Autumn Tea at Glen Eyrie Castle
We found ourselves at the entrance of Glen Eyrie Castle once again. Tagging along for Autumn Tea is my mother. Driving up the road, she pulls out her phone, as she does every time we’re here. She snaps a few photos and pulls up to the main gate. The guard is a charming, handsome man, maybe 25 years old. A stark comparison to the (usually) grumpy 70 year old we normally run into. He asks us a few questions, flashes us a smile, and wishes us a lovely time.
As we get closer, the castle greets us on the left, peeking through the trees.
We park, and careful not to slip on the patches of ice that are starting to cover the road, we make our way up to the heavy double doors. We shake the snow off our boots, step in, and are promptly ushered into the Castle’s Music Room.
The waiter instructs us to choose our teacup and saucer, shows us to our table and takes our tea orders.
We’re not huge tea drinkers, so we choose a tried and true Bourbon Street Vanilla Rooibos and a Sleepy Hollow Pumpkin Chai, which seems like a safe choice.
The Bourbon Street Vanilla is described as “Madagascar vanilla and almonds give this tea a sweet wonderful, exotic, jazzy depth”, while the Sleepy Hollow Pumpkin Chai is “Warming and comforting in the chai tradition with pumpkin ghoulish notes. Excellent with milk for ghostly visuals.”.
Bourbon Vanilla is smooth and very sweet. You can easily find the vanilla and almond; it’s exactly what it says it is. The Pumpkin Chai doesn’t really taste like pumpkin, just… slightly different to a regular Chai, and slightly bitter.
You can choose different teas once the pot is finished, and there are quite a few that have piqued our interest, including Winter Palace Marzipan, which is touted as their best seller for six years in a row, and Tuscany Pear, which, how could it not?
Moving on to the menu, it reads as follows:
Black Truffles, Chicken Tenders, Brioche, Truffle Bavarois
Ham, Pears, Mushrooms, Gruyere
Rye Bread with Garlic Aioli
Chorizo, Manchego Cheese
Cinnamon Apple Scone
Maple Rum Pecan Shortbread Cookie
Colorado Cheese Board to Share
Honey Comb, Jam, Nuts (Spicy Almonds)
Pumpkin Chai Cheesecake Tartlet
The Chicken Velouté is served in front of us, gently swirling the truffle and petals that rested in the plate, filling the air with a delicate, earthy smell. It is served warm rather than hot, which intentional or not is fine by me. The Chicken Tenders are on the colder side, which is just a bit off-putting. Flavorwise, however, I love it. It is silky, light, and aromatic. An extra dash of salt and it’s perfect.
Served alongside the Velouté is a thick slice of homemade Brioche with Truffle Bavarois. I wouldn’t call it a Bavarois, it is more along the lines of mousse or whipped butter. Either way, it is absolutely delicious.
The soup is followed by a Colorado cheese board, consisting of honeycomb, almonds, housemade raspberry jam, multigrain crackers, and three different cheeses: ColoRouge, Camembert, and an ash-dusted bloomy rind which I’m 99% certain is Ashley by MouCo since the other two kinds of cheese are their creations as well.
All the cheeses are bloomy rinds, very creamy but not runny. The variations in flavor are mild, and all are very enjoyable.
Up next is the Texas Toast, which is good albeit a bit dry. A little more Gruyere would have made a big difference, both with the dryness and with the bread-to-filling ratio.
The Pastrami is equally tasty and with a generous amount of garlic aioli, is much more balanced than the Toast.
Last but not least in the savory category are the Madeleines, which are heavier and denser than you’d expect for a Madeleine, but much lighter than I imagined considering it has chorizo in it. Apart from the chorizo and manchego, I believe there are also some green onions. A little more would have been nice, but these are my favorite by far.
We finally make it to the desserts, which have never disappointed and today is no different. The scone is crumbly and dense and lovely with Devonshire cream; the cookie is heavy on the maple and light on the pecan, but a great cookie nonetheless; and the cheesecake is smooth, not too sweet and actually tastes like pumpkin chai (unlike the tea).
Once we finish our meal, we exit through the glass doors at the back of the foyer and take the long way back to the car, admiring the castle and grounds.
I can’t help but feel like we’ve stumbled into Narnia.
Back around and over the bridge, the sun has started to set. We take one last picture before heading home.
The tea is $22.95 + tax on weekdays (Monday – Thursday), and $29.95 + tax on weekends (Friday – Sunday) since weekends include 2 or 3 more food items than weekdays do. Tea is served at 11:00 and again at 14:30. Keep in mind the menu is different every season, every year.
All in all, we had a great time. Our server was kind and attentive, the food was delicious, and the place is beautiful.
Glen Eyrie is located on 3820 North 30th Street, Colorado Springs, CO.