Guzzling a venti latte you purchased through a drive-through window is about as far from civilized caffeine consumption as you can get. Slow down for a bit and instead, get your mid-day fix with the tradition and treats associated with afternoon tea. From the city to the burbs, tea houses are keeping this practice alive with well brewed pots served up alongside tired trays of decadent little distractions that will help you remember that a little formality can be plenty of fun.
1 Swann Lounge, Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia
The definition of every white-gloved little girl's tea party, the atmosphere at this top Philadelphia hotel is dignified without feeling daudy. Sip a classic tea or opt for a more modern mix like the Chocolate Mint Truffle Roobios or Pear and Caramel black tea. There are two menu options: social, which includes tea, scones, sandwiches and pastries; or royal, which adds on a cocktail for those needing something a little stronger.
One Logan Square
Philadelphia, PA 19103
2 Mary Cassatt Tea Room at The Rittenhouse Hotel
Off the lobby of the hotel, dip into a cozy chair and enjoy the garden just beyond the windows in this elegant tea room. Organic and traditional tea blends are paired with the signature menu, which includes a sweet array of current scones, tarts and pastries. Opt for the Queen Victoria option to add on a glass of sparkling line and champagne biscuits.
210 West Rittenhouse Square
Philadelphia, PA 19103
3 Taste of Britian
One only needs to turn to the URL of this Main Line find to know what to expect. Casual and just a tad quaint, the tin ceiling and country patterns add to the feeling of taking in tea in a friend's parlor. The afternoon tea includes the full line up of scones and pastries, but a full menu featuring local produce means more hungry guests can also dine on salads, pasties, pot pies and more.
503 West Lancaster Ave.
Wayne, PA 19087
4 XIX at Hyatt at The Bellevue
XIX's stunning cafe rotunda, featuring plaster reliefs and dainty balconies overlooking the city below, plays host to and elegant afternoon tea. Score a table by the windows and order up a spread. Pots are paired with scones and sandwich platters, not to mention some of our favorite pastries in town.
Broad and Walnut streets
Philadelphia, PA 19102
5 Tea & Cakes
Opened by a restaurant industry vet who was craving a taste of a by-gone era, this friendly little place pipes Big Band in over the speakers and serves up hearty fare with their loose teas. Breakfast and lunch menus are tempting, but their full spread in Sunday High Tea, where you get salad, soup, sandwiches, scones and dessert. Oh, and tea.
112 S. Jackson St.
Media, PA 19063