New York City is one of the best places to take a break for afternoon tea. With tea places that range from cozy and kitschy to elegant and refined, there is something for all tastes and budgets. Nothing is better than an afternoon break when you've been out on the town all day. Without further ado, here are the seven best places in New York City for afternoon tea.
Experience Afternoon Tea In These 7 Places
This cozy British enclave is both grocery store and restaurant offering traditional British dishes like bangers and mash, shepherd’s pie, and full English breakfast as well as beloved biscuits, candies, beverages, and much more to take home. It’s a favorite (or should we say favourite?) spot amongst Anglophiles and ex-pats and their afternoon tea is no exception. You’ll feel like the Queen while you sip your warm tea along with adorable sandwiches, fresh scones, and cakes.
This whimsical Wonderland-themed tea shop is perfect for kiddos (and kids at heart). In addition to their afternoon tea featuring mini sandwiches, scones, preserves, and more, they also offer a “Wee Tea” just for the little ones. It comes with a small pot of herbal or fruit tea and their choice of kid-sized sandwich or treat.
Hidden in a brownstone in Gramercy Park, Lady Mendl’s is the speakeasy of New York tea houses. This elegant spot offers an abundance of Victorian charm and a tempting selection of gourmet sandwiches and pastries, making it a perfect spot for special events like showers and birthdays. Be sure to plan ahead as reservations are needed.
The Russian Tea Room is as legendary as it is charming. The famous red leather booths can be seen in many a Manhattan-based film (such as Tootsie) and it oozes Old World opulence. The Russian Tea Room offers a variety of tea and food options, everything from gluten free to kid-friendly. Their classic afternoon tea will always satisfy, with everything from quaint sandwiches (like curried chicken salad or Scottish smoked salmon) to petit fours. For a fancy upgrade, why not add champagne?
The tea takes center stage at this understatedly elegant tea house. That’s because they offer more than 100 loose leaf varieties, hand-picked by Bosie’s certified Tea Master (who happens to be the youngest woman in the country with the title). Sip your pick from their impressive tea list while you nibble mini scones, sandwiches, tea cakes and house made macarons (courtesy of their French pastry chef).
If you’re looking for a moment of zen amidst the hustle of NYC, try the Japanese-style tea at Cha An. This peaceful escape offers a robust tea list along with sweet and savory treats. You can order tea and food à la carte or pick one of their prix-fixe menus. Try the Chakura Set, which comes with a variety of Japanese goodies including tofu and seaweed salad and a dessert, like homemade mochi or black sesame crème brûlée.
The Plaza is a New York icon and tea at the Palm Court is a must-do. Their extravagant tea service comes with fresh baked scones, a variety of gourmet sandwiches (like roasted chicken salad with black truffle aioli), and tantalizing pastries and desserts. Treat yourself to an upgrade with champagne or a house cocktail. If your little one is a fan of Eloise, don’t miss the Eloise Afternoon Tea just for kids. In addition to tea and pint-sized sandwiches and pastries, kids can choose from a list of soda and tea melanges, like the chamomile ginger ginger ale or Eloise root beer float. They’ll feel so fancy!
This article was written by Katie Vaughan.