is renowned for its freshly baked scones with jam and cream, exquisite pastries and finger sandwiches served on tiered stands. Enjoy a glass o ..

View Event: High Tea Live @ The Arts Centre
High Tea Live @ The Arts Centre
∞ 1st Sunday
Join us to celebrate Melbourne's two great loves - music and food at one of our very special High Tea Live experiences. Previously Jazz High Tea, High Tea Live sees the musical program expand beyond jazz, to include classical, cabaret, opera, Broa ..

View Event: High Tea Sundays | Left Bank Melbourne
High Tea Sundays | Left Bank Melbourne
∞ Sunday
Left Bank Melbourne is paying tribute to the traditional English afternoon tea, taking you back in time, where a quiet assembly at a tea room was once a commonplace to meet. It’s time to sit back and let the busy world outside, slip quietly by ..

View Event: High Tea | Hotel Lindrum
High Tea | Hotel Lindrum
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 24th of December 2019
We invite you to experience High Tea Melbourne at felt restaurant. Whether it be a birthday or a family get together the warmth and charm of Hotel Lindrum will ensure your day is one to remember. Presented in a tiered stand, High Tea service at f ..

View Event: High Tea | Mary Eats Cake - Brunswick
High Tea | Mary Eats Cake - Brunswick
∞ Monday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
CELEBRATE WITH HIGH TEA IN BRUNSWICK Mary's Brunswick Tea House is a gritty glam sanctuary amongst the hustle and bustle of Sydney Road. Opening Hours: Monday 11am - 4pm Tuesday CLOSED Wednesday CLOSED Thursday CLOSED Friday 11am ..

View Event: High Tea | Stamford Plaza Melbourne
High Tea | Stamford Plaza Melbourne
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 24th of December 2019
High Tea served in Harry's Restaurant | Stamford Plaza Melbourne Relax and enjoy our High Tea in the heart of Melbourne, indulging an assortment of meticulously crafted savoury bites, fluffy homemade scones and traditional finger sandwiches served ..

View Event: High Tea | The Hatter & the Hare
High Tea | The Hatter & the Hare
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 24th of December 2019
THE HATTER & THE HARE HIGH TEA MENU It’s not a surprise our High Tea service has a huge following. Presented uniquely to better showcase our savoury and sweet selections, you start feasting with your eyes the moment you are sat at the table. ..

View Event: Mamor High Tea
Mamor High Tea
∞ Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Melbourne's most decadent High Tea experience. Mámor Szalón in Collingwood transports you to an Old Europe Tea House with Melbourne’s most Exclusive Chocolates and Extensive Tea List. We specialise in unique high tea events and can offer a ..

View Event: Spoil Me High Tea
Spoil Me High Tea
∞ Sunday
Join us for this splendid event presented by M3 combining divine pampering treatments with delicious afternoon tea treats in the stunning surrounds of the bustling Cafe and Tea rooms in the Royal Botanic Gardens. Admission includes: - High Tea ..

View Event: The Gables High Tea
The Gables High Tea
∞ Wednesday, Sunday
High Tea at The Gables every Sunday and Wednesday. There are two sittings for a two-hour duration - one commencing at 11am, with the second sitting at 2pm. The cost is $65 for a Sunday and $55 for a Wednesday including boutique teas and a flut ..

View Event: The Langham Afternoon Tea
The Langham Afternoon Tea
∞ 1st of January 2019 To 1st of January 2020
The Langham, Melbourne is renowned for bespoke Afternoon Teas. Celebrate this timeless ritual of beautiful cakes, delicate ribbon sandwiches & petite fluffy scones. Relax in the ambience of Aria Lounge, sipping on our unique blend of Langham ..

View Event: Three Plates High - High Tea at Melbourne Marriott
Three Plates High - High Tea at Melbourne Marriott
∞ Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Treat yourself to an unforgettable high tea experience at Three Plates High at the Melbourne Marriott Hotel. An unparalleled high tea experience awaits you. Our afternoon tea menu features favourites such as petite scones, macaroons and mini sandw ..

View Event: Traditional High Tea @ Westin
Traditional High Tea @ Westin
∞ Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Westin's Modern Twist on the Traditional High Tea It's refreshing to attend a high tea service that focuses on the contemporary in terms of style and the foods and beverages on offer. Situated in the refined Lobby Lounge of the Westin Hotel Melbou ..

High Tea Information

I do love a high tea, although Josephine prefers to call it, Afternoon Tea.
Some call it Sunday High Tea even when it's served on Monday.
Words = Afternoon tea, high tea, high coffee, daggy tea, crafty tea.
How about Mother's Day Tea?

Also see Tea House | Tea Room | Tea Garden | Mother's Day

High Tea Etiquette

Minding your manners with resident high tea expert Michelle Milton.

The host should wait for guests to begin before starting.
Making sure everyone at your table has what they need and is comfortable is just good manners. Guests won’t be shy to ask before you start, but after you’ve filled your teacup and plate, they may be reluctant.

Avoid picking items from the tower with your fingers
Use your fork if servers are not provided. Do not remove a plate from the tower – you want to be sure all the guest can reach the tiny delicacies on offer.

The napkin should be folded along the diagonal and placed on your lap
When finished, fold the napkin and place to the side of your plate to signal to the host that you are finished.

Never start eating until everyone has been served
It’s a communal experience, designed to share and enjoy together. Make sure to chew your food with your mouth closed. You’ll have plenty of time for chatting between bites.

Scones should be broken into manageable pieces with your hands
Do not cut with a knife or fork. Use serving spoons to add jam and cream to your working plate – this will help to prevent raspberry jam on your high-tea best!

For further information, visit the High Tea Society for history, etiquette and perfecting your cuppa. 

Afternoon Tea Etiquette

The Windsor Hotel looks at the Etiquette. DOWNLOAD (pdf)

Melbourne's BEST Afternoon Tea
See Melbourne's Top 10 High Tea's.


The simple ‘cuppa’ has a far-from-simple history. Tea gained popularity with nobility in Britain after the tea trade took off in the 1670s with the advent of the British East India Company. A century later tea arrived in Australia with the First Fleet in 1788, and having ‘Tea’ in the new colony represented a time for social interaction and friendship rather than the more class-focussed rituals of the UK.

Afternoon Tea itself came about around the time that gas lighting was introduced in the 1800s in Britain. This meant people were able to stay up later into the night, and therefore sought to eat their evening meal later too. This shift left a large, foodless gap in the day.

Legend has it that in 1840, Anna, the Seventh Duchess of Bedford (one of Queen Victoria’s ladies-in-waiting), began to request tea and a small meal of bread and butter, cakes and biscuits in the afternoon to tide her over until dinner. Her innovative (and somewhat indulgent) habit became a highly social occasion, with friends coming to share the hot beverages, delicate snacks and convivial conversation. By 1880, the trend took off and afternoon tea spread to the homes of the upper classes with teashops later springing up across the country.

The name ‘High Tea’ actually refers to a similar practice adopted by the working classes midway through the Industrial Revolution. It involved a heavier meal served with tea at 5.00 pm, upon returning home from work. As it was served at high tables it became known as “high tea”, whereas the more sophisticated afternoon tea was technically named ‘low tea’ in reference to the low drawing room tables that the upper classes would sit around to carry out the ritual.

Source: thehotelwindsor.com.au