According to recent research, Philadelphia has over 510 places where one can enjoy a cup of tea. While there is an abundance of options, not all tea establishments offer the same quality.
In this article, we will explore the top 8 tea spots in the city. We won’t limit ourselves to traditional tea houses. We’ll also highlight regular cafes and even coffee houses where you can enjoy an exceptional cup of tea.
Located in Northern Liberties, a neighborhood reminiscent of New York City’s Greenwich Village, The Random Tea Room offers a diverse range of international teas. This establishment in Philadelphia emphasizes meticulous preparation, with teas brewed to order, hot, cold or carbonated.
Their diverse menu offers a wide selection of teas. The Masala Chai is particularly impressive due to its harmonious blend of spiciness, cardamom, and locally-sourced whole milk. Meanwhile, the Earl Grey Royale distinguishes itself with its indulgent and full-bodied flavor. If you prefer brewing your tea at home, the store provides a selection of loose tea and custom blended herbal infusions, including varieties such as For The Defense and Balmer Herbal Lemonade.
The atmosphere is understated yet welcoming, with seating both inside and an outdoor patio area. While some visitors come for quiet conversations, others immerse themselves in reading or board games, making The Random Tea Room a versatile space in the city.
- Has a wide variety of teas
- Friendly, helpful staff
- Cozy atmosphere/ambiance
- Good chai options
- Limited seating/small space
Location: 713 N 4th St, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Located in the heart of Philadelphia’s Chinatown, Prince Tea House is a sanctuary dedicated to offering authentic French teas, complemented by a curated assortment of handmade confections. This establishment is known for its commitment to providing teas of exceptional quality and uniqueness, emphasizing both taste and appearance. Their teas stand out not just for their rich flavors, but also for the adaptability of sweetness levels, allowing patrons to tailor their brew to their preferences.
Stepping inside, visitors are greeted by an elegant interior that effortlessly combines comfort with sophistication, making it an ideal spot for both solitary moments of reflection and lively catch-ups with friends or family. The menu is vast, showcasing teas like the popular mango green tea, aromatic rose milk tea, and the intriguing potted plant milk green tea, which exhibits a hint of lavender. While their teas are the highlight, Prince Tea House doesn’t stop there. They also offer a range of dishes and desserts, including delicacies like the purple yam Mille crepe cake and a variety of sandwiches.
Although Prince Tea House has garnered attention for its innovative use of technology, including QR code ordering, what truly defines the establishment is its unwavering dedication to quality. Whether you’re seeking a quiet afternoon of tea tasting or a unique culinary experience, Prince Tea House is a noteworthy destination in Philadelphia.
- Good ambiance/decor
- Convenient online ordering system
- Wide variety of teas
- Delicious desserts (especially crepe cakes)
- Parking can be difficult
- Some desserts are too sweet
- Slow/poor service at times
- Food quality can be inconsistent
Location: 203 N 9th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Located in Upper Darby, The Painted Tea Cup stands as a notable establishment for those who appreciate the tradition and nuance of tea culture. Established in 2004, it transitioned from its original storefront to its current Victorian House setting in 2009, bringing with it a sense of history and charm.
The establishment spans two levels, offering different atmospheres for guests. The ground floor Tea Room conducts its High Tea service between 11 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., where visitors can partake in a curated selection of teas, complemented by baked goods. It’s advisable to make a reservation and notify of any specific dietary requirements in advance. The second floor offers a quieter, more intimate sitting area for those wishing to savor their tea in peace.
The variety of teas on offer is diverse, with several unique blends available. They are often accompanied by dishes such as the chicken salad croissant and the house-special Red Pepper Jelly.
Additionally, the on-site Gift Shop, which operates from Tuesday to Saturday, provides a selection of items that are reflective of tea culture, ranging from tea pots and hand-poured soy candles to jewelry and handmade aprons.
For individuals seeking a space that marries history, ambiance, and the rich traditions of tea, The Painted Tea Cup offers a distinct experience. Whether you’re hosting a special event or simply desiring a quiet afternoon, this establishment provides a venue worth considering.
- Cozy, charming interior decor
- Friendly, attentive service
- Wide variety of tea options
- Delicious scones
- Good food quality overall
- Limited parking
- Lack of customization options for tea and food
Location: 220 S State Rd, Upper Darby, PA 19082
Located in the picturesque Eagle Village Shops, A Taste of Britain offers patrons an authentic British dining experience, having established its roots in 1991 by Marie Hope. Today, the cafe stands as a testament to its rich history and cherished traditions.
The menu at A Taste of Britain provides a broad selection of British specialties. Central to the offerings are the premium loose-leaf teas that beckon enthusiasts with their aromatic allure. For those seeking the quintessential British experience, the Full Afternoon Tea remains a highlight. Alongside, visitors can indulge in traditional British scones, pasties, sausage rolls, and shepherd’s pies, all prepared using Marie’s original recipes. Moreover, the cafe’s culinary range includes refreshing salads, flavorful sandwiches, and homemade soups.
The ambiance of the cafe complements its menu. The decor evokes a sense of calm, allowing guests to momentarily step away from the hustle of daily life. Additionally, for patrons with an appreciation for British culture, the attached store offers a variety of imported British groceries, sweets, and decorative items.
Located in Wayne’s Eagle Village Shops, A Taste of Britain remains steadfast in preserving and showcasing British culinary traditions, ensuring every visitor is enveloped in the warmth and charm that British hospitality has to offer.
- Good tea selection/variety
- Delicious scones
- Friendly/attentive service
- Long wait times/slow service
- Reservation issues
- Quality/freshness issues with food
Location: 503 W Lancaster Ave, Wayne, PA 19087
Nestled in Philadelphia’s bustling neighborhood, Ray’s Cafe & Teahouse has been an emblematic presence since 1989. A family-owned establishment, Ray’s offers a melding of rich culinary traditions, with a unique emphasis on its expansive range of teas and coffees.
The menu is reflective of its diverse influences, with the Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup standing out as a signature dish, renowned for its homemade authenticity and the personal touches it boasts. Their handmade dumplings, available in an array of flavors, and the Shrimp Rolls are delightful indulgences that patrons often rave about.
For those with a penchant for caffeine, Ray’s prides itself on its distinct coffee offerings. The café is one of the pioneering establishments in the art of Syphon Brew Coffee and is also recognized for having Japanese Sumiyaki Coffee Beans in its collection. With over 15 globally renowned coffee beans, including the Jamaican Blue Mountain and Yemen, coffee enthusiasts will appreciate the meticulous brewing processes, especially the Japanese style Cold Brew Ice Coffee, which undergoes a 12-14 hour slow drip.
While the interiors are intimately spaced, they are adorned with quaint decorative details that add to the cafe’s charm. The ambiance is more traditional and slightly divergent from typical contemporary cafes, emphasizing a quieter atmosphere where cell phones and laptops are discouraged, ensuring a more immersive culinary experience.
Ray’s Cafe & Teahouse, with its rich history, authentic menu, and artisanal beverages, remains a testament to its longstanding reputation in the heart of Philadelphia.
- Good coffee and tea options
- Tasty dumplings
- Flavorful Taiwanese beef noodle soup
- Small space with limited seating
- Slow service at busy times
- Expensive/high prices
Location: 141 N 9th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Located in the charming Rittenhouse neighborhood of Philadelphia, The Dandelion presents an ambiance reminiscent of an authentic English pub. With its rich, dark wood interiors, the establishment exudes a warm and welcoming atmosphere, making it a cozy destination for city dwellers and visitors alike.
One of the standout features of The Dandelion is its comprehensive tea menu, emphasizing a delightful afternoon tea experience. Patrons can indulge in a variety of tea flavors, paired perfectly with an assortment of sandwiches, pastries, and the particularly notable homemade scones, which come highly recommended. The establishment also offers a selection of dishes that resonate with British culinary traditions, from comforting shepherd’s pie to the rich and satisfying tandoori chicken. Those who lean towards unique tastes may also find interest in their creatively crafted menu items.
Beyond its food and beverages, The Dandelion takes pride in its captivating decor. The establishment boasts an inviting feel, with cozy booths, cushioned seating, and the occasional fireplace that adds to the allure of the place. The iconic logo, depicting a stylized lion, further accentuates its distinct identity.
For those who appreciate al fresco dining, the cafe provides outdoor seating, allowing guests to take in the city’s vibrant atmosphere. While The Dandelion strives to maintain a pristine environment, guests are advised to be mindful of the surroundings when choosing their seating.
In summary, The Dandelion is a well-regarded establishment in Philadelphia, offering a serene environment for those seeking a touch of British elegance amidst the urban landscape. Whether for tea, a hearty meal, or simply a respite from the bustle of city life, it stands as a worthy destination.
- Cozy, charming atmosphere with English pub decor
- Good service
- Tasty, high-quality food with British influences (fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, Sunday roast, etc.)
- Good beer and cocktail selection
- Some dishes can be on the small side for the price
- Afternoon tea sandwiches can be stale
- Reservation policy for large groups is strict
- Can be loud during busy times
- Prices are on the expensive side
Location: 124 S 18th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Located in the renowned Rittenhouse Hotel, the Mary Cassatt Tea Room offers a tranquil afternoon tea experience in Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square. With an ambiance that evokes both elegance and tranquility, guests can gaze upon a peaceful garden view while a live harpist provides a gentle musical backdrop, enhancing the experience.
The menu at the Mary Cassatt Tea Room is centered around a meticulously curated selection of teas, ranging from classic black and herbal infusions to exotic blends. While tea remains the star of the show, the accompanying food offerings maintain a high standard. Traditional afternoon tea sandwiches are crafted with care, paired with delicate scones and an array of petit desserts. Each item is designed to complement the tea, with flavors ranging from the savory depth of blue cheese and walnut to the lighter notes of egg salad accented with caviar.
The interior space, characterized by its tall ceilings, offers both indoor seating and a seasonal outdoor patio, ensuring that patrons can choose the setting most suitable for their relaxation. Service is attentive, aiming to ensure that each guest’s tea experience is personal and memorable.
While the Mary Cassatt Tea Room provides a luxurious setting and a notable menu, it remains rooted in the traditions of afternoon tea. Those seeking a serene escape in the heart of the city, a moment of reflection, or simply the comfort of a well-brewed cup, will find the tea room a fitting destination.
- Lovely/fancy atmosphere and ambiance
- Good tea selection
- Delicious food and treats
- Small portions
Location: 210 W Rittenhouse Sq, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Nestled in the heart of Doylestown, The Talking Teacup stands as a testament to the art of traditional tea service. With its seasonally inspired menu that rotates weekly, guests can indulge in a delightful array of scones, soups, tea sandwiches, and desserts, all freshly made using high-quality ingredients. Its ambiance, reflecting a warmly decorated setting, instantly transports patrons to an era where afternoon tea was a cherished ritual.
Distinguishing itself from typical teahouses, The Talking Teacup offers scheduled seatings, ensuring that guests are treated to hot scones and well-timed courses, allowing them to fully immerse themselves in the serenity of the tea experience. The café emphasizes the value of reservation to maintain its intimate setting.
The variety of teas is commendable, with some flavors being especially curated for special themed events held periodically at the teahouse. For instance, their Mad Hatter Tea Party, a nod to the whimsical world of Alice in Wonderland, introduced guests to an intriguing blend of black tea infused with chocolate. Such events often see the teahouse transformed with thematic decorations, enhancing the overall experience.
While the teas are undeniably the main attraction, their homemade soups have garnered admiration, with flavors like roasted pepper tomato bisque and broccoli cheddar being crowd favorites. The scones, served fresh and warm, perfectly complement the tea, making them a must-try for visitors.
The Talking Teacup’s philosophy, “Come as a stranger, leave as a friend,” is a testament to its aspiration to provide a memorable and cozy tea experience to everyone who steps through its doors. It’s a pleasant spot to retreat from the bustle and enjoy a timeless tradition.
- Delicious food (scones, tea, sandwiches, desserts)
- Cozy, charming atmosphere and decor
- Rudeness from staff/owner
- Small seating area
Location: 301 W Butler Ave, Doylestown, PA 18901