This post contains affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you book or purchase through these links. You can read my full disclosure policy here.This year on my annual solo NYC trip I decided on a laid-back itinerary that included all new things I’d not done on any previous visit to the Big Apple. This, of course, encompassed food and since I love tea experiences, I decided to try out these five places for afternoon tea in NYC! My list includes classics and uniquely themed places for fun times and great food!
Afternoon Tea in NYC
1 | Bluebird London, NYC
One afternoon after I played in the freshly fallen snow in Central Park, I stopped in at Bluebird London, NYC. Located in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle, it was the perfect location right there on the southwestern edge of the Park.
I loved the modern, decor of the cafe. The chic design plus an array of colors paints a visual quite pleasing to the eye.
For my tea, I ordered the Tumeric Mango featuring luscious and juicy mango, pineapple, and yuzu with notes of jasmine. Look how vivid the color is! I was hoping that meant it had a strong citrus flavor and it most definitely did!
My bright yellow tea perfectly complemented the cute, three-tiered tower of treats the server placed in front of me. As is customary, I started at the bottom and worked my way up.
So that meant I started with the sandwiches which included Malabar chicken with apricot and apple, H. Forman and Son London Cure, smoked salmon and lemon butter, Heirloom free-range egg with mustard cress and truffle, and Cucumber with cream cheese, chives, and dill.
Everything was super fantastic with the exception of the Cucumber with cream cheese, chives and dill. I despise cucumber so that didn’t happen. My favorite, however, was a tie between the Malabar chicken with apricot and apple and the Heirloom free-range egg with mustard cress and truffle.
For intermission, there were plain and fruit scones served with strawberry jam and Devon clotted cream.
Next came the final act-yummy desserts! How cute are the Mary Poppins themed treats?
Left: Well-Fed Bird Cream Puff Right: Chocolate Chimney
Left: Fairyland Meringue Right: Cherry Medicine & Jane’s Macaron
Did you notice the sugar sprinkled on that spoonful of cherry medicine? 😜
The Tumeric Mango tea pairs nicely with milk and honey
45 USD per person | 62 USD with champagne
Reservations via Open Table or Bluebird London’s website.
2 | The Plaza Hotel
Afternoon tea at The Plaza Hotel is both iconic and classic.
It was by far one of the prettiest table settings I’ve ever had for afternoon tea.
Speaking of tea, I got the Tropical Garden which is a caffeine-free white tea featuring mainly exotic fruits packed with vitamins such as papaya, mango, pineapple, peach, pear, and apple. In addition, it had hints of rosehip, lemongrass, and cornflower blossoms.
Simply put..it’s good guys. Really good.
The food was also fantastic. I got the Valentine’s Day Tea special they had and it was amazing. For an additional fee, you can add a glass of champagne although I passed on this.
Aren’t they all cute and creative, not to mention fancy? I couldn’t wait to dive in!
Left: Roasted Prime Rib on a Brioche Slider Right: Peekeytoe Crab in a Squid Ink Cornet
Left: Roasted Beet with Whipped Goat Cheese Right: Lobster Roll with Daikon Sprouts
After the delectable savories, these freshly baked scones arrived served with double Devonshire cream, lemon curd, and preserves. Have I mentioned I’m in love with lemon curd? I like the cream and preserves, but that lemon curd is just on another level!
Next came what you are all probably waiting for…the desserts!
Left: Chocolate Ganache & Caramel Sea Salt Sable Right: Lychee & Rose Water Duo Dome
Left: Grapefruit and Campari Macaron Right: Hazelnut Chocolate Plasir Cake
Left: Milk Chocolate and Cherry Baileys Tuile Right: Red Velvet and Raspberry Cake
Warning: You will eat it all and need to be rolled out of there. Yes, it’s that good!
Choose from different menus and a large selection of teas. Perfect for adventurous palates
Ranges from 72 USD to 105 USD per person
Reservations via Open Table
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3 | Alice’s Tea Cup
Known as New York City’s most whimsical tea house, Alice’s Tea Cup does have a quirky personality. It’s so fun especially for those who are fans of Alice in Wonderland!
I had The Nibble which is tea for one and includes unlimited tea, choice of one scone (served with preserves and cream), choice of one sandwich and assorted mini cookies.
For tea, I had the Peach Blossom which is a well-balanced organic white tea blended with natural peach flavor and accents of essential orange and tangerine oils. If you are at all a fan of peach tea, this is a MUST try!
I also chose the Lapsang Souchong Smoked Chicken Breast Sandwich with Granny Smith apple slices, greens, and herbed goat cheese on seven-grain bread. I loved the tart and savory in this. Plus, I’m a huge fan of goat cheese.
The sandwich is regular-sized cut into two triangles. Select from over 100 teas. Add a savory scone (extra fee) to The Nibbler to balance out its sweet-heavy menu.
39-58 USD per person for one | 71 USD total for two | 85 USD total for three
Reservations via Alice’s Teacup website
4 | Bergdorf Goodman
You may know that the famous department store Bergdorf Goodman offers afternoon tea in NYC as well. Although more of a classic service, it does have really fun dishes…
that even feature its monogram! I’m a huge fan of monograms in case you didn’t know. 😃
This time I ordered the Jardin Bleu for my tea. It is a black tea consisting of a blend of teas from India and China and is flavored with rhubarb, wild strawberry, and cornflower petals.
So, I guess I have a type. And my type seems to be fruity and fragrant!
As I already mentioned, the food is very classic and included tea sandwiches like chicken salad, ham and gruyere cheese, egg salad, salmon with caviar, and cream cheese with cucumber. The cream cheese with cucumber didn’t happen (as usual) and my favorite was the egg salad and the salmon!
Intermission (what I call the plate between the savories and the sweets) presented itself in the form of cranberry scones served with cream along with strawberry and apricot preserves.
Left: Yummy tea sandwiches Right: Delightful desserts
The dessert tier included an assortment of goodies like chocolate coffee cake, pistachio layer cake, lemon tartlet with toasted whipped cream, a macaron that tasted like pecan pie and an almond-flavored cookie with green glittery icing!
Get a table near the window to look out over Central Park while you dine
45 USD per person | 62 USD per person with champagne
Reservations via Open Table
5 | The Morgan Library & Museum
**Hurry! The Tolkien Culinary Journey Through The Hobbit is only available until May 12, 2019**
When researching the different options for afternoon tea in NYC, I came across The Morgan Library & Museum. I have to admit it wasn’t exactly on my radar. BUT…when I went to check it out, I discovered that there was a special Tolkien exhibit.
To complement this exhibit, they put together a Tolkien-inspired culinary experience. The “Inspired By Tolkien: Maker of Middle Earth. Over the Hill, Across the Water, and EvenThere and Back. A Culinary Journey Through the Hobbit” was super creative and super delish!
I again took advantage of the Valentine’s Day specials and ordered the Inquisitive Cocktail which had Grey Goose vodka, strawberry juice, lime, and ginger. I have to say it was one of the better drinks I’ve had. It tasted a lot like a strawberry martini which is one of my favorites!
I thought the presentation of the food was pretty cool and the food itself very creative:
- Two Fried Eggs (Not Six) and Ham-Not Poached, Not Broken
- Cold Chicken & Pickles
- Enchanting Pepper-Roasted Meat
- Mincemeat Pie & Cheese
- Beorn’s Twice-Baked Honey Cakes
- Sustaining Not Entertaining Cram
- Dried Fruit, Gold Coin
I’m sure if you are a fan of The Hobbit and/or Tolkien, you will really enjoy this culinary experience!
Both the tea and the cocktail were an additional cost. If the Tolkien themed meal is no longer going on, look to see what the current theme is. Before Tolkien, they had a Frankenstein themed afternoon tea!
39 USD per person
Reservations via Open Table
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Classics, uniques, traditional, affordable, special occasions…like I said above…they’re all right here!
Have you had afternoon tea in NYC? Where was your favorite place? Which place on this list piques your interest most?
‘Til next time…
Leave a Reply - I Love Comments!
Jenn and Ed Coleman says
The Morgan Library & Museum Tolkien tea sounds interesting, but other than honey cakes, it seemed like the hobbits were awful hungry on their journeys to there and back. Bilbo’s birthday seemed like quite the feast but that still leaves a lot of book to go. I would go for the fruit scones and clotted cream myself.
Hi Ed-Haha!! Hilarious! Scones and clotted cream are always a great choice. Thanks for reading! 🙂
The Holidaymaker says
Such a great idea to do this! Especially on a cold day. I think my favourite was Bluebird, I loved the interior and the photos you had along with your description looked fantastic. Thanks for sharing. I might just have to look them up next time I am in NYC!
Hi! Yes Bluebird was pretty cool I have to say. Definitely try them out in NYC next time you go. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Jamie Italiane says
I don’t understand what you have against my cucumber friends, but think you should invite me for tea the next time you are in the city. I live about three hours away….
Hi Jamie-Haha! I wish I liked cucumbers, but I absolutely can’t stand them! I would love to meet up next time I’m in the city solo which is usually annually. My second trip for this year is with another girlfriend. I didn’t know you were that close so I didn’t think to ask. I wish I had known, but I do now! Thanks for reading! 🙂
Dana Howard Freeman says
I love this post! I never really think about having ‘tea’ in NYC. Perhaps at the Plaza but not anywhere else. Great suggestions. I am in the city several times a year.
Hi Dana-That’s where I started out with my thoughts on tea in NYC. The Plaza. Then it was Bergdorf Goodman and then I did a search and found out there are a million places. So I decided to do my own “afternoon tea tour” in NYC! Hope you get to do some of these when you are in NYC next. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Afternoon tea is so much fun. I’ve never experienced it in NYC and would love to visit Alice’s Tea Cup. The atmosphere looks different from other afternoon tea places I have been to. I’ve also never had a sandwich with slices of apples in them, so that is something unique that I would like to try 🙂
Hi Candy-Oh wow, if you’ve never had a sandwich with apple slices, get one soon. They aren’t overly common as in every cafe you come across, but they aren’t really unique. You could find them where you live most likely. Alice’s Tea Cup was definitely different and I do recommend it. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Patricia Pagenel says
I wish I had this list when we visited NYC last! I love afternoon tea, but we did not have one in NYC. I would have loved to try the Plaza Hotel, the roasted prime rib on a brioche slider and the peekeytoe crab in a squid ink cornet look especially yummy. They tend to be pricey, unfortunately. Though it’s good to see some more affordable options – for next New York trip!
Hi Patricia-Yes, there are definitely options for all budgets. The Plaza is pretty pricey…definitely worth it in my opinion if you are an afternoon tea lover, but there are less expensive options too. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Michael Hodgson says
Ahhh, allow me to provide a bit of edumacation to the high tea process — divining my inner British heritage. All clotted cream does not come from Devon. If it comes from Devon, it will be called Devonshire cream. Otherwise, simple clotted cream. Now, how did you eat it with your scone? If you spread the cream on your scone (scon) first then you ate it as you would in Devon. However if you are spread the cream after the strawberry (and it must be strawberry) jam, then you were eating as you would in Cornwall. 😉
Hi Michael-I ate it both ways (one by accident). And yes to strawberry. It has to be strawberry for me regardless of what is “custom”. LOL! Thanks for reading! 🙂
Bernie Jackson says
Ah, I was headed here to say what Michael said. Although as a person from Devon, I have always taken my cream tea as though I was from Cornwall. I won’t tell if you don’t. And another bit of Britishness – you might get offered Thunder and Lightening for your scone in Cornwall – that will be treacle along with the cream.
I’ve had the pleasure of afternoon tea during a stay at the Plaza, when my mum and I were living it up in style. I seem to remember the peekytoe crab being my favourite taste then. The other options all look fantastic too, although I’m sad that the hobbits are almost out of afternoon teas. They seem the kind of beings to enjoy a fine meal at every opportunity.
Hi Bernie-Yes, both yours and Michael’s comments are interesting. I list what I have based on the menus so it’s interesting they aren’t calling it the correct thing! Do tell me about Thunder and Lightning! The peekytoe crab was really good! And yep, sadly the Hobbits are out of afternoon teas. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Mohana and Aninda says
Afternoon tea is the best time of the day! There’s nothing like a good cup of tea, some sandwiches, and the desserts like the ones at the Plaza Hotel. All the tea rooms look warm welcoming. I’d love to try each one of them.
Hi Mohana-I agree, it is the best time of day. Hope you get to try these if you are ever in NYC. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Alice Ford says
I just love afternoon tea, and know i’m really craving some scones and biscuits. That looked so good. I don’t know that I have ever had a laid back NYC visit but I will have to do Tea Next time I’m there.
Hi Alice-This was my first time having a laid-back NYC visit and it probably was one of my favorites, if not my favorite! Hope you get to return to NYC and do tea soon. Thanks for reading! 🙂
Melody Pittman says
Fun post and definitely caught my attention! I love a good afternoon tea. I’ve been wanting to go to Alice’s Tea Cup but after seeing your list, Bluebird has moved up to #1. Oh yeah. I never thought about Bergdorf having tea, though we are frequent shoppers there. Hmmm…it all looks great! Thanks for sharing.
Hi Melody-Haha! I knew about tea in Bergdorf and I haven’t shopped there (yet). So we’re the opposite! Bluebird is pretty cool and fabulous food. Try one of these out on your next NYC trip! Thanks for reading! 🙂