With warm scones, beautiful pastries, and a glass or two of Champagne, afternoon tea is certainly a luxury. Thankfully for New York City residents and tourists, there are plenty of restaurants serving afternoon tea — ranging from ultra-luxurious high tea with caviar and pastries in some of the city’s best hotels to simple (but still very delicious) cream teas with tea and scones served alongside clotted cream and jam. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, looking for unique things to do in New York City, or just crave dainty finger sandwiches and a great cuppa, we’ve got you covered.
Here are 10 of the best places for afternoon tea in NYC.
Related: The 9 Best Hotels Around the World for Afternoon Tea, From London to Mumbai
The Palm Court at The Plaza Hotel
Arguably the most iconic spot for afternoon tea in the city, The Plaza Hotel’s high tea service includes all the favorite fixings in a grand setting. Four menus — Manhattan Tea, Plaza Signature Tea, Grand Imperial Tea, and the adorably themed children’s Eloise Tea — include a range of finger sandwiches and savory bites, freshly baked scones with house-made preserves, and beautiful pastries. The Manhattan Tea is $99 per person, without Champagne, and the Eloise Tea is $80 per child.
After a day of shopping at Bergdorf Goodman, there’s no better way to relax than with afternoon tea at the department store’s BG Restaurant. For $56 per person, the daily service includes tea sandwiches, scones with Devonshire cream and preserves, and a variety of petit sweet treats.
Brooklyn High Low
Friday through Sunday, find afternoon tea at Brooklyn High Low in Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights neighborhood. The three tea experiences, starting at $48 per person, include The Classic, The Grand Vanderbilt, and The Grand Heights, all served with scones, sandwiches, desserts, and more.
The Russian Tea Room
Founded by members of the Russian Imperial Ballet nearly 100 years ago in 1927, The Russian Tea Room is another famous place to indulge in afternoon tea. Offered daily, afternoon tea menus range from the standard, with several sandwiches, blinis, scones, and sweets, to a Royal Afternoon Tea, which includes an international caviar tasting. Vegetarian, gluten-free, and kids’ options are available, too. The standard tea menu starts at $80 per person.
The Gallery at The Carlyle
Inspired by Topkapi Palace in Turkey, The Gallery, located inside The Carlyle, a Rosewood Hotel, is another great choice. The beautiful Upper East Side hotel offers a classic afternoon tea experience every day in an impeccably decorated setting. Afternoon tea starts at $65 per person.
Lady Mendl’s Tea Salon
Located in a brownstone in Gramercy, Lady Mendl’s Tea Salon is another cozy spot for afternoon tea in NYC. Guests have a choice of teas, including classics like earl grey and English breakfast, served with a seasonal soup or salad, traditional tea sandwiches and scones, sweets, and a vanilla cream gâteau de crêpes. The prix fixe menu is $65 per person, and children under 12 years old aren’t permitted.
Tea & Sympathy
This British restaurant serves favorites like bangers and mash, shepherd’s pie, and a Sunday roast, along with afternoon tea, offered all day. Afternoon tea starts at $40, but you can also opt for a lighter cream tea ($14.50), which includes two scones served with jam and clotted cream and a pot of tea. Head to the shop next door to find British snacks and imported goods — Tea & Sympathy has everything an English expat or Anglophile could need.
Alice’s Tea Cup
Another classic NYC afternoon tea pick, Alice’s Tea Cup has locations on the Upper East and Upper West sides of Manhattan (along with a to-go location in Brooklyn). Tea for one at the Manhattan locations starts at $36 and goes up to $66 for an option with unlimited scones and sandwiches. You can also order à la carte and opt for a scone or two with a pot of tea.
Grand Salon at Baccarat Hotel New York
Afternoon tea is a luxury in itself, but this daily service at the Baccarat Hotel is inspired by royalty. The Prince of Wales option includes several savories, sweets, and warm homemade scones, while Le Petit Prince children’s tea offers kid-friendly snacks. The latter is $65, and the former is $90.
The Whitby Bar at The Whitby Hotel
Located inside The Whitby Hotel just off Fifth Avenue, The Whitby Bar hosts a classic afternoon tea. For $60 per person, guests can choose from a range of specialty teas and indulge in finger sandwiches, tasty desserts, and of course, scones with jam and cream.