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Calgary’s Deane House

Blending history with the enduring art of afternoon tea, Calgary’s landmark Deane House presents an exquisite menu that oozes charm and lashings of clotted cream.

Built-in 1906 for British expat turned Mountie, Captain Richard Burton Deane, Inglewood’s culinary mecca presents a nod to its roots with a thoughtfully curated seasonal menu of delicate finger sandwiches, flaky pastry, decadent truffles, buttery golden raisin scones with housemade preserves and, of course, an ample list of loose leaf teas.

“I’m never not creating an afternoon tea menu!” exclaims pastry chef Jaimie MacIsaac, who began baking with the seasons after inspiring strolls through New York’s iconic Union Square Green Market. Training under the mentorship of Matthew Lodes, MacIsaac took a leadership position at beloved Brooklyn bakery, Poppy’s, before moving to Alberta amid the height of COVID. Since 2022, MacIsaac’s talents have been well placed at Deane House, where she tasks herself to transform the kitsch and nostalgic into something delectably elevated and modern. For example, her winter tea menu featured jovial cardamom cream-filled snowmen religieuse, a twist on the traditional French patisserie treat replete with smiling faces and colourful scarves. As the seasons shift, MacIsaac schemes up new offerings to the “flavour matrix”, keeping in mind the life and foodways of the property’s surroundings.

Should the teapot run dry, the Deane House signature cocktail menu is inspired by late great jazz musicians, evoking a nostalgic sense of occasion befitting of the setting. Whether it’s a French 75 riff or a swill of floral Earl Grey, it’s pinkies out and bottoms up at Deane House.— Rebecca Felgate

Photography by Marnie Burkhart.