NYC | Afternoon Tea at Cha-An Tea House

Did you know Cha An does afternoon tea? Not just tea and sweets a la carte, but a full-service afternoon tea set.  

I wrote about the tea service for Serious Eats in 2011, but was back again for tea the other week. At $18 for the set, it’s still one of the best afternoon tea deals in town. 

Start first with mini bagel sandwiches. Plush and still warm, one comes smothered in strawberry preserves and cream. The other goes savory with smoked salmon, a mustard and pepper-laced mayo, watercress, and onions. 

Next are scones with blueberry preserves and soft whipped cream. Two scones per person, one with chocolate chips and the other infused with earl grey. Sometimes I’ll ask for an extra earl grey scone in place of the chocolate one. They grind tea leaves and fold it directly into the scone batter making for a intense, heady flavor. Most bakeries just infuse tea leaves in the baking liquid with tea-scented sweets…but I prefer the more potent route.

More sweets! Matcha shortbread in the center followed by a vanilla macaron (skippable), and wedge of “Japanese fruitcake” that’s infinitely better than “American fruitcake.” Think buttery poundcake dotted with sweet fruit. 

Matcha (or anything you wish) to finish. Hope you are having a good Thursday ^_^ 

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