High Tea at Rippon Lea Estate, Melbourne

Photographer: Michelle Milton
High Tea at Rippon Lea Estate
High Tea at Rippon Lea Estate

Rippon Lea Estate is a slice of Melbourne history.

The original section of the house was completed in 1868 for Frederick Sargood who found success during the Victorian goldrush. He was both practical and a visionary, with the household including plumbed indoor toilets, its own electricity supply and an elaborate underground watering system for its gardens.

Rippon Lea’s third owners, the Nathan family, lived in the house for over 60 years, and in 1972 when Mrs Jones (nee Nathan) died she left the property to the National Trust – a move that saw the Federal Government’s attempt at a Compulsory Acquisition Order to obtain 4 acres of the garden for the expansion of the ABC Studios withdrawn. So we (and the surrounding neighbours) can thank the very generous Nathan family for their gift of Rippon Lea to the community.

High Tea at Rippon Lea is most special for it’s gorgeous surroundings. Do factor in time to take a stroll around the 14 acres of garden. You can also download an audio tour, or join one of the many daily tours offered (plan your visit).

To access the Ballroom, where the High Tea is held, you will find yourself walking up the sweeping main drive before turning down the side of the house. As you pass along the house look to your right for a beautiful outlook across the garden, as well as a up close view of the beautiful house. The Ballroom has been filled with tables, spaced very comfortably, making the most of the many windows providing different aspects of the house and garden.

As we stepped inside it was a little like entering a new world. The china on the tables was very pretty, the layout charming and the soundtrack – the Bridgerton Official Playlist!

One word of warning – we attended on a very cold Melbourne winter day, and while there is adequate heating, if you are seated near the door as people come in and out it can be a tad nippy.

As for the high tea itself – all very pleasant. Don’t be expected to be blown out of the water by the most memorable of gastronomic feasts, this is not that (but it’s also all very nice – we enjoyed all the elements). To round out the feast we were served Mumm Champagne and the teas on offer were excellent.

Rippon Lea Estate High Tea Menu:

High Tea at Rippon Lea Estate
High Tea at Rippon Lea Estate

*includes teens between 13-17 years


  • Mini croque monsieur, melted gruyere cheese, shaved leg ham, Bechamel sauce (NF)
  • Poached chicken and pesto ribbon sandwich
  • Heirloom tomato and cream cheese, balsamic, cucumber sandwich (V,NF)
  • Air dried wagyu bresaola tart, honey, parmesan custard, burnt rosemary, salt (GF,NF)
  • Herring caviar and citrus crème fraiche tartlet (GF,NF)
  • Margherita Arancini, basil aioli (GF, NF, V)


  • Homemade lemonade scones, caramelised pineapple and lemon myrtle curd, strawberry gum jam, vanilla cream (NF, V)
  • Lemon cake, mango mousse, mint (V, NF)
  • Blackberry meringue tart (V, GF, NF)
  • Raspberry Lamington, white chocolate ganache, freeze dried raspberries (V, NF)


Children’s Menu (2-12 years)


  • Ham and cheese finger sandwich (NF)
  • Margherita arancini, basil aioli (GF, NF, V)


  • Mini jam doughnuts, raspberry sugar (NF, V)
  • Chocolate cupcake with strawberry buttercream
  • Homemade lemonade scones, caramelised pineapple and lemon myrtle curd, strawberry gum jam, vanilla cream (NF, V)


  • Complementary glass of Mumm sparkling on arrival
  • Free-flowing Tea Drop tea and All Press coffee
  • Bar menu available on the day


*all menu items are subject to changes according to seasonality and availability.


High Tea Melbourne – find more experiences
in our High Tea Venue Directory

Rippon Lea Estate:

192 Hotham Street, Elsternwick, Victoria 3185


Various dates 11am & 12pm


Adult‎ – $79pp
+ Booking Fee ($4.36pp)
Teen‎ (13-17 years) – $49pp
+ Booking Fee ($3.20pp)
Child‎ (2-12 year) – $19pp
+ Booking Fee ($2.05pp)

Prices are correct at the time of publishing, but subject to change. Please contact the venue for further details.

Kate Nelson

Kate Nelson is the publisher of Meetoo - a website of personal recommendations about awesome activities for families with children aged 0-12 to do around Melbourne and beyond. Kate, along with her mini-reviewers, report back on current events, favourite venues and things that are fun - providing her readers with honest insights and loads of ideas about all the cool things happening in Melbourne for families.

Articles by Kate