The Novotel Paris Les Halles afternoon tea is a newcomer on the Parisian scene. Let’s see how the “T Time du Jardin privé” fares against the competition:
The Setting ★★★★☆
The Novotel Paris Les Halles is a four-star hotel located in the eponymous neighbourhood, near the Châtelet station.
The hotel interior is modern and filled with natural light. The lobby is decorated with beautiful white orchids and murals by artists Mel & Kio.
The T Time is served in the Jardin Privé but I assume it’s possible to have it indoors, though the afternoon tea would lose much of its appeal…
The Jardin Privé ★★★★☆
While it’s not as gorgeous as the Bristol Paris Jardin Français, the Novotel Paris Les Halles inner courtyard garden is peaceful and relaxing.
I suggest you grab a table on the right side, I love hearing the water flow when I’m sipping a cup of tea.
The Tea & Beverage Selection ★★★☆☆
The beverage offer is comprised of 14 teas and infusions. The green teas are sourced from Mina (an excellent though relatively unknown supplier), while the black teas and infusions are sourced from Mariages Frères. It’s a pity that there are no oolong or white teas on offer but the Novotel Paris Les Halles is a newcomer on the afternoon tea scene so I’ll be more indulgent than usual.
I love the self-service detox water ♥ : it’s perfect for this abnormally hot summer. If you fancy a bit of bubbly, you may order a glass of Laurent Perrier Champagne for 12€.
I’m normally very keen on the Mariages Frères Marco Polo tea but I suggest you go with the Sencha Green Tea from Mina: it’s excellent and loose-leaf, while the Mariages Frères teas are served in tea bags. The Darjeeling Himalaya was not strong enough, as the tea bg was too small for an entire teapot. ..
I had a bit of a scare with an aging and/or poor quality teapot when the handle stayed in my hand while tea teapot fell back on the table (luckily nothing bad happened…).
Choice of classic teas: 14 (4 blacks, 6 greens, 4 infusions)
Brewing method: At the table; in a cast-iron teapot containing a removable tea bag (Mariage Frères) or a tea strainer (Mina teas)
One choice per person; Price for an extra teapot: 7€
The Sweets and Madeleines ★★★★☆
Every afternoon tea (préface, découverte ou signature) comes with cakes & sweets designed by pastry chef Quentin Lechat:
- Chocolate and hazelnut tart
- Flan ♥
- Strawberry tart
- Hazelnuts Financiers
- Buckwheat and chestnut honey Madeleines
The cakes are quite run-of-the-mill but they’re also tasty: the flan is perfect and the chocolate-hazelnut tart is deliciously bitter.
You may order an entire flan in advance (17€) and Madeleines (2€ for 3) to take home
The Pastries and Desserts ★★★★☆
The “Découverte” and “Signature” let you choose one of five pastries: Strawberry, Apple, Raspberry, Chocolate and Hazelnut. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to order any of these cakes à-la-carte and I was only able to try the Strawberry and the Hazenbut (pictures below).
- Strawberry: Strawberry-white chocolate mousse with sage jelly; strawberry water, Kappa, white chocolate and Amaretto coating ♥
- Hazelnut: Praline-hazelnut crémeux, garnished with a nutty chou
Allow me to recommend the Strawberry, it’s light and refreshing: basically perfect for a sunny afternoon.
The “Signature” afternoon tea is the most complete offer (though still deprived of savouries) and comes with an extra dessert. We had an “all-chocolate cake” with a chocolate ice cream (first picture below). Nicely presented but forgettable.
The Service ★★★☆☆
The staff is efficient and pleasant, though forgetful this and there. Special thanks to Noah who took great care of us 🙂
Quite a bad experience when booking due to a capricious website.
Conclusion and Overall Mark ★★★☆☆
The Novotel Paris Les Halles afternoon tea in the Jardin Privé is a safe bet a beautiful summer day. The setting is great and the sweets are tasty, all for an affordable price (21 to 35€). I’d say it’s quite good but not exceptional either.
Careful though, this “T Time” is 100% sweet and scone free: it’s more of a French goûter than an English afternoon tea.
+: Great location
+: The Jardin Privé
+: The Mina green teas
+: Tasty sweets
+: Affordable afternoon tea (21€ – 35€)
-: Good weather only
-: Limited tea offer
-: No savouries or scones
-: Can’t order cakes à la carte
-: Difficult booking system
Phone number: +33 1 42 21 31 31
Address: 8 Place Marguerite de Navarre, 75001 Paris, France