Restaurant Review: The Waiting Room

Location: 8 Whiteman St, Crown Casino, Southbank, Melbourne
Phone: 03 8679 1800
Cuisine: Morning Tea/ High Tea, Wine bar, Bar food
Overall Impression: 6.5/10

It all began with Rockpool and then came Spice Temple and now The Waiting Room (TWR). On the horizon, there is his new venture - an Italian Restaurant opening later this year. Not surprisingly, also in Crown. Suffice to say, the Neil Perry Empire’s expansion is on the move and certainly taking over the fine dining scene in the Crown Casino complex. Whilst I am certainly not his biggest fan given my mixed experiences, it is a fair observation that everything Perry touches seems to turn to gold. His latest Crown addition, TWR is more than a trendy bar. The menu also offers Perry’s take on the traditional ‘Afternoon Tea (served daily between 12pm – 5pm) and High Tea (served daily between 5pm – 9pm).
As part of P’s hens’ weekend, we decided to treat her to Afternoon Tea at TWR.
The savoury biscuits to start were lovely.
The sandwiches were pleasant to eat and were kept deliberately simple.
The bottom tier was filled with ‘sweets’ and scones.
A key component to a successful Afternoon tea is good scones. These scones were delightfully light and immersed in a fresh apricot scent and flavour. That vanilla bean cream was to die for and the strawberry jam was delicious.

The other ‘sweets’ looked beautiful and were moreish. We were all pleased with the quality and standard of the offerings.
In terms of service, the lady who waited on us kept our tea pots filled throughout our time there. She was attentive and friendly and certainly made our group of five feel very welcome.

The main downside to an Afternoon Tea with your girlfriends at TWR is the fact that it is situated in the lobby of Crown. As we were seated at the entrance, it was slightly awkward as we felt like we were “on display” while hotel guests entered and looked curiously at us.
Whilst TWR offers a commendable Afternoon Tea option for Melbournians, it is certainly not an experience that is unique or that goes above and beyond existing establishments.
That said, it is an experience I would recommend and have thoroughly enjoyed.

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