Afternoon Tea Review // Mandarin Oriental New York

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Afternoon Tea Review of the Mandarin Oriental New York

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Update: The Mandarin Oriental New York is no longer serving afternoon tea.

I’m back at the Mandarin Oriental New York on the 35th floor at the Lobby Lounge for afternoon tea. I went with Georgia and Sara and we were taking turns to take pictures of the sweeping views of Central Park South and Central Park. The view alone is worth a visit.

SETTING: ★★★★☆
The Lobby Lounge is spacious with tables spaced far enough apart that it feels intimate. It doesn’t feel stuffy and strikes a balance between casual and luxury with its comfortable seating and lack of tablecloths — although I do prefer tablecloths. (See pics of the interior space and my review from 2012.)

Getting a table by the windows are a bit tough and never guaranteed, but make sure you ask for one when making a reservation — you may luck out.

Service is usually excellent (friendly and efficient), but I’m going to knock off a star since we had a lot of trouble towards the end trying to find a server to get the check. It seemed like everyone disappeared.

To make a reservation, you have to call the Lobby Lounge directly which can be a pain since they never seem to pick up the phone.

Afternoon Tea Review of the Mandarin Oriental New York

There are two pages of tea to select from. There isn’t a huge variety, but the selection is excellent. I had a bit of a hard time trying to choose one since so many looked tempting. Tea comes in a white teapot with a paper filter with loose tea. I had the Mandarin Oolong which had citrus notes.

Afternoon Tea Review of the Mandarin Oriental New York

SCONES: ★★★★★
They used to serve savories and sweets on a three-tiered tray with warm scones served in a basket but they now have each course come out separately.

This is the first time I’ve experienced this, but they serve scones first, instead of savories. I thought it was odd and inquired and was told that’s how they have always done it.

The scones are excellent. Warm and in perfect portion size. Devonshire cream and homemade jams are on the table to be shared but I didn’t mind the sharing since they had enough on the table for three people.

Afternoon Tea Review of the Mandarin Oriental New York

After the scones plates were taken away, the savories arrived. On each plate were four mini savories. Each one was better than the next. Fresh and delicious.

Afternoon Tea Review of the Mandarin Oriental New York

For the last course, sweets, they were presented on a circular shaped three-tiered tray. Gorgeous. Some of the mini sweets were excellent, but a some were just eh in terms of flavor and by being overly sweet. I loved the variety though.

The afternoon tea service at Mandarin Oriental is number four spot on my list of afternoon teas in NYC and with its view and tasty savories and scones, it remains at the top of the list.

INFO: Mandarin Oriental New York | 80 Columbus Circle at 60th Street | New York, NY 10023 | 212.805.8800
AFTERNOON TEA HOURS: Daily from 2:30PM – 4:30PM
COST: $48

About Jee Choe

Welcome! I'm a certified Tea Sommelier and a self-proclaimed bubble tea and iced tea master. I'm all about making tea EASY and DELICIOUS.

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  1. Hi Jee, I love your blog! Would you happen to know if we can order the sandwiches we like? And if we can order extra savories and no sweets? I’m in Honolulu, taking my son to NYC in November. We go to tea here at Halekulani often, and because I am diabetic, they always let me have extra savories and hold the sweets. My son only likes smoked salmon sandwiches, and Halekulani always accommodates him. He also does not like sweets. If you’re not sure, I’ll just call the hotel, but I thought I’d ask you first. We want to go here so we can see the view. Thank you!

    1. Hi Mae! Since you should need to reservations for your afternoon tea at the Mandarin Oriental, you should make the requests when you call. I don’t see why they can’t provide more savories since you won’t be getting the sweets. Enjoy your time in NYC!