I have to tell you about the lovely little spot I went to for afternoon tea at a couple of weeks ago – The Crosby Street Hotel. My work colleagues and I decided to throw one of our colleagues, M, an afternoon tea by way of a baby shower/ send off as she approaches her maternity leave!
The hotel is nestled right in the heart of SoHo (which, in NYC is short for South of Houston Street) on a quaint street brimming with trendy stores and independent retailers. Shamefully I haven’t spent all that much time yet exploring SoHo, but it’s definitely on my bucket list. I’m going to wait for the weather to warm up a bit, as there seems to be a ton of cute bars and restaurants with outside space.
Anyway, back to the afternoon tea!
I really loved the interior of The Crosby Street Hotel. A melting pot of juxtapositions, it felt eccentric yet luxurious and meshed clean, modern spaces with nods to times gone by with ease. I’m hoping to be back soon to check out more of the social areas and specifically the patio, which is meant to be fabulous for spring.
As we waited for staff to put the finishing touches on our table, we were invited to take a seat in the lobby – which actually felt less of a lobby and more of an art space. Loads of interesting things to catch your eye, including some of these kooky pieces of work….
And as we were shown to our table in the dining room, I spied my personal favourite, a very modern, arty salute to the Queen! I felt very at home!
As mentioned, the afternoon was our way of celebrating my colleague M’s impending motherhood. She’s absolutely glowing and is very nearly ready to pop! She is one of those women who clearly suit pregnancy really well, here she is looking cute as a button!
Here’s the rest of the team who came out to send M off in style! I’m super lucky to have great work colleagues – these guys are awesome!
The service at The Crosby Street Hotel was top notch. Formal but friendly, and very efficient – nothing was too much trouble. I have to say great service like this is what really differentiates restaurants and hotels for me. You would expect great service as standard but sadly, I’ve been disappointed many times and honestly feel as though the hospitality industry is somewhat lacking overall. So when I do find awesome staff like those here, I always make a point of letting them know how much we enjoyed the experience!
We looked at a few options for afternoon tea whilst arranging this baby shower. We choose The Crosby Street as the menu looked delicious, it was reasonably priced and offered a gluten free variation – which was helpful as we had a couple of GF eaters in our party.
Everyone oohed and ahhed over the beautiful afternoon service…
The china crockery set was beautiful but not too traditional or dowdy. I really loved the design, and again it’s the little touches like these make your experience all the more memorable!
As the only Brit in the group, I was called upon to talk everyone through an afternoon tea menu, make some recommendations and demonstrate how to use a tea strainer!
Whilst we waited for the food to appear, I recounted to my colleagues the two major afternoon tea related debates that could easily tear families apart back home!
- What is the correct pronunciation of the word ‘scone’ (should you rhyme it with ‘moan’ or ‘gone’)? AND
- Should you slather said scone with the clotted cream first and then the jam, OR jam first and then the cream?!
In case you’re interested, apparently the Queen pronounces ‘scone’ as it would rhyme with ‘gone’ and prefers her scones jam first, cream on top! I on the other hand can’t eat a scone unless it’s smothered with clotted cream first and dolloped with jam, preferably raspberry, on top! So there you go!
Luckily our tea arrived shortly after! And was definitely worth the short wait – take a look at this lovely lot!
I believe the afternoon tea menu changes seasonally but when we went we were treated to: a mini toad in the hole, coronation chicken sandwiches, smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwiches (with the crusts cut off, obviously!) and a mini steak and stilton pie. The sweet course included: a raspberry victoria sponge cake, a pistachio and cherry bakewell tart, a strawberry and rhubarb cheesecake and an eccles cake. I know its a bit odd, but I always prefer the savoury bites of an afternoon tea and I wasn’t disappointed here.
And of course the scones! My absolute favourite part of the tea! Warm out of the oven and just utterly delicious! A real taste of home!
I have to say I was really impressed with afternoon tea at The Crosby Street Hotel – the food was lovely, presentation great and the service a dream!
I’d happily return for another scone…..or two!