Despite driving past Ranfurly Rd regularly, I have never been to the Florentine Tearoom, which is nestled away among a small row of shops. It's time to amend that.
Inside everything is primed to look like a high tea setting. The tables and chairs are stylish and mismatched and there's a long table down the back - where we head - with the option to sit outside with a gas heater for chilly days like today.
We have arrived mid-afternoon but the cabinet is still well-stocked with simple but dependable lunch options like chicken and avocado club sandwiches. Plus there's a small but nicely formed all-day breakfast menu.
I decide to stick with the theme and order from the selection of teas. The Tokyo lime tea sounds the most intriguing. It comes on its own small floral tray with a floral teacup and a clear teapot so you can see the leaves inside. The tea itself is slightly zingy and delicious.
For lunch, I choose the muesli from the blackboard menu and my friend decides on the chicken and leek pie. Both are very decently priced, especially the pie which is accompanied with a salad and costs less than $10.
The muesli arrives on another tray alongside yoghurt in a shot glass with honey drizzled on top, a small jug of milk and poached plums in a ramekin. The muesli is crunchy and fresh; definitely one of the more impressive versions I've eaten.
The chicken and leek pie looks most enticing and if it weren't for the beautiful presentation of my lunch I'd suffer from serious food envy. The pie has a wonderful texture. It's buttery and has a generous amount of chicken encased in lovely crisp pastry. The salad is made up of fresh greens and comes with chutney.
We return to the counter to investigate the sweet treats. We are spoilt for choice; there are macarons, date and orange scones and cupcakes which are housed on different cake stands.
I choose a sticky date pudding and my friend takes the plum and white chocolate brioche.
The sticky date pudding has a lovely rich flavour and it's moist and moreish. The brioche is also good, the chunks of poached plum mix nicely with the creamy white chocolate.
The Florentine Tearoom is the perfect place for a cosy catch up. We'll be back.
WHERE: 51B Ranfurly Rd, Epsom. Ph 09 630 0478.
WHEN: Monday to Friday, 7am-3.30pm; Saturday and Sunday, 8am-3pm.
WHAT'S TO EAT: A small menu, enticing cabinet food and plenty of sweet treats.
HOW MUCH: $37.20 for food and drinks for two.
WHAT DO WE THINK: Good food with thought gone into the presentation.
- Sunday Star Times