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Best Tea House 

The French Bakery

What makes a great tea house? Great tea, of course. But also, something extra. In the case of the French Bakery in Lafayette, that something extra is a killer selection of more than a dozen fresh-baked pastries, from a galette a l'orange to a tiramisu to a hazelnut croquant that will make you weep (imagine a cylinder of creamy milk chocolate injected with pralines and nuts). The range of tea selections is likewise superb and staggering: dozens of flavorful black teas and soothing herbal tisanes (notably, organic Rooibos, or red teas) in the $3 to $6 per pot range, premium Mariage Frères teas that range from $6 to $9 a pot, and the pricey Tea Forte for $3 a cup. (Surprise: It's worth it.) Rounding out the experience is a picture-perfect decor (yes, it's girly, with fine china, real tablecloths, and the usual accoutrements) and classic "high" teas from $12.50 to $27 per person that range from just scones to platters laden with scones, pastries, savories, tea sandwiches, and champagne. The standard lunch menu is a solid selection of salads and tea-house sandwiches (croque gourmand, turkey focaccia, etc.) Brace yourself for a dented wallet; the tea experience for two can easily run $60. But frankly, Scarlett, you won't regret it.


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