Tuesday, December 18, 2012

afternoon tea at butter avenue

Recently, Yvonne from th3hungrycat invited me to join her and her sister for Afternoon Tea at Butter Avenue and I didn't hesitate to accept. I was excited for a few reasons:
  • Yvonne's tweets about Butter Avenue always have me drooling
  • from their website, it looked like Butter Avenue's Afternoon Tea would have a modern twist
  • one word: macarons. Yes, macarons for Afternoon Tea.
Butter Avenue is a small, peaceful little cafe, with a clean, simple look that really liked. After settling in, we were given a Tea Menu to choose our drinks from - you can actually open up each little jar to smell the tea before making your choice. Calvin, who co-owns Butter Avenue with his sister Tina, mentioned that Roasted Almond is one of their most popular teas, so that's the one I chose. It has a lovely, nutty smell and steeps to a beautiful deep pink colour.

Besides drinks, Afternoon Tea at Butter Avenue consists of three components:
  1. amuse-bouche
  2. macarons
  3. mini tarts and cakes
After ordering our teas, we were invited to go to the counter and choose three macarons. It was a tough choice, I tell you, but I ended up going with a tea theme and chose Matcha, Earl Grey and Lemon.

The first course, "amuse-bouche", consisted of:
  1. smoked salmon mini croissant (This was really good. The croissant was buttery and flaky and the salmon was really nice. I think all three of us agreed this was the best item on the plate.)
  2. brioche
  3. three mini bacon and cheese quiches (more like a sponge-cake than a traditional quiche)

Then the macarons were presented. YUM! I loved the macarons - all mine had perfect flavouring - not too intense, but not too subtle. But what was even better than the macarons (I can't believe I just said that) was the square of vanilla and white chocolate mousse with a dark chocolate biscuit bottom that they came with. To serve, a fresh, hot espresso was poured into the "bowl" of the mousse. The vanilla and white chocolate mousse was extremely light (it reminded me of panna cotta) and offset the rich espresso perfectly.

The mini tarts and cakes plate (which Tina, the amazing creator behind the pastries, changes from time to time) was so pretty that I didn't know where to start. Luckily, Calvin pointed out the starting point (the pistachio cream puff), since the dark chocolate cake at the other end would be the richest (and should be eaten last).

From the bottom up:
  1. pistachio cream puff with white chocolate glaze
  2. mini strawberry tart and candy cane
  3. terre et neige cake - matcha mousse, dark chocolate sponge cake and vanilla mousse
  4. raspberry  and dark chocolate mousse cake
  5. mango jelly with coconut mousse on a pistachio tart base
  6. nutty dark chocolate cake - 66% dark chocolate, dark chocolate mousse, chocolate sponge cake and chocolate rice crispy
My favourite items on the pastry plate was definitely the raspberry and dark chocolate mousse (very intense raspberry taste) and the mango jelly with coconut mousse (it was a nice light break before I tackled the rich chocolate cake).

Although everything that I had at Butter Avenue that afternoon was a treat (except maybe the brioche, which was kind of bland compared to everything else on the menu), my absolutele favourite of the day was the vanilla and white chocolate mousse with the fresh espresso - it was an amazing idea and executed perfectly. 

If you're considering trying out the Afternoon Tea experience at Butter Avenue for yourself, there are two versions: the Lumière set ($29.50 CAD per person) and the De Luxe set ($45.00 CAD per person). The main differences are:
  • one macaron for the Lumiere set vs three macarons for the De Luxe
  • the vanilla mousse with dark chocolate biscuit cake and fresh hot espresso is only available with the De Luxe set
  • salted caramel latte, pepper mint latte and match latte drinks are available with De Luxe set only
Even if you don't go for Afternoon Tea, there are lots of other treats that you can pick up from Butter Avenue, including, of course, macarons, and these gorgeous St. Honore pastries.

A very special thank you to Yvonne for inviting me and to Calvin for hosting us. I had a great time and will definitely be back soon!


  1. Oh wow. We totally have to visit Butter Avenue whenever I am in the area!!!

  2. Wow!! I was thinking of going this week, now I'm definitely going! This looks amazing!

  3. Stephanie - You got it! Whenever you come up to Toronto, we'll hit Butter Avenue together!

    Sylvia - I would love to hear what you try at Butter and what you think of it!


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