Dove's Nest, Calgary

It’s a shame none of us have time for afternoon tea anymore. Relegated to a luxurious treat in fancy hotels, I wish we could all stop for sandwiches with the crusts cut off every day.

Dove's Nest, CalgaryThe Dove’s Nest in Calgary is one of the few places I’ve found that does it on a regular basis for a reasonable price.

Part of Glenmore Landing, the cozy restaurant is open for home-style breakfast and attracts a regular clientele with its soup, sandwiches and homemade desserts for lunch. It offers afternoon tea Monday to Saturday 2-4 p.m.

The Dove’s Nest doesn’t have that white-glove, hushed, chandelier ambiance of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise (or the view), but it’s a different type of fuzzy warm tea feeling. It’s more of a rustic, checkered-tablecloth, homemade-baking kind of place.

High tea for two is $42.95. First, you get to choose from more than 100 selections of loose tea. Each person gets their own teapot.

A traditional, lovely, three-tiered tray comes out with all sorts of goodies. On the bottom are sandwiches and savoury tarts. On the day we went, we had:

  • cream cheese with dill on whole wheat with the crusts cut off (my favourite)
  • chicken salad on a mini bun (needed more seasoning)
  • salty ham salad and cheese (Cheese Whiz we thought, but it actually works)
  • a mini salmon mousse tart
  • a great warm spinach and cheese quiche.

On the middle tier are two massive homemade scones with whipped cream and raspberry preserves. Despite how dense they looked, the scones were quite light. I wish we had been offered Devonshire cream, which I only noticed later could be ordered for $1.50 extra.

Dove's Nest, CalgaryDove's Nest, CalgaryA handful of sweets sat on the top tier, including brownies, lemon tarts and cherry squares. I’d say this was the weakest link and I would have probably enjoyed the homemade pie more that I spied at the next table.

If you’re not in the mood for the full high tea, you can order a platter of finger sandwiches for $15.95 or a dessert platter for $13.95.

I like the homey feel of this afternoon tea; the owner came out of the kitchen to chat with everyone and ask how they liked everything.

Dove’s Nest, 1600 – 90th Ave. SW, Calgary, (403) 258-3300. Afternoon tea daily 2-4 p.m. Closed Sundays.

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