Best of Boston


2007 BEST Tea, House

Cha Fahn

Jamaica Plain

If the array of refined Asian-inspired nibbles doesn’t clue you in, the owners of this four-year-old restaurant will take pains to make clear that Cha Fahn is about much more than tea. But set aside the premium sake and the… read more»

2006 BEST Tea, Afternoon



For a modern Boston tea party, head to L’Espalier on a Saturday afternoon, when the Back Bay brownstone is filled with elegant ladies nibbling on pastries and canapés. We recommend Red Riding Hood’s Basket: savory tea sandwiches, melt-in-your-mouth scones with… read more»

2005 BEST Tea

Cha Fahn Tea

Jamaica Plain

The city’s recent tidal wave of boba teas, loose-leaf blends, and trendy teahouses has been difficult to wade through, but the calming sanctuary inside Jamaica Plain’s Cha Fahn feels like a stroll on a secluded beach. The teak-accented dining room… read more»

2002 BEST Tea



Given this town’s historically intense dedication to tea, you’d expect us to claim at least one intensely dedicated tea outpost. Well, we have two—each a Tealuxe branch. This subtly retro business can render a quick cup of takeout chai as… read more»

2001 BEST Tea

Tea-Tray in the Sky


Boston has long had a stormy relationship with tea, but this Alice in Wonderland-inspired joint puts all bad memories to rest with its 80-plus flavor selections. The menu offers authentic choices—black, green, white teas—and otherworldly flavors, including Russian Caravan and… read more»

1999 BEST Tea

Tea Tray in the Sky


This little cafe offers a welcome respite from Starbucks culture, offering everything from your standard Assam to more exotic blends, from scented and flavored teas to herbal infusions. For summer, try the iced ginger-and-lemongrass tea with one of Tea Tray’s… read more»

1998 BEST Tea, Afternoon

Bristol Lounge


Life should always pause around 4 p.m. so people can revive themselves with a cup of tea. Besides this genteel refreshment (or coffee, if you must), the Four Seasons Hotel serves the traditional three-tiered silver trays of dainty crustless-cucumber-and-smoked-salmon sandwiches,… read more»

1998 BEST Tea, House



Built for a rainy October day— or snowy February— or any day that needs a little sprucing. With Billie Holiday singing from the shadows and a cup of Rose Congou in hand, you belong to a more gracious decade. Traditionalists… read more»

1997 BEST Tea, House



A reinvention of the English tea salon, guaranteed to lure the true connoisseur. They offer almost 140 varieties, from the finest-grade Indian Darjeeling to Japanese green tea. The homemade pastries are also a treat: Lavender-scented shortbread goes with the English… read more»

1994 BEST Tea

Ace of Cups Teashop and Bakery

Brookline Village

A funky yet civilized place to sink into an overstuffed chair and enjoy a pot of tea and a light meal. Make reservations for the formal British-style afternoon tea, replete with scones, clotted cream, cakes, tarts, and finger sandwiches. read more»