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“A modern twist on the perfect English afternoon tea”

Silver Tips Tea Room
Ranked #2 of 4 Coffee & Tea in Tarrytown
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American
Restaurant details
Reviewed December 9, 2011

Simply love this place. The food is great, the tea selection is large and the staff (and owner) are always very friendly.

It does not look like the typical tea room that tries to be like "Old England" with the mis-matched tea sets and old china. It's clean, bright and all the dinnerware matches! I think they put more effort into their food and less on trying to style themselves as an old tea room. It's actually pretty smart because most women don't have to force their husbands to go there because it doesn't look like an old lady's tea shop.

The food is always fresh. Clotted cream is made there. Try the afternoon tea. The olive (mediterranean) sandwich, Terry Chicken sandwich and ham and cheese (Balzac) are the best. And, the tea selection is great. LOVE the scones.

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1  Thank JudyMetroNYCarea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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80 - 84 of 86 reviews

Reviewed December 9, 2011

Their website states: "Every visit is a treat"...and "enjoy a scone with clotted cream." Apparently this is not meant for everyone. This is not a tea salon - it is a local coffee shop, with tea-themed decor which can be had from Home Goods, serving tea instead of coffee. I concur with a previous reviewer: "like tea at Denny's." Maybe even a bar - complete with under dressed staffer wearing a t-shirt bearing a crass double entendre. I should just accept that a lovely, indulgent, and relaxing tea can only be had in the city. I have never, ever been treated so rudely at any establishment in my entire life!!! Afternoon Tea is both a treat, and a tradition, which my 5 year old granddaughter and I have enjoyed regularly together since her infancy. Her tea-time manners are impeccable, as are her manners in general. She has, on multiple occasions visited such establishments in NYC as: the Plaza Hotel (and not for the children's tea); Tea & Sympathy; Kings Carriage House; and Sarabeth's - always receiving compliments on her decorum.

My daughter stumbled upon Silver Tips about a year ago. We had previously found it nice enough, considering it's distance from the city - not so with this recent visit! We made this trip at my granddaughter's request. As soon as we were seated things went horribly wrong. Yes, we arrived at 4:20pm. Yes, when I called ahead I was informed that "the kitchen closes at 4:30; and the restaurant closes at 5" - but we planned on a quick tea. When we arrived we were immediately escorted to seats. I thought we were welcome. While others were having their orders graciously taken, and were being served with a smile, my every request was met with visible annoyance from our server. My tea grew cold before I was able to get the attention of a different server to ask for the milk which should have been placed on the table. Water was never placed on the table, either.

Our server did finally re-appear after quite some time spent counting out money, only to place the check down in the center of the table in a somewhat brusque manner - informing us, absolutely unapologetically, that she needed to close out the register. I don't appreciate it when restaurant staffers lean across my granddaughter as if she is not an actual person. She quickly returned for payment.

I am petite, and can not easily see up the tower - so it was not until I prepared to eat my scone that I realized I'd been served creme fraiche. I have had creme fraiche before, but much prefer clotted cream. My daughter - who also prefers clotted cream - had already silently eaten part of her scone with the creme fraiche, not wanting to be bothered with our server's temperament. By the way, the creme fraiche was watery, and tangy to an unpleasant degree. I could not get anyone's attention. Finally, our original server came to finish settling our bill. I politely asked whether clotted cream was still available. I asked because I had heard her offer it to guests at the other tables - I had never been offered a choice. I have dined out frequently for all of my life; and what transpired next was something I have never before experienced during any dining experience in my half a century of living! With an exasperated look on her face, our server pulled up her sleeve, checked her watch, and through lips seemingly pursed in irritation mouthed out that they did have clotted cream. I politely asked if I it would be possible to have some. She disappeared to the back, returned, then held the clotted cream out informing me - in a normal speaking voice, and not at all discreetly - that it was $2.50. I rose up, and handed her cash for the hostage clotted cream...now being forced to eat my scone with hands that had just handled filthy cash. I had barely begun finally eating my scone, when she returned and informed us (not the party next to us, just us) that the restaurant was closing; and she asked (brusquely, once again) if we wanted our food wrapped up to go. It was 5:10pm. Yes - 10 minutes past closing. Perhaps we might have been out of there 10 minutes sooner had we received more attentive service, and not had to wait to get someone's attention for every little thing. That was it - I was done being insulted! I did something that I have never done before - I walked over and asked for the manager. Guess what? Our rude server was supposedly the manager!!! She asked me what the problem was. Seriously??? I told her that she had been visibly rude to me from the time that I first placed my order. Ha! What ever happened to the customer always being right?! Instead she very insistently showed me the menu, asserting that since it is offered on the menu I could have, and should have, just ordered it from the outset. I told her that I did not have their menu memorized, and only remembered having had the clotted cream their before. I've had clotted cream there before; and I had heard her offering others clotted cream - why not us?!

Her demeanor was dismissive, condescending, and absolutely unapologetic...until I informed her that I would be posting a review of my experience on the internet. That was the first time she attempted even a half-hearted apology...not for the way I was in fact treated, but for the way that I perceived things. She also tried to make a case with my daughter, insisting that she had indeed offered me clotted cream. My daughter and son-in-law concurred that she had been rude to me from the very first, and had made no such offer.

Even my granddaughter remarked (with horror) on the annoyance with which my every request was met. She is only 5...she just wanted to enjoy tea with Grandma. She left Silver Tips explaining to the other woman (not our server/manager) that she "used to like this place, but I don't like anyone being mean to my Grandma...I don't ever want to come here again." She is not a fresh-mouthed child. She was respectfully expressing her sadness. The woman said she hoped we'd be back, and tried to plead their case, stating that things were different when they stayed open till 6. Well, in that case, they should have a "last seating" time - and stick to it! I have never, ever been rushed out of a restaurant in such a rude fashion. Yes, I have been asked if I could quickly settle the check at the end of the day before...but have never been expected to take my things "to go"...NEVER! Especially not tea - how on earth do you take 3 still moderately full pots of tea, which you've paid for, "to go"??? I could have just gone to a bakery, and brewed tea at home...to be enjoyed on my own lovely service. The cake, by the way, was a sliver of the size of the slices we saw all around us - even though there was sufficient cake left when the orders were placed.

This was supposed to be a treat for my granddaughter, after what was, for her, a somewhat traumatic visit to the oral surgeon. Well - it did erase that memory for her. Instead it was replaced with the trauma of "the lady being mean and rude to Grandma!" It is one day later, and she still can't stop talking about it and getting weepy! Silver Tips - never, ever again!!!

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2  Thank WestchesterGrand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2011

The menu reads fine and the variety of teas and knowledge about them from our overworked and very sweet server was impressive. But the way in which afternoon tea is being presented here is sooo disappointing it was all we could talk about during our ladies lunch. When I think tea, I envision a real treat; lush and indulgent and they are not reaching that mark. The delicious tea took 25 minutes to reach our table because they are so seriously understaffed. We didn't even get drinking water, and when we asked hot and cold water was confused. The tea came without lemons or cream, we had to ask. Sugar was in cheap packets, not in pretty cubes or a sugar bowl. The two servers were not properly trained and kept running back behind the tea counter to serve one person at a time. They were frantic, taking and filling takeout orders during tea service!, and were sweaty and unattractively dressed in dirty tees and jeans. Ever heard of a tray or a teacart? Serving from the left? Or a blouse? When lunch was finally served, our smoked salmon tea sandwiches were quite delicious, but such a stingy quantity! The menu said they came with a mixed green salad which turned out to be 5-6 tiny leaves of soft lettuce , albeit in a delicious vinaigrette. I was angry at the minuscule portion size and felt really cheated, not pampered. On the other hand, the "warm homemade scones" we all ordered were hugely over sized. But they were not warm, had barely any fruit in them and the jam was definitely Smuckers strawberry served in a tiny plastic lidded container! Tacky! Not an indulgence! In a teashop you expect and deserve the finest homemade or local preserves, and everything should be stylishly presented. Sadly, there was not enough butter (served cold! in cheap cafeteria-style plastic and foil cubes), clotted cream (a tiny imported jar, not homemade) or plastic jam served with the scone to cover the entire thing. It gave off a really sad impression. Where were the silver dishes, chintz and doilies? The candied violets and iced petit fours? The beauty and graciousness of tea? Not here. The shop is overcrowded and ridiculously understaffed, and the tablecloths are a sad ugly 1980's style polyester, the chairs ugly and common. The decor is ugly with bad color choices (like an old Mexican restaurant crossed with a bad thrift store) not a tea shop. The adorable quilted tea cozies they put on our individuals pots to keep them warm were dirty and stained ! Yuk. I wanted to be tempted by desserts, but the glassed case looked spare and empty, and the handful of treats presented in it looked sad and lonely, not lush and tempting. We skipped sweets. Obviously a penny wise and pound foolish (inexperienced ) owner is cutting money corners to be cautious, but the result comes off so cheap, and skimpy. The place was packed! Invest in some real china and white linens, please! The atmosphere and presentation is so important at tea. Please turn off the blaring radio heavy metal and put on better, quieter music. They need to educate themselves. And the food is delicious; so why not serve a decent portion, please, of the best quality. I will try them again, and because they were nice and the food tasted ok (except for the jam), I will recommend. But I was not impressed. I really wanted to be. Boo hoo.

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3  Thank whatsitwerth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2011

Mother and I went to Silver Tips all three days of our stay for my 21st birthday. This place has a huge variety of exotic teas that I've never even heard of! The food is delicious and they made me a dish to accomadate my Vegan and corn-free dietary needs. On my birthday they had a woman who was giving tarot card readings (accurate too!) whom, I believe, gives tarot readings every other week.

I definitely recommend this place for fellow tea drinkers! And they offer gift/rewards cards too. I signed up for next time I go to Tarrytown!

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Thank Lauren3262
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2010

The Tarry Chicken sandwich is exquisite and the selection of high-end green teas is extraordinary. And the service is impeccable. What a find in Tarrytown these last ten years. So glad they expanded.

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Thank borninthebronx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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