A Beatrix Potter-inspired tea party in New York

I love good food, beautiful surroundings and afternoon tea. I also adore Beatrix Potter‘s children’s books and have since childhood.

I was thrilled when those four things converged in one exquisite experience during a recent business trip to the Big Apple.

We had a few hours to spare before our flight home, so my colleagues and I looked for an interesting spot nearby for a late lunch. That’s how we discovered the delightful café inside the magnificent and marvelous Morgan Library & Museum just a short walk from the Empire State Building in midtown Manhattan.

The bright, spacious Morgan Café is open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday from 11 am to 4 pm, and Friday from 11am to 6:30 pm. It’s located in a glass-enclosed central court designed to evoke European alfresco dining. The menu includes salads, sandwiches and other entrees, as well as appetizers and desserts.

We did not pay for entry into the 100-year-old museum and library, as we didn’t have time for much more than lunch. However, we saw enough of the beautiful building to make me add it to our to-do list next time we’re in New York.

Our group ordered several different entrees ranging from salads to burgers; we also got the afternoon tea service for two to share among us. I ordered the vegetarian tasting plate inspired by Beatrix Potter entitled “Ode to Mr. McGregor’s Garden.” It included chilled minted pea soup; rainbow mini crudite with hummus; a tiny cabbage, leek and potato quiche and a mini Mrs. McGregor’s Blackberry pie adorned with edible glitter. It was all a feast for both the eyes and mouth. Every little bite was absolutely gorgeous – pure magic!

The afternoon tea service was also perfectly wonderful, with tiny sandwiches and sweet treats plated on a triple-tier stand just like we enjoyed in London. Overall, the food at Morgan Cafe was outstanding and the presentation was out of this world. We had a fabulous lunch and enjoyed every morsel before stopping in at the gorgeous little museum store for some souvenir shopping before flying home.

I’ve enjoyed wonderful afternoon tea experiences in London and Columbus. Now, I can add NYC to the list of my most memorable and beautiful tea service adventures.

I honestly didn’t think the Sanderson Hotel’s super fancy Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea we experienced in London would ever be topped. I’m delighted to report that the Morgan Cafe’s Beatrix Potter tasting plate and afternoon tea were every bit as inspired and magical.

If you’re ever in New York and looking for a beautiful place to while away an afternoon, I highly recommend the historic and beautiful Morgan Library & Museum – and especially afternoon tea in their lovely cafe. It was the perfect close to our successful business trip to NYC.

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About the author

Proud and loving midlife mama. Lucky and devoted wife. Dog, cat and snake mom. Travel nut. Natural born writer. PR and social media pro by day - tattoo doula by night.

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