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Reviews + Photos from nymag.com
Posted by anonymous on 04/09/2010
One waitress at lunchtime?! 3 people outside taking names for the waiting list though..... Scones are excellent, but service is a joke.
Posted by Chrissy on 07/13/2009
I currenlty live in NYC and wanted to take my visiting family members some place fun for lunch so I thought I'd give Alice another shot (regardless of the fact that my last visit to the East side location had been subpar). I was seated proptly by the one nice person in the joint, then waited 20 minutes just to get a glass of water even though the place was not busy. I then had to ask for a waitress 3 times before she finally came barging out of the kitchen seemingly angry that I had requested her attention at all. And of course the first words out of her mouth weren't "how can I help you" instead she actually asked me if I was in a hurry. Then as we placed our order I was told that we couldn't share the dish I was ordering - so not only was I taking up her precious time I was told that I would not be allowed to share the dish I was ordering and PAYING for. Then to make matters worse, she served our tea in dirty cups wich also lead to the realization that over half the silverware on our table had some kind of food particles stuck to them (one spoon was even stuck to the table). I canceled our order and walked out. Alice's is not worth the trouble especially when there are a million other places in the city to get a great scone.
Posted by Lisa Jeanne on 05/18/2009
Excellent food, Alice's S'mores are to die for, each location is as charming as the other (81st street is the smallest) but don't be in a rush. Service is a bit slow and not just because of the steeping tea.
Posted by NewYorkGal on 02/10/2009
I just got back from celebrating a girlfriend's birthday. It was a great experience and the quaint, personal was just ideal for a weeknight hen party. The food was fabulous - great scones, good tea, yummy cookies and delicious sandwiches - couldn't complain about these at all. Service, however, left a lot to be desired. I won't even repeat things that others have complained about and just mention one very odd and quirky thing that happened to us. So we were 7 girls, and one of us was delayed at work and joined late. We had been seated at a table for 6 and since the start, we had reminded our server several times over that we'd need another chair for a friend who was coming late. The said chair was never brought to the table, not even when our friend finally arrived and we had to go a request a spare one from a nearby table. Not just that, by the time this friend arrived, the rest of us had ordered 3 combos of their mad hatter servings. For 6 girls on a weeknight, this seemed like a LOT of food, and so we advised our friend to only order a beverage and she could easily eat from our vast array of sandwiches, cookies, scones, tarts, chocolate chip cake, mousse etc. However, the server seemed to take offence to the idea and kept pressuring our friend to order food by saying things like "Only tea? You don't want to order food?", "This food on the table was ordered by your friends - I still don't have your order", "This combo is good for 2 people, there are 6 here, you need to order for one more person". It took us a while to convince her that we really didn't want any more food. At the end, she quit but not before making eyes at us. We were surprised and shocked by her behavior. The place closes down at 8:00 and we were among the last ones to leave, and were almost nudged into leaving several times over by various members of their staff. We were out of doors by 8:15, and they weren't happy about it and expressed it. So yeah, I definitely can't say much for the service. The food was great though, and for that alone I will go again. It's a pity there aren't many tea houses in NYC - so when I find one, I gotta latch on.
Posted by Anonymous on 02/02/2009
Alice's tea cup looks friendly enough from the outside, but the ladies inside are anything but. I into Alice's Tea Cup for an early morning breakfast with my mother. We waited in the front counter area for about five minutes, while the staff carried on their personal conversations ignoring us entirely. I finally interrupted one of them and asked if we could be seated. The girl looked as if had asked her to climb mount everest. In the end, she begrudgingly led us to a table where we waited unattended for half an hour. To make a long story short, we eventually ordered were served a very average breakfast and got out of there as fast as we could. I don't usually post reviews, but i couldn't ignore this level of rudeness.
Posted by joyful visitor on 10/04/2008
I would HIGHLY recommend this place to anyone who wants a memorable time and enjoyable food while visiting New York City. If I lived there it's a place I'd choose to have my kids' birthday parties. Being a visitor, we really enjoyed pondering the vast tea menu, then choosing, of course, Alice's blend for our first visit. The scones were absolutely delicious! Service was wonderful, and it was certainly a treasured part of our recent visit to NYC. If you go, be sure to read about it, and choose a time when you won't have a long wait. We went about 3:00 in the afternoon and were seated immediately!
Posted by tealover on 09/16/2008
Don't get me wrong, I love love love Alice's. And I visit it at least 3 times a week. Tasty sandwiches and salads, delectable treats, great tea. That said, it is not perfect. And what is likely be the most noticeable "flaw" to anyone new to Alice's is the service. Now, to call them simply quirky, or even flighty, does not even begin to cover it. The service is downright atrocious. It is not at all uncommon to sit and wait for 15 -20 minutes before anyone returns to take your order. If you are the type of New Yorker who gets bent out of shape about inefficient service, Alice's probably isn't the place for you. For everyone else, it's worth a visit.