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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Lady Mendl's Tea Salon Place Review

Lady Mendl's Tea Salon Place Review

Website: http://www.innatirving.com/default.aspx?pg=dining-mendls
Address: 56 Irving Place New York, NY 10003

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I called a few days in advance and the only opening was at the 5 pm seating, I am glad it wasn’t booked. I suggest making sure you plan this in advance.

When I arrived I nearly passed the location by, there is a plaque next to the door but nothing else.

I walked in and explained I was there for the tea parlor, and was taken to my seat in a small parlor. There was already one group of four ladies seated, and I got to select which table I wanted from the remaining 4. After I was seated the remaining tables did fill with two pairs and one single person.

It was interesting to note that all the wait staff was male, and all the patrons were female.

The waiter explained the difference between a tea and a tisane infusion while presenting the tea menu to me, which was a pleasant surprise.

Each guest may select one tea, and the 5 courses are decided by the tea parlor and not listed anywhere.

I selected the Wood Dragon Oolong, which they said was steeped 5-7 minutes.

Throughout the five course meal the wait staff kept my tea filled, my water filled, and the courses coming. You will not leave hungry.

The parlor had an upscale, fancy restaurant, vibe. You didn’t need to know your tea, or tea preparation, to appreciate the lovely meal.

The first course was a butternut squash tart, topped with parmesan cheese and crème fresh. It was surprisingly spicy, but tasty.

Next my pot of tea arrived; it had already been properly steeped so no worry about removing leaves or timing it. I was offered cream, which I declined. The table already had granulated white sugar and candied ginger. The tea saucer had a cute sugar cube with frosting flower on top.

Second course was finger sandwiches; I could select one of each. I was offered seconds after I completed my sandwiches, I appreciated that but passed. Each sandwich had one predominating flavor, and sadly all other flavors were lost. Please note that they were tasty and filling.
-Smoked salmon and cream cheese on pumpernickel
-Turkey cranberry
-Egg salad
-Cucumber

I asked the waiter if I could purchase some wood dragon and Lord Mendel tea to take home and I was quoted 7$ each. I accepted.

Third course was scones, one plain and one cranberry, with raspberry preserves and Devonshire cream. They were nice and warm, sweet. I do think the cream tasted exactly like whipped butter and wonder if there was a mistake or if Devonshire cream just tasted like whipped butter.

There was sadly no refill offer on scones. I wasn’t going to accept as I wanted to be able to eat dessert, but as they say it’s the thought that counts.

Fourth course was a layered crepe cake filled with vanilla cream on a raspberry coolie(?). It was light, and creamy. The raspberry was minimal and completely overwhelmed by the vanilla.

Fifth course was a large strawberry dipped in Belgian chocolate, apricot pastry and a shortbread or butter cookie covered in sugar. I devoured the strawberry, it was perfectly ripe and delicious. The pastries were not fabulous, I ended up taking a nibble of each but didn’t bother to finish since I was stuffed.

The waiter came back and asked for my to go order a second time. When he came back with the packaged teas I was dismayed to find that they were bagged teas, and over ten dollars each for 4 teabags per bag. I still purchased them but in the future I will likely not bother to purchase the tea.

The five courses and tea were 35$ plus tax and 20% tip

My bill, with tip, came to 67$

I would recommend this as a nice place to enjoy good tea and food with friends, it's inexpensive and filling with great, attentive, service. If you are really a tea person though I would recommend you go elsewhere.

Front Door:


Table:




Wood Dragon Oolong:




First:


Second:


Third:



Fourth:


Fifth:


To Go Tea Packaging:
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