Our 6 Favorite Tea Services in Houston
There’s been a lot of news about the British royal family lately: Poor Charles is finally getting his crown, but no one wants to perform for him on his big day. The Prince and Princess of Wales have been caught almost holding hands (love is still alive and well!). Harry and Meghan are getting evicted from Frogmore Cottage. Prince Andrew.
If you, like us, enjoy sipping tea while discussing the tea, there are fortunately some pretty great restaurants and tea spots in Houston where you can get a full-service tea experience. Although we might not have quite as many places in Houston to experience a full tea service as they have across the pond (perhaps it’s a supply issue and we’re still recovering from throwing all of that tea into that harbor that one time), you’ll be surprised to know that Houston actually has a lot to offer in the area. From vegetarian afternoon tea experiences at Kiran’s to high tea at Hotel Granduca, we’re spilling the tea on our favorite tea services in Houston.
For a tea service experience that counts as an entire meal, Bistro Menil is one of your best options. The Montrose mainstay offers its afternoon tea service from Wednesday through Sunday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Priced at $65 (with a two-person minimum) the tea service includes an introductory glass of champagne or raspberry or lemon Italian soda and a starter of a cup of the soup du jour. Sandwiches and canapes include smoked Scottish salmon finger sandwiches, mini BLTs, crab cake bites, and savory chicken salad. For dessert, there’s chocolate mousse, lemon tarts, and vanilla creme brulee—a dessert collection well-curated enough to satisfy even the most discerning of de Menils.
Reservations should be made in advance through Open Table.
World-class Indian fine-dining restaurant Kiran’s has one of the most flavorful afternoon tea services in Houston. Offered every Saturday and Sunday at 1 p.m., the service includes three options: standard tea service, vegetarian tea service, and a children’s option. The standard tea service, priced at $65, includes options for bubbly as well as tea pairings for each course. Offerings include Darjeeling tea with wild mushrooms vol au vent, a six-sandwich strong course (including choice treats like colossal crab and Tandoori chicken) paired with chai, a scone course paired with Earl Grey, and petit fours paired with port. For the vegetarian tea service, also priced at $65, the sandwich course includes all veggie-centric options such as roasted beets, English cucumber, and eggplant. The children’s tea menu, priced at $35 and perfect for kiddos with discerning tastes, includes a choice of either hot chocolate or a milkshake, kid-friendly finger sandwiches, scones, and cookies and a cupcake.
Reservations should be made at least 24 hours in advance by calling (713) 960-8472 or by emailing [email protected]
New River Oaks District tea and brunch hot spot, Little Hen, has only been open for a few months, but it's already become such a favorite of the ladies who lunch crowd that you’ll leave smelling like Chanel No. 5 no matter how long you visit—think of it as an immersive brunch experience that you get to take home with you! While Little Hen’s brunch menu is chock-full of whimsical treats, like their famous rose petal pancakes, their afternoon tea service is where it’s at. The service, priced at $35 per person (with add ons for Prosecco and Champagne), includes a beautiful selection of petit fours and french macarons as well as a selection of mini sandwiches and scones. For tea, have your pick of a great house tea blend, chamomile, Earl Grey, English breakfast, jasmine cloud, green tea, or santana.
Reservations are not required but recommended and can be made on RESY.
McHugh Tea Room
Sometimes you want your afternoon tea to go, a convenient option at McHugh Tea in Bellaire. For $39 a person, the tea room offers a to-go tea service that includes three flavors of sandwiches, three desserts, and two flavors of scones. The service also includes one 2-ounce bag of loose leaf tea that you can take home with you to brew in your own (and what we assume is very beautiful) tea set. If you want to sit and stay a while, the McHugh Tea Room offers the same tea service in person. And if you’re looking to get a bit tipsy—but hopefully not enough to spill too much of the wrong kind of tea—there’s a tipsy tea service available ($54 per person) that comes with bottomless (yes, you read that right) mimosas, wine, or bubbles.
Reservations are required at least 24 hours in advance and can be made by calling (713) 218-6300.
Proper Rose Garden
For a casual, on-the-fly tea experience, look no further than Proper Rose Garden in Katy. The comfortable-yet-upscale spot specializes in Asian-European fusion desserts, brunch, and afternoon tea. The Proper Rose Garden tea service, priced at $59.95, comes with an assortment of goods that change daily, including pastries, sandwiches, a slice of cake, and your choice of tea pot. Tea options (added on separately for $7.25 a pot) includes Earl Grey, osmanthus, honey lemon black tea, toffee black tea, and more. But it’s in their milk where Proper Rose Garden really outshines the rest of the competition. Milk options here (which come with six options for sugar level) include rose, lavender, vintage cream, taro, almond, milo, coconut, matcha, and honeydew.
Reservations through Toast are recommended but not required.
The Granduca Tea Room
While Hotel Granduca sets the standard for Houston luxury hotel service, you may not know that it also sets the standard for high tea experiences in Houston. The swanky hotel, which features a design reminiscent of an Italian villa, has enough pomp in its tea service to have you feeling like a Medici long after your tea service has ended. The Granduca High Tea—Hotel Granduca’s classic tea service—is priced at $58 and includes tea from Dammann Frères, five savory tea sandwiches, four sweet tea sandwiches, scones, Italian mascarpone cream and preserves. Upgrades include the Italian Tea ($66) with one glass of Prosecco, the High Tea Cocktail ($64) with a mixologist cocktail, The Prosecco Zero with one glass of Prosecco zero ($70), the Italian Champagne Franciacorta ($76) with one glass of Franciacorta sparkling, the Nicolas Feuillatte ($79) with one glass of champagne, and the Champagne Lhuillier Brut Tradition ($89) with one glass of champagne. For kids, there’s the Bunny Tea ($33), which comes with the same baked goods but offers the option of tea or hot chocolate.
The Granduca Tea Room is open daily from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.; reservations are required at least 24 hours in advance and can be made by calling (713) 418-1000.