As you have probable already figured out about me, tea is one of my favorite things especially afternoon tea at fancy places with scones. But being Gluten Free makes it hard to find places that accommodate, luckily it is much more common than it once was and there are plenty of places as you can see from my other post that lists out the best GF teas in New York City.
This post is dedicated to The Lowell Hotel, located on the Upper East Side at 63rd and Madison. The Pembroke room at this hotel is the perfect quaint place if you are looking to avoid the tourists and just have a nice quiet experience. For GF at the Lowell they do offer scones and macrons but if you are looking for the whole big show nothing beats The Palm Court at The Plaza. This boutique hotel is over accommodating and the staff is very attentive which makes the overall experience worth it for any tea lover visiting the big apple.
Breakfast at Tiffany's
If there is one thing the great Audrey Hepburn is known for it is her iconic scene as Holly, standing in front of the 5th Ave Tiffany & Co store with her pearls, sunglasses and croissant staring into the beautiful window. That scene is known by most people who have never even seen the movie. They can’t even tell you the song Moon River was made for Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Audrey was the first to sing it on her windowsill or that her cat is named cat. But now that Tiffany’s has added the Blue Box Café it has brought a lot of hype back to that movie and the iconic images taken from it.
I recently was able to get a reservation, which seem to be near impossible because it just opened at the end of last year. My mom and I go to tea every time she visits, it is our thing we have always done since I interned in London. So since she was visiting we had to go to this new experience at the Tiffany store especially since all the way back to my first time in New York while I was in high school (I am originally from Michigan) my number one place to see was the Tiffany’s store. That was the time everyone was obsessed with those heart chain necklaces and bracelets. When I stepped into the store it was so luxurious, couples picking out engagement rings, the high ceilings, shinning diamonds. It was what made me dream that when someone was going to propose to me he would get down on one knee and pull out that pretty blue box with white ribbon and we would live happily ever after.
Back to reality my mom and I went to the Blue Box Café and everything was Tiffany blue, from the walls, to cups to the desserts it was the perfect little tea place for any fan or the store and movie come to life. We started with their Tiffany Blend tea which if you love tea as much as I do was pretty good, we bought one on our way out with matching cups. As an afternoon tea addicts, we had to try their goodies. They do not offer gluten free options, so I had to pick and choose what I ate. They had blue colored chocolate marshmallow eggs with eatable nest, silver bar shaped chocolates with their logo and of course scones and finger sandwiches. My mom and I are still Plaza lovers for the perfect afternoon tea experience especially since they offer everything gluten free but for Tiffany’s it was a great moment to remember being such a fan of the store and movie.
First you have my ultimate favorite spot Alfred’s Tea Room. You all know I LOVE tea and this place is like my heaven, they have everything from matcha to rose and complete with a pink décor that just screams me. This place offers croissants and Boba options. But if coffee is more your vibe don’t fret go just a block down the street to their original Alfred coffee shop which has endless options for you.
La La Land
Los Angeles, the city I use to call home for 2 years, I recently visited and got to explore some of my old favorite spots. Take a look below to see my list of my favorite restaurants and cafes in the West Hollywood area.
Best Restaurants/Cafes in West Hollywood Area
Alfred’s Tea Room
Beverly Hills Hotel Cabana Cafe
Zinque is just down the street and if you are looking for that cool outdoor LA vibe restaurant this French place hits the spot. It is a celeb hot spot and little unknown to people not from the area. They have the best rice bowls with chicken or salmon you can’t go wrong.
No one can forget the iconic Beverly Hills Hotel. This hotel is the perfect hotel for me (see my dedicated post on the hotel here). But we are talking about the Cabana Café especially for breakfast the avocado toast and smoothie combo is unbeatable.
Then we hit the Ivy the once very well-known place still hits the spot when it comes to elaborate brunch or dinner options. They offer complimentary champagne upon arrival and with two locations, West Hollywood and Santa Monica you are never too far away from their delicious chocolate chip cookies they provide when you leave.
Then we have Urth Caffe, if you are familiar with Entourage then you have seen this spot appear more than once on the hit show. Urth has multiple locations in LA but the West Hollywood location is for sure the best. This spot has great Gluten Free options along with breakfast, lunch and dinner matched with their infamous blended Boba green tea drinks (a must have).
Matcha is one thing I cannot live without. For those of you who have not caught on to this it is the purist form of green tea. Green powder mixed with water and you can add any kind of milk to make it a matcha latte. More antioxidants than any fruit and gives you a great caffeine fix without the jitters and no sugar crash like from coffee. I have this stuff every day and living in New York the craze is just beginning. More and more cafes have been starting to offer the stuff and even Starbucks has caught on (but they have a boatload of sugar in their premade version, beware). See the list below of my top matcha places in New York and if you can’t make it to the city order some PanaTea on Amazon, they come in pre-made packets great for the on the go pick me up.
Cha Cha Matcha – Two Locations, Midtown and Soho – Also offers Matcha ice cream 😊
Matcha Bar – Chelsea
Bluestone Lane – Multiple Locations (Great GF options as well)
Chalait – Multiple locations
By Chloe – Amazing food Gf, vegan and all around great place. Will do post on details soon
GLUTEN FREE STYLE
Something my mom and I always do when she visits me is go to high tea. Ever since I studied abroad in London we have been obsessed with tea and and all the cute mini sandwiches that come with it. But being Gluten Free makes it hard for me to find accommodating places, let alone a GF scone which is the best part of the whole thing. But good news is that people realize how much of a demand GF items are now a days so they have started to offer special menu's for people like me.
The Palm Court at the Plaza has THE BEST tea in New York. They offer the whole deal GF scones, sandwiches, cheesecake the exact same menu as regular tea which is amazing so you don't lose any of the special pieces that make up a high tea. Plus they offer Eloise Tea at the Plaza for little girls complete with pink cotton candy and a mini tea pot, just adorable.
If you can only go to tea at one place in the city no matter GF or not I highly recommend the Palm Court to make any tea a very special occasion. Just make sure to make reservations since they fill up fast even a month in advance. But if you can't get in to the Plaza or not your vibe, take a look at my other GF tea recommendations for the city.
1. THE PALM COURT AT THE PLAZA
2. THE RUSSIAN TEA ROOM
3. LOWELL HOTEL
4. HARNEY & SONS SOHO
5. MANDARIN ORIENTAL