Tea for Two: 7 Tea Parlors to Enjoy a Spot of Chamomile in NYC
Hot or iced, caffeinated or herbal — where you take your tea matters as much as what you’re drinking.
Enjoying a mug of tea in bed is the perfect end to a long day — but when you’re visiting New York City, why not venture out and sip your tea in a more exciting locale? These 7 spots are sure to delight both casual sippers and Earl Grey fanatics alike.
1. Nom Wah Tea Parlor
Tucked among the winding streets of Chinatown, you’ll find Nom Wah Tea Parlor, a dim sum spot that’s been serving up tea and small bites since 1920. We recommend ordering the house specialties: pork buns, scallion pancakes, and fried sesame balls with lotus paste. The extensive tea selection includes varieties such as oolong and long jing for just $1 a cup. For tea aficionados, Nom Wah offers premium brews for a bit more.
Nom Wah Tea Parlor is located at 13 Doyers Street.
2. The Russian Tea Room
Step into the slippers of a Romanov princess at the Russian Tea Room. This opulent Hell’s Kitchen establishment is decked out with sumptuous carpeting, gilded decor, and crimson leather booths set against rich emerald walls. The Russian Tea Room offers some pretty extravagant food, seasonal prix fixe menus, and of course, plenty of tea. Afternoon tea includes sandwiches, pastries, and even champagne (at a premium, of course). If you want something stronger than a spot of mint verbena, you may be interested in the Tea Room’s 40+ varieties of Russia’s finest vodka.
The Russian Tea Room is located at 150 West 57th Street.
3. The Plaza Hotel
Looking to sip your brew under a soaring stained-glass dome? You’ll love the Plaza Hotel’s Palm Court tea room. With a recently reimagined menu that includes tea by Palais des Thés and a new, expansive bar, a visit to the Palm Court will transform your afternoon into an exotic getaway. If freshly baked scones with double Devonshire cream sound like the perfect pairing, this is the spot for you. A bonus for the little ones: the Plaza Hotel is the setting of the Eloise books and movie, and the Palm Court offers a special tea menu to match.
The Plaza Hotel is located at 768 5th Avenue.
4. Alice’s Tea Cup
Have a fantasy-filled adventure at Alice’s Tea Cup, a tea room straight out of Lewis Carroll’s classic. Alice’s promises new scone flavors on the daily, tea eggs, homemade clotted cream, and prix fixe selections. Try ordering the “Jabberwocky” for a veritable bounty of unlimited tea, sandwiches, and scones. At the original 73rd Street location, you can wander through a magical gift shop to pick up a few Alice in Wonderland-themed gifts — perfect for your little Mad Hatters and Cheshire cats.
Alice’s Tea Cup is located at 102 West 73rd Street.
5. Radiance Tea House & Books
Founded to “embody the finest attributes” of the Chinese Tang and Ming Dynasties, Radiance Tea House provides a sublime selection of loose-leaf tea, not to mention on-theme books and gift sets. You won’t find scones here, but you can dig into spicy Chinese eggplant, steamed Chilean sea bass, and almond tofu with a strawberry glaze. Tea is the main event, of course, and Radiance serves up traditional Oolong, herbal, and white blends, along with a range of healthy teas intended to boost wellness.
Radiance Tea House & Books is located at 158 West 55th Street.
6. Serengeti Teas & Spices
Get ready to sample African-influenced blends at Serengeti Teas & Spices. At this small Harlem shop and tasting room, you can try flavors such as Moringa Olifera and Ewuare black fruit alongside your breakfast, brunch, or dinner. Serengeti also offers a variety of delicious cocoa flavors, sure to please the younger set. The tasting room is compact, so call ahead and book a private visit if you’re coming with a group.
Serengeti Teas & Spices is located at 2292 Frederick Douglass Boulevard.
7. Té Company
Ornate tea rooms are a treat — but if you prefer to enjoy your brew in a cozier setting, Té Company, located in the West Village, may become your new favorite spot. With decor that evokes more of a library setting than a tea shop, Té offers loose-leaf tea blends straight from Taiwan and prepared in traditional clay pots. If you’ve worked up an appetite touring the city, fear not: Té’s fruit-filled shortbread cookies are sure to hit the spot.
Té Company is located at 163 West 10th Street.
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