high tea : bellisa cafe
by Mei Leong
Sometimes high teas come from the least expected locations. If I told you this high tea was served within view of a Harley Davidson dealership in a pot holed car park, would you believe me? This rather fetching one is served at Bellisa Cafe, in little old Bedford (parts of which need a dire revamp – in all honesty the motorbike dealership is the best looking building on the strip!).
Nestled between a dodgy looking trading company and tech shop resembling a jail, Bellisa Cafe is deceptively busy on Sundays. This maybe because it’s one of the few places in the area to get a half decent coffee. Or perhaps it’s the stacks of cakes, muffins and sweets overflowing the counter. But I reckon it’s because this place serves three tiers of the cutest sweets for miles around.
Bottom tier from left to right – chicken finger sandwich, caramelised onion quiche, spinach and ricotta terrine, French onion (I think) savoury scone.
The first tier had some interesting savouries. To be honest, it’s rare to find a fresh out of the oven quiche on a high tea set (and there are some really crappy, reheated quiches out there). Bellisa’s caramelised onion quiche had the breathe of the oven on it. The sweet bite of the onions sank into the sharp cheese, quickly followed by the buttery, short pastry. Barely set with a slight quiver, the quiche was delicious.
No high tea is complete without a scone and strangely enough, this one was savoury. A miniature scone with a French onion filling was odd, but good. The spinach terrine was falling apart but was surprisingly more-ish, with chunks of orange cutting through the crumbly ricotta.
Now, the second tier is where the action really happens.
Whoopie pie, I love thee.
If you’ve stuck with me this far (congratulations) you’re going to find out the best bit of the high tea. The red velvet whoopie pie. These are worth the drive into suburbia, the drive back and then some. Pillows of red velvet cake, sandwiched with icing and topped off with even more icing, they were as light as air. Like a soft, giant cookie with luscious, lemony cream cheese filling. Not overly sweet, these whoopie pies could be the next big thing after cupcakes…
Next, we plunged into demitasse cups of chocolate mousse. They were a tad ‘bouncy’, probably from a heavy handed dose of gelatine, but otherwise we scooped it all up, grateful for the sugar hit.
I have to admit, by the time we ascended to the top tier, I had run out of appetite (ugh, blame the flu). Good thing Jess knows a good cupcake when she sees one. The coconut cupcake was soft and fluffy. I was totally envious watching Jess bite down on the feathery, shredded coconut icing, punctuated with a red cherry. Reports came back it was a good cupcake – but the trifle… now, that was in another league altogether.
Left: Top tier of coconut cupcakes and strawberry trifle. Right: French chic home wares at the back of Bellisa Cafe.
The strawberry-custard-berry coulis-sponge confection was to die for. According to Jess – it was better than the whoopie pie! Damn that flu. Well, Jess had hers and then gladly moved on to mine. It was that good, people!
Countless cups of bottomless tea and barista made coffees later, we moved on to the next stage. Shopping. The back of the cafe is dedicated to French chic home wares – an alluring collection of aprons, cloches and cookie jars, which we spent far too long browsing.
A hidden gem, Bellisa’s high tea, at $30 per person is certainly worth booking in for. Gorgeous sweets, good value, great service, plus shopping (!), more than makes up for the location. I could really do with that whoopie pie, right now.
See my high teas page to find more high teas in and around Perth.
60b Walter Rd, Bedford WA 6052
T: (08) 9370 1348
High tea is served every Sunday from 1pm.
Cafe is open 7 days, 7.30am – 4pm.
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