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    Curry leaf scones, shrimp rolls and bubbly — tea time gets an update at Taj Coromandel

    Do we make the distinction between afternoon tea and high tea? While one is about dainty foods like scones with cream and is a social affair, the other is about more substantial fare like pot pies. What Taj Coromandel has been offering for a month now is a happy mix of the two. So you get your scones — curry leaf flavoured and borderline leaden — some sandwiches, a tortilla, shrimp rice paper rolls, cakes, biscotti and more. The venue is the lounge, and the spread looks forlorn, what with a lone waiter doing the rounds. Placing an order for a cuppa or a flute of bubbly (Moet Chandon Rose Imperial, if you prefer the Champagne experience) may take a while. With hotel guests checking in or wedding parties floating past, you’re not going to sip on tea and serenity. That said, you get to choose from a sizeable list of 30 teas and coffees. There are single estate teas from Darjeeling, Assam and Nilgiris and single origin coffees from Brazil, Honduras and Panama, besides staples like espresso. Unfortunately, one expects a premium or singular experience at the Taj Coromandel, even at teatime. So while the oat cookies are scrumptious, they ought to work at  making this the best late afternoon spot in town. 3 pm to 6 pm. Coromandel High Tea at Rs 500 and Champagne High Tea at Rs 900. Details: 66002827

    Rosella Stephen

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