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Cheers to Happy Holiday Teas in Chicago

The Peninsula Chicago

Afternoon tea is a long-standing tradition that asks us all to slow down, take a break, and just enjoy the day. Whether you sip on a cup on your own in a bustling hotel, or carve out time to spend with family around a cozy table, the most popular time to indulge in afternoon tea is during the holiday season. And, truthfully, this time of year is when we all need it most. In the craziness of the last few days of the year, it’s important now more than ever to take a step back and take a breath. Take an afternoon “off” with tea time at one of these Chicago spots…

The Lobby at The Peninsula Chicago {108 East Superior Street, Chicago; 312.337.2888}: Though The Lobby is open for meals throughout the day, Afternoon Tea is the hottest ticket. With rich seasonal flavors, the sweet and savory bites served alongside The Peninsula’s selection of teas are not to be missed. This is the perfect spot for out-of-town guests or to treat your family!

Bittersweet Pastry and Cafe

Bittersweet Pastry Shop and Cafe {1114 West Belmont Avenue, Chicago; 773.929.1100}: For a more casual afternoon tea experience, Bittersweet Pastry’s Cafe has delightful holiday treats and eats, plus a wide range of tea offerings that change seasonally. If you want something extra sweet, they also have signature hot chocolates, including the delicious Hot Chocolate Cafe Mocha.

The Pavilion at The Langham, Chicago {330 North Wabash Avenue, Chicago; 312.923.9988}: High above the hustle and bustle of Michigan Avenue, you can enjoy a throwback to the afternoon teas of old, thanks to the The Langham Afternoon Tea with Wedgwood. Recalling the tradition from their original hotel, The Langham, London, Chicago’s tea is traditional and delicious, perfect for a girls’ afternoon. Afternoon Tea with Wedgwood includes proprietary Langham teas, a wide range of bites, and even live music playing Friday through Sunday.

The Cafe

The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago {At Water Tower Place, 160 East Pearson Street, Chicago; 312.266.1000}: Want to escape the craziness of holiday shopping? Slip away to The Cafe at The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago for a cup of tea or coffee! Right alongside their famed restaurant, Torali, the stunning views from The Cafe are what truly make this spot unique.

Vanille Patisserie {multiple locations}: Take a mini-trip to Paris with Vanille’s afternoon teas, complete with signature pastries and finger sandwiches, as well as Benjamin’s Tea. If you are heading to their Lincoln Park location with a group of at least six guests, you can even reserve their Vanille Salon for an extra special experience!

The Drake Hotel

Palm Court at The Drake Hotel {140 East Walton Place, Chicago; 312.787.2200}: Few holiday traditions are more long-lasting in Chicago than afternoon tea at The Drake. They have been serving tea for nearly a century, with The Queen of England and Princess Diana as past guests, and create a truly unique dining experience. Taste 17 unique tea blends as well as three tiered tea trays filled with an arrangement of sweet and savory bites. Perfect for classic Christmas-lovers who appreciate tradition.

By Kaleigh Glaza | Online Editor