Afternoon delight: 7 best Melbourne places for afternoon tea

Photo: iStock

Photo: iStock

Melbourne is all about the brunch – but what if you’re after something a little fancy a bit later in the day? Afternoon tea is often overlooked when it comes to culinary indulgence, but we’ve got you covered.

Here are some of our favourite places for a treat in the afternoon, from award-winning coffee to decadent high tea.

La Belle Miette

  • 30 Hardware Lane
  • 8 Collins St Melbourne
  • 432 Church St Richmond
  • A pop-up kiosk at Chadstone
  • Open until: 6pm

La Belle Miette means “beautiful small things”, which is exactly what you’ll find at this Melbourne-based patisserie.

It’s the perfect location for those days where you just want to slip away to France for the afternoon and treat yourself to something bite-sized.

The patisserie specialises in the daintiest of delights, from macarons to dragees (chocolate-covered confectionery), as well as a range of Mariage Freres teas. La Belle Miette can be found at four locations throughout Melbourne.

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  • Emporium Melbourne
  • Shop 342, Level 3, 287 Lonsdale St
  • Shop 8, 318 Little Collins Street, CBD Melbourne
  • Open until: 7pm

It’s hard to go past Belgian couverture chocolate when deciding on an indulgence for the afternoon, especially when the shop’s motto is “the pursuit of perfection is a worthwhile endeavour”.

This chocolate salon is the home to such decadent treats as the Chokolait pavlova as well as their mousse cake, a dessert which fuses chocolate mousse with a sponge cake base – just when you thought the treat couldn’t get any more delightful!

You can find Chokolait in the Melbourne Emporium or on Little Collins Street.

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St Ali Coffee Roasters

  • 12-18 Yarra Place, South Melbourne
  • Open until: 6pm for coffee, kitchen closes at 5pm

If you prefer your cup of coffee in the afternoon or evening, or you need multiple brews throughout the day, then grab an award-winning one at St Ali in South Melbourne.

It stays open till 6pm, which is a rarity among coffee shops, and is housed in an edgy warehouse space equipped with distressed decor and filled to the brim with Melbourne atmosphere.

There’s a beverage for all kinds of coffee lovers here, including the X-Rated Liquid Christmas Cake (black spiced rum, Grand Marnier and espresso), for those who like a little adventure in the afternoon.

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Smith and Deli

Pop in to Smith and Deli if you fancy your treats vegan and your delis New York-style.

The lines here can be long but it’s worth the wait. This adorable retro deli will satisfy your afternoon cravings with its case of buttery pastries (you won’t believe it’s not real butter!), pies and loaded sandwiches if you’re feeling something heartier.

If the name doesn’t give it away, the deli is an extension of successful vegan restaurant Smith and Daughters, so it also serves food rich in flavour and decadence despite the 100 per cent plant-based recipes.

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  • 285-287 Coventry Street, South Melbourne
  • Open until 6pm Sunday to Thursday, and 10pm Friday and Saturday

If you’re looking to fill your afternoons with something sweet, be sure to stop by Bibelot on Coventry St. While the plush velvet decor sets the scene for a traditional high tea, the curried egg sandwiches are replaced with eclairs, macarons and wine, giving these high tea sessions a French air. With three sessions to choose from, each including an array of scrumptious delicacies, Bibelot is the perfect place to overindulge in an afternoon of luxury. You’ll find Bibelot located at the Coventry St entrance to Chez Dré cafe in South Melbourne.

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Little Cupcakes

Nothing beats the afternoon slump quite like enjoying a red velvet cupcake in one of Melbourne’s most iconic laneways.

Open until 5.30pm, Little Cupcakes on Degraves St has over 20 different flavours of mini and standard sized cupcakes, each one equally as adorable as the next.

Tuck into your cupcake (or cupcakes) on the quaint table setting out the front, or treat yourself to a take home box filled with flavours like Oreo Cookies & Cream and Belgian Chocolate.

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