Design and cuisine have long gone hand in hand, as anyone who’s ever stopped to admire their meal before devouring it understands; but, the Westbury Hotel in Dublin, Ireland, has taken the notion one step further by adding a new twist to the High Tea tradition, inspired by the best in local craftsmanship.
Tucked into a corner off Dublin’s famously hip Grafton Street, the five-star, family-owned hotel has long been a popular destination for the classic afternoon ritual, thanks to their modernistic Gallery featuring a private art collection. But now through October 17, timed to the biennial release of Portfolio: Critical Selection 2015-2016, published by the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, the hotel’s pastry chef Tatjana Upelniece-Kiselova takes the room’s artful ambiance up a notch, serving up a delightful array of miniaturized morsels that bear a resemblance to the works of top Irish designers. Think a dulcey panna cotta, peach, and caramel treat based on a wooden vessel designed by Liam Flynn; a sour cream mousse with blackberry cremoux inspired by a sculptural neckpiece by Angela O’Kelly; a chocolate éclair with lemon curd taken from a walnut and ash chest of drawers by Cillian O S Suilleabhain; a vanilla cheesecake with Earl Grey ganache inspired by the clay vessels of Jack Doherty; and a blueberry rollage with chocolate mascarpone Chantilly drawn from the glasswork of Karl Herron.
With the addition of tea sandwiches and scones, and you’ve got a recipe for spoiling your dinner, but don’t skip a reservation at the hotel’s excellent brasserie-style Balfes restaurant to complete the Westbury experience. $50 per person, $60 with champagne; $384 for High Tea Package with stay at hotel; 353-1/679-1122; doylecollection.com.