Afternoon Tea at Zoe’s Lounge at Fairmont Château Laurier (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada)

Bar area at Zoe's
Zoe's lounge with a view of the sunroom

If there’s a hotel that is famous in Ottawa, it is the Fairmont Château Laurier. Not only for the stunning architecture but there’s so much history involved in this hotel. It was built as one of the classic railroad hotels by the Grand Trunk Railway of Canada a century ago, it is a massive turreted structure, a venerable castle that is remarkably spacious and very lovely inside. A friend and I decided to have afternoon tea here despite the fact it was still in the middle of a heat wave.

Tea menu
Assortment of teas waiting to be steeped
Glasses of Moët & Chandon Champagne and tea

What is pretty neat about picking my own choice of tea is this tea menu that has photographs of what the teas would look like on the left side of the wooden menu and the right with its corresponding name and descriptions. We ended up choosing the Creamy Earl Grey and Ontario Ice Wine teas; my friend loves Earl Grey and rarely changes her mind when it comes to afternoon tea and I opted for a tea that might be a blend that’s unique to the hotel (ice wine is a famous dessert wine made in the Ontario province). The Earl Grey was indeed smooth and creamy in body with its signature bergamot flavor. The Ontario ice wine tea was pleasantly sweet without any added sweetener and delicate floral, berry notes; not bad for a non-alcoholic take on the wine.

We did have a lovely glass of Moët & Chandon Champagne to go with tea. Moët & Chandon has some bite and it’s crisp champagne that I particularly enjoy.

Food spread for afternoon tea for two
Savory plate
Prosciutto & peach on focaccia

When the tier of food arrived, we liked the varying selection of savory sandwiches. The highlights were the prosciutto and peach on foccacia for sweet and salty bites. The smoked duck on rye crouton was interesting for the smoky flavors from the bread and crunchy bread. The adorable cursive “F” (for Fairmont) emblazoned broiche bun filled with apple and turkey salad was quite good and freshly made. The desserts were very good especially the lemon meringue tarts and the pistachio financier cake topped with fresh raspberries.

Overall, it’s a great respite from the sightseeing of downtown Ottawa. The staff is friendly and efficient with getting the food and beverages to the table and happy to chat with you if you have questions or even witty comments about the dreadful heatwave.

To view more photos of this visit, please view the gallery below or CLICK HERE for the photo set:

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Fairmont Château Laurier

Official Website
1 Rideau Street
Ottawa, ON K1N 8S7
Phone: +1 613-241-1414


I shoot, eat, and drink. My full time job is a hospital administrator. Moonlighting as a freelance photographer and food and travel writer.