Everybody loves a spot of tea, not to mention the finger sandwiches and scones that perfectly pair with a pouring. If you’re a purist, a princess or even a punk, let these top 5 tea parlors guide you to a delicious pot, no matter what your bag.
1 The Lobby Lounge at the Montage Beverly Hills
While not a traditional tea parlor per se, the Lobby Lounge at the Montage Beverly Hills serves the ultimate late-day break for those looking to steep in a little haute water. Everyday from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm, Executive Pastry Chef Richard Ruskell crafts chic sweets and bites for Afternoon Tea, poured in hand-painted china, courtesy of porcelain master Lissi Kaplan. Guests can sit and sip tea varietals while maxing and relaxing to the serene strains of a classical harpist. Perfection.
2 The Rose Garden Tea Room and Café
Those looking for a little Anglo-inspired splendor can take refuge at The Rose Garden Tea Room and Café. Located on the grounds of the famed Huntington Gardens, tea champions can pour a pot, while nibbling classic afternoon tea sandwiches and spreads, not to mention or scone or two, all while checking out three acres of roses. Talk about a garden party.
3 Chado Tea Room
The Chado Tea Room is sugar, and spice, and everything nice. Painted pretty in pink, Chado offers over 200 varieties of tea as well as a classic tea menu, including the sinful souchong chicken sandwich. Purists will probably want to stick with the scones, served with cream and jam, but personally, I always order the coconut cake. If you're looking to woo that special someone and trying to stay away from a hum drum dinner-and-movie date, I'd book a reservation at Chado for tea instead.
4 Scarlet Tea Room
It must be said that the Scarlet Tea Room's five course afternoon tea is the cream of the crumpet. The traditional nibbles are scrumptious but the the signature strawberries Romanoff is one seriously delicious dessert so save room. In addition to afternoon tea, Scarlet's also serves an evening tea menu until 10:00 pm so those of us who can't knock off midday can still get our hands on a freshly brewed red hot pot.
Located in the heart of Culver City, Royal/T is far cry from the Queen's service. Inspired by the Maid Cafés of Tokyo's Akibahara district, this tea-parlor-cum-café-art-space-cum-salon reads more like animé take of tea on crack rather than a crooked pinky affair. If that sounds a bit frightening, don't worry. The teas and infusions are delicious as is the menu, which updates tea sandwiches with kobe beef and spicy tuna. Think of this as the perfect tea service for those who want to get punk with their crumpets.