Who needs London when you can have Afternoon Tea in Manhattan’s Upper West Side? Or not, we can have both!
I first learned about Alice’s Tea Cup from my blogger friend, Ameena, a smart and witty LA based writer for Fancy That Fancy This. On her last visit to New York City, Ameena mentioned that she would be taking her 5 year old daughter to Alice’s Tea Cup. Although I hadn’t heard of the adorable bakery, I figured the place had something to do with everyone’s childhood favorite, “Alice in Wonderland.”
On a gorgeous St. Patrick’s Day afternoon, my husband and I headed to the Upper West Side for my very first Afternoon Tea. To say I was excited is an understatement.
Alice’s Tea Cup immediately captivated me with its whimsical colors and décor.
Just look at the variety of desserts this place has to offer… everything from cookies to scones to cakes to cupcakes!
This place was really crowded when we arrived, we waited about 30 minutes before we were seated.
102 W.73rd Street
New York, NY 10023
(Upper West Side)
Other Locations: 2 in Upper East Side
MENU: Alice’s Tea Cup Menu
CUISINE: Afternoon Tea, Bakery, Breakfast & Brunch
RECOMMENDED TO: Casual Dining, Couples, Groups, Kid Friendly.
My husband and I went for the “Mad Hatter” Afternoon Tea which is served all day! The “Mad Hatter” is meant to be shared between 2 people and includes 2 pots of tea, 3 scones with preserves & cream, 2 sandwiches, assorted cookies, and a cake/tart.
We each started with a pot of tea. I wasn’t in the mood to experiment so I went for the traditional English Breakfast Extra Fancy Tea, a blend of Assam, Ceylon, and Chinese teas. It was slightly strong, flavorful, and perfect with a little milk.
My husband went for the Indian Chai which was spiced with cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and vanilla. Milk and honey is then added which yields one of the most delicious cups of Indian “Masala” Chai I have ever encountered. Personally, I loved the Indian Chai more than the English Breakfast. Warm and comforting!
And then we were presented with our 3 tier stand.
For the scones, you have the choice of 3 scones based on the day’s baked goods. I chose the Pumpkin and Buttermilk Scones, whereas my husband chose the Mixed Berry Scone. The scones are served with preserves and clotted cream. Every bite of the scone along with the cream was pure heaven!
I knew going in the Pumpkin Scone would be delicious based on the reviews, yes indeed. It was topped off with a caramel glaze which added a touch of sweetness to the scone. The Buttermilk Scone was good, but also quite boring and blah, I should have known better and ordered something with flavor. The Mixed Berry Scone was buttery, tart, slightly sweet, and delicious. It was my second favorite out of the 3 scones served. The scones were slightly cake-like, buttery, and moist.
For sandwiches, I opted for the Cucumber and Watercress Sandwich. It was assembled with lemon chive butter on whole wheat bread – flavorful and light just as I had imagined it to be, perfect for afternoon tea.
My husband went for the Chopped Tea-Egg Salad Sandwich (on the right) which consisted of eggs, watercress, and mayonnaise on 7-grain bread. This sandwich was scrumptious and very filling.
We were also served an assortment of cookies which were kind of boring and didn’t even taste freshly baked. I feel this is on the Afternoon Tea menu just for the sake of adding some cookies, instead I would suggest just serving one freshly baked cookie that actually tastes good. In addition, I also chose the Lemon Tart out of the 3 choices of cakes/tart, and it was HORRIBLE! The lemon was so tangy, so tart, and lacked sweetness, in addition, it tasted so egg-y almost had that taste of steel – YUCK! Very disappointing. I regret not ordering the Mocha Cake which was also an option.
VERDICT: 4 / 5
My very first “afternoon tea” experience was wonderful! I loved the experience as did my husband. The scones at Alice’s Tea Cup are fresh, moist, and loaded with flavor. In terms of sandwiches, I am restricted to vegetarian and egg-based sandwiches since I don’t eat cold meat, but the sandwiches I had were delicious.
The ambience here is quaint and homey, almost feels as though you are having tea at someone’s home. There were groups of girls in every corner making it an excellent hangout for girlfriends, or even mothers and daughters. Although I wasn’t quite sure if my husband would like this place, he really enjoyed himself, so I would say couples as well.
Since I absolutely thought the cookies and tart were a waste of money and food, next time I will skip ordering the Afternoon Tea and just go for the items that I will actually eat.
For 2 people I recommend the following:
A small pot of tea + 2 scones ~ $12
1 to 2 sandwiches, depending on how hungry you are. ~ $12 to $24
Sure you won’t have the fancy 3-tier stand, but you’ll still have excellent food and pay slightly less. How’s that?
I look forward to many more visits at Alice’s Tea Cup, particularly to try their assortment of teas – the variety of flavors here is unimaginable making this tea room a tea lover’s paradise! Thank you, Ameena.
Food: Excellent (scones/sandwiches) Horrible (lemon tart & cookie assortment)
Decor: Good (whimsical)
TELL ME: Have you been to Alice’s Tea Cup? What do you enjoy most about Afternoon Tea?