Rating: ★★★★☆

Address: 103/F, The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui尖沙咀柯士甸道西1號環球貿易廣場(ICC)香港麗思卡爾頓酒店103樓

Telephone: 2263 2270

http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/Properties/HongKong/Dining/Cafe_103/Default.htm

麗思卡爾頓酒店103樓的Café 103以前叫The Chocolate Library,每天供應下午茶餐,自助午餐自助晚餐。Café 103的行政糕點主廚Richard Long每個月都會推出一款不同主題的下午茶餐,而四月份的主題是柑橘巧克力柑橘巧克力匹配,甜品整體而言都很有水準。難然價錢較貴,兩位的午茶餐定價$568,而且餐廳在週末很繁忙,但Café 103的室內裝修很優雅,又有無敵海景,所以一直是受歡迎的午茶餐地

Café 103, located at The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, is a sleek and elegant café that serves a chocolate-themed afternoon tea, buffet lunch and buffet dinner. The café used to be called The Chocolate Library, and was renamed in 2012 to reflect its location on the 103th floor of the hotel.

Besides the dizzying, unobstructed view of the Victorian Harbour and an enticing selection of chocolate desserts, the most special thing about Café 103 is the different themes for the afternoon tea sets that Executive Pastry Chef Richard Long introduces every month!

An afternoon tea set for two costs $528 from Mondays to Thursdays, and costs $568 from Fridays to Sundays and on public holidays. Despite the sophisticated decor of the café and the friendly, attentive service, I still found the afternoon tea set a bit overpriced for the amount of food we had been served; but apparently, this was not an issue for most customers, as the café was very popular and a reservation for a table in the weekend should be made at least a few weeks in advance!

The Citrus Chocolate Afternoon Tea Set for April 2013, as its name suggested, had a citrus theme, and creatively combined a range of exotic fruits with chocolate. The afternoon tea sets at Café 103 are all presented in a box – you can see “The Chocolate Library”, the café’s former name, printed on the box!

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The presentation of the tea set was visually pleasing, with the items neatly arranged on a smart wooden shelf.

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(1) I started off with the Rainbow trout, apple, laugen bread, and the Black Forest Ham, pumpkin seed loaf. The flavours of these two sandwiches were brilliantly balanced, and I particularly adored the element of crunch in the pumpkin seed loaf.

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(2) The Spicy Cheese Spread on Rye Bread was tasty, with a sprinkle of paprika adding zing to it.

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(3) Next, we tried a Trio Citrus Shot. The interplay between the different textures of jelly, chocolate mousse and biscuits worked very well.

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(4) I liked the touch of yellow on the Choux de bouda, which was lively and summery. The puffs were light and airy, and the filling was decadently velvety.

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(5) The Lemon Praline, Black and White Chocolate Bowl was creamy and chocolatey, and the hazelnut nicely broke up the silky textures. The Soft Lime Brownie was buttery and satisfying, with a generous addition of nuts making it extra appetising.

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(6) The Mandarin Bowl had an attractive citrus note which lifted the flavours of this dessert, and the crumbly biscuit base formed a good contrast with the creamy textures on top.

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(7) Lastly, we tried the Yuzu Tonka Bar and the Orange Chocolate Tarte. The Yuzu Tonka Bar was delicate and ethereal, and the light flavours were made even more refreshing by the appealing taste of yuzu. The Orange Chocolate Tarte, on the other hand, was heavier and more substantial, with the taste of orange brilliantly cutting through the strong taste of cocoa.

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(8) Normally, a cup of latte is obligatory for me in the afternoon, but since we were at a chocolate emporium, my friend A and I decided to go for an iced chocolate and a hot chocolate. A wanted something icy and thirst-quenching, but I preferred the hot chocolate, which was creamier and more frothy!

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Dear Readers, which drink would you prefer on a hot summer day?

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Conclusion: The Citrus Chocolate Afternoon Tea Set, which was bright and inventive, offered something different from classic afternoon tea sets. The tartness in each of the desserts was invigorating, and the fruitiness was perfectly suitable for Hong Kong’s sometimes suffocating weather. However, the traditionalist streak in me made me crave scones while I was having the tea set. Even though the prices were a tad steep and the venue was too busy during the weekend for us to genuinely sit back and relax, the majestic view and luxurious setting of the café will surely be able to attract many customers.