Login or Register
victorian

Rose Tree Cottage

 (46 reviews)

801 South Pasadena Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105, USA 626-793-3337 Website Owner?

Tea is served at a table with a view of English roses and California palms through a lace curtained window. Surrounded by lovely items from Britain - with the sound of clinking bone china cups and saucers - fragrance of hot scones and fresh roses - and soft tone of English music from a bygone era - close your eyes and you are in another time and place! We serve a traditional English style Full Afternoon Tea featuring a selection of finger sandwiches (including the favourite - Cucumber), freshly baked scones with lashings of Devon cream and our own delicious preserve. To complete the treat there's a selection of sweets, including the famous Rose Tree Cottage shortbread. During tea we serve you all the English Village Tea you can drink. All is served on fine Royal Doulton Bone China.

Recent reviews

    • Sinton Stranger

      

      Rose Tree Cottage is a unique place, transporting you to the Britain of literature and your fantasy home there. Mary and Edmund make you so quietly welcome and serve the best scone and tea you'll ever have.

    • Jane Zinn

      

      The picture of Rose Tree cottage is from their old location. They are now located at 801 S. Pasadena Ave and have been for the past 2 1/2 yrs. They are by far the best tea room and have the best service of all.

    • Larue

      

      They have moved no longer at this location.

    • Amy

      

      There are an amazing amount of tearooms in the city/town of Pasadena. I have visited five of them. By the far the best of them was The Rose Tree Cottage. It seems that they are the original tearoom in the town. We had a last minute reservation for Sunday and we were late getting there as we went to their old establishment. Teamap has the old address and it really needs to be changed.. its been two years. We got there and they were gracious about us being late. It was a set tea so there was nothing for us to do but sit back and let the tea party begin. Lots of delicious details and my teapot was filled constantly by charming young ladies. We chatted with the owners who were lovely. There is a gift shop that is filled with lots of fun British items and clothing form classic outfitters, Barbour. This tearoom is so classically British. It reminds me of many tea shops all over the UK which brings many happy memories for me now that I live in America. Frankly, I wouldn't bother with any of the other tearooms in Pasadena Cheeky I know but really all the others need to up their standards!

    • Jennifer

      

      The only reason that I put lacking for teas offered was that we were not given a choice of tea. I didn't know when I made the reservation that we would be having the Christmas tea, so the entire menu was pre arranged, including the tea, which was English Breakfast. The entire service was very well displayed and the atmosphere perfect. My husband and I were sat in a perfect seat for two brought over from England by the owners...an antique that dates back to the 1700s. It was simply amazing and I can't wait to bring my mom for a special tea afternoon!

    • Denise Locker

      

      You will feel like you're in England. Wonderful atmosphere, food, and service. A most!

    • rick

      

      i had a very nice tea at this establishment at the old address, and was delighted when they moved to a new location. i tried to make a reservation and could not believe how unaccommodating and lacking in politeness these proprietors had become. someone needs to inform the staff at rose tree garden-the monarchy is over, the queen no longer rules, america is no longer referred to as ' the colonies,' and to get the bloody stick out of their arse. this old-school anglican stuffiness is not going to fly in this day & age. keep the tea traditional, but loose to old fashion snobbery,

    • Barbara Field

      

      I found the staff, who may have been the proprietress, unbelievably rude. It is true we were perhaps under-dressed, but no call to treat us as sub-human.

    • Claudette Sarkissian

      

      I agree with the previous review writer, the place needs a good cleaning, the windows need to be opened once in a while, the food needs massive improvement and the tea needs to be served more often… a smile will help!! After our second cup, we were told that they have ran out of tea. We waited and waited, the tea must have been coming straight from UK…. It didn’t make it during our afternoon

    • Joan

      

      This tea room used to be great. It wust have changed owners because it is not the same and the staff is rude.

    • Ashley

      

      I is so dirty and crowded with clutter. I had a party here when I was 10 and loved it, it went way downhill. They are so ruse and disrespectful too!

    • L. Spencer

      

      Picture this… Pasadena, California. A charming Little cottage. Inside a cramped room full of Aga stoves, men clothing, soaps, books and dusty dishes. No open windows, no air, frightfully stuffy. Being greeted by an extremely rude woman simply because you are late exactly 5 minutes. A small confined table in the corner of a backroom. Dusty and dirty glass shelves. One kind of tea, no choice here. No teapot on the table, constantly have to beg the rude server who acts as if she is pouring liquid gold into your cup. Stale bread, with thin spreads of tasteless ingredients, not enough even with afternoon tea standards. Petite sweets that were so so. I must admit the scones are very good. Now here comes the shocker!! After being presented with a hefty check, we were soon asked to leave so that they can clean and set up for the next sitting. If this is your idea of lovely afternoon tea, be my guest. But if you are an aficionado afternoon tea drinker, look for another place, such as Mc Charles House. Lilac Spencer

    • Stephanie

      

      The host wore tails and everyone was dressed in traditional uniform. The food was great, but there is a pre-set menu. A lovely, but expensive experience.

    • Hannah Keller

      

      My step mom and I went to The rose tree cottage last summer. The tea was always hot and the food was mouth wattering. I espssialy like their scones. The service was spectacular and the people working there where friendly. I was told by the gentle man serving our tea that Julie Andrews had been there along with the qween of England. after eating me and my step mom looked around for Beatrix Potter stuff. I found a Petter rabbit charm that I liked and bought it along with some other books. The gentle man that was serving us also gave me a book about England. My experence at the Rose Tree Cottage was highly injoyable! I loved the cozey inviorment and highly incourage you to go there!

    • Mrs. Kerr

      

      I have been visiting The Rose Tree cottage for more years now than I care to acknowledge. The experience has always been a lovely one, even on the days there was no rain. It is a spot to take ones time and truly enjoy the pleasure of an afternoon tea. Time to make another reservation!

    • Anonymous

      

      I've been taking tea at Rose Tree since 1984. The food is the BEST. Scones are the BEST I've ever had. Very much like home made food.

    • cathy

      

      disgusting...bad service...

    • gillian

      

      I would have loved to try afternoon tea at Rose Tree Cottage, especially because I'd read it was one of the top 7 afternoon teas in Los Angeles. I called on Sunday, February 16th, to make a reservation for a party of 11 on Sunday, March 16th. I spoke to a woman and I was told that a group of that size would be considered a 'party' and that I would have to speak to Mary and that she wouldn't be in until Wednesday. I was mystified why someone would be able to make reservations for 2 people, but not for 11, but I thanked her and hung up. I called back today and spoke to a man who told me that reservations are made a month in advance and I said I called Sunday, which was a month in advance, and was told to call back today. He told me that I would need to speak to Mary, but that she would not be in until Monday as her father is ill. I am very sorry to hear this and hope everything goes well for her, but her staff are not very helpful in her absence. Then, he asked, 'Has anyone in your party been to the Rose Tree Cottage?' Innocently, I said, 'No.' He said, 'Oh, we require that at least one member of the party have tea here beforehand to make sure they like it.' My jaw dropped and I said, 'Really? Well, that would have been very helpful information to have when I first called on Sunday.' Oh, how I wish the Regent Beverly Wilshire would start doing afternoon tea again. The upshot is that I will probably never try afternoon tea at the Rose Tree Cottage because they are incompentent and unwelcoming.

    • Stephanie Anne Freeman

      

      Very English, cozy, and a great respite from the Southern California glitz and bustle. My family loves to spend a few happy hours drinking tea, munching finger sandwiches and chatting, The owners Mary and Edmund Fry are masters of hospitality: all graciousness and good manners, very polished. I enjoy the idiosyncrasies of the place -- the tiny parking lot, the crowded store, the variety of customers, all with different expectations and varying levels of sophistication, and of course, the genuine British cream tea spread, in all it's glory and splendor...

    • C.A.S.

      

      Where would tea in SoCal be without Rose Tree Cottage, the granddaddy of southland tea rooms to the best of my knowledge. I have not visited here as often as I'd like, but when I have, everything has been top-notch from the superb food to the friendly service. And last time I went there was a warm beef savory so outstanding still has me licking my lips. I wish I could remember what the heck it was! Al well, guess I'll just have to go back and find out. As far as I'm concerned, the Rose Tree offers a wonderful tea experience and is well worth the price

    • Kim

      

      I just love this tea house, not only is it unique, but the owners Mary and Edmond Fry are wonderful people. All the people that work there are also very friendly. I truly enjoy having tea there.

    • Shar

      

      We found the overall experience to be pleasant and had a good time. I have been to most of the tea rooms in Southern California and this was very similar to many of them in ambiance and food, yet different in that the owner was charming and formal in his attire. The service was very good. There were 3 young girls waiting on our tables and our teacups were never empty. The owner came around to check that everything was fine. The scones were delicious and sandwiches and fruit were just similar to other tea houses. We didn't have the cheese sandwiches that the other reviewers wrote about but we did have the delicious yorkshire pudding sandwich with beef, egg salad, salmon and cucumber. The only sandwich I didn't care for was the cucumber because it was slightly pickled. The tea was delicious and brewed well, black tea with milk. The 5 star hotel tea services are a different experience with exceptional food and service but which do not have the atmosphere of a cozy tea room. No one was rude or haughty but we were friendly to them and they were very nice to us.

    • Adam

      

      My girlfriend is quite the tea enthusiast, so we decided to try Rose Tree Cottage. That was a mistake. Not only was it more expensive than the four seasons resort in westlake (and nowhere near as good), but the owners were unbelievably rude. We were treated as if it were a great privilage for them to acknowledge us; suffice to say, the service was not good at all. Also, as my girlfriend put it, 'This place looks like someone's attic. Look at all the clutter!' The ambience was that of a neglected closet, with knick knacks strewn haphazardly all over the room. Tables are cramped together. Steer clear of this one. The Huntington is cheaper, in a better location, and of vastly superior quality. Worst, most expensive tea experience, ever.

    • rose wang

      

      i agree with the others. the servers were a bit snobby which, for the price you pay, should not be the case. food was so-so

    • Kim

      

      I've just finished reading all the previous reviews and I'm not sure what the negative reviewers were expecting. I've travelled to England for years and most places you get one choice of tea and just 'sandwiches' unless you go to one of those touristy places that puts on a show. My husband and I go to the Rose Tree Cottage for real English tea, real English sandwiches and the most wonderful scones we've ever eaten. I think the people who did not enjoy their experiences are better off going somewhere else. That will leave more space for those of us who love the Rose Tree Cottage.

    • June 4/1/07

      

      I am so glad negative reviews did not deter me from visiting this wonderful tea room. Another English women and I, together with an American friend, had tea today (Sunday). The service was the best I've ever had in any eating establishment anywhere. The setting was delightful. I arrived breakfastless at 1:00 p.m. and had trouble finishing all the delicious offerings - from mini yorkshire pudding with roast beef, through an assortment of finger sandwiches to two tasty desserts - and my tea cup was never empty. Super selection of gift items from England available (and purchased). Worth the drive and the money for a special occasion.

    • Devon

      

      I used to go here fairly often, as I really liked their cream tea, but got tired of being treated as if I'd come dressed as chimneysweep. The reviewers who were treated well must've shown up on the day the owners tried Prozac. There is a difference between English reserve and disdain, but the Rose Tree folk haven't quite figured it out yet. The last time I was there, they gave us the bum's rush so they could turn over the table. Not quite my idea of a relaxing tea experience, and I haven't been back since.

    • Malena

      

      I am truly amazed this place stays open. I can only assume out-of-towners who know no better -and people who enjoy S&M and being abused return to this 'tea house.' I have been to this tea house twice. My favorite event occured when my friend and I finished are sandwiches and the waiter replied 'Wow, you must have been hungry.' The complete disdain and rude manner in which the owners show people who are PAYING THEIR BILLS is truly disgusting. Seriously - pass this place up and go to the Huntington or the Gilded Rose Manor in Granada Hills. These people truly and honestly give Brits a bad name.

    • Tea Totaler

      

      Thanks for the PR piece Ms. Juli, but this place is dreadful. No way around it... Though I am English I found nothing enjoyable about the place. We were treated with barely-veiled distain.. and the tea, food just made things all the worse. We felt like we were being punished as we were seated in what must have been someone's tiny walk-in closet. No service to speak of... amazingly bad all the way around. A form of torture I wouldn't wish on anyone.

    • Madeline

      

      Pretentious, rude staff awaits you at the Rose Tree Cottage. If you are not to their liking they will seat you in the laundry room (where kids are supposed to be seated) so be prepared.

    • Juli

      

      We've tried every tea house we can find in Los Angeles and this one is hands down the best! Their scones are fantastic, a secret family recipe handed down for generations and everything was yummy, from the clotted cream & homemade jam to the tiered plates of sandwiches and desserts. The presentation is terrific, you are seated in a cozy cottage where every nook is full of wonderful English wares for sale and the Fry's lifetime mementos and photographs from their safaris to Africa! Their house tea is grown there and one can even go on safari with them or to the British Isles on their annual trips. The best part of tea at this setting is meeting the Fry's who are a lovely couple and have marvelous stories to tell if they have a moment to spare with you...a difficult thing for busy professionals that own & operate the best teahouse in teadom!

    • Erika

      

      This place used to be a true English gem…not anymore. My last visit, the tea was lukewarm and not at all brewed properly. The sandwiches were tasteless and the service was terrible. I found the small tearoom extremely crowded with clothing, hats and an oven on display (yes an oven) which are for sell. Not to mention the dust and dirt that covered all the shelves and the settings. I had to get out before their so called “tea ceremony” was over to get some air…Oh, yes I forgot to mention the place was warm, no air conditioning and not a single window was open. Lastly, the price…is extremely expensive for what is offered. We paid $60.00 for two.

    • Lulu VM

      

      My review of this tearoom : Atmosphere : Very good Service : Good Fare : For $27.50 per person (there were 5 in our party on one table), this is what each person got to eat from the tiered tray : 1 piece small Yorshire pudding with horseradish cream and roast beef, maybe 2 cucumber sandwich, 2 egg salad and tomato, 1 smoked salmon, 1 cheese sandwich (I forgot the variety), sweet green and red grapes (for fillers). The savories is followed by 1 scone with red jam and devonshire cream (this cream has barely the thickness and flavor of real clotted cream and has the texture of whipped cream. Are they cutting corners here!!??). Afterwards, 1 square housemade shortbread cookie and 1 small 1.5 x 1.5 inch sticky toffee pudding. There is no choice of tea (I think they only serve one kind, PG Tips?? or Yorkshire Gold). The server comes around and constantly fills your cup with fresh tea. That is pretty much it. For the fare, it is overpriced, and that is not including the 15% gratuity. Would I come back : Maybe, just to browse and shop at their incredibly stocked store and see who other celebrities patronizes the place, but not for the food (which I believe should be priced in the $16-$20 range only).

    • jane

      

      I was extremely unsatisfied upon visiting the Rose Tree tea house. Upon arriving we were not given menus or choice of sandwiches or tea types. The room was tiny and had potential to be really cute but is decorated messily. There was even a fly buzzing around. The sandwiches were mediocre, the cucumber was probably the worst one. The cheese and tomato sandwich looked like it had nacho cheese in it, disgusting. The fruit that it came with, grapes, were not even washed! The scones came and ours were 2 different colors and didnt even taste that great. Also, the prices were horrendous!!! It cost 59 dollars in the end for 2 people. Definitely will never go back. How do you make a tea like that cost 59 dollars? Definitely a rip off. Don't go, save your money.

    • Sue

      

      Took my mother & friend to Rose Tree last weekend, our first visit. We loved it, very friendly staff & what a wonderful atomsphere! Very pricey, but I would go again, for a special occasion.

    • Jerri A.

      

      Sorry, spent time in England and was never traeted nearly as shabbily as we were here! Maybe time for the Fry folks to go back to mother England. There are so many authentic english tea houses & shops now, someone really should quit resting on the Queen's laurels and get their act together... Just absurd behavior.

    • Marsha

      

      RUDE! RUDE! RUDE! RUDE! I will NEVER go back to this tea room. The staff is horrible and the food is not worthy of their high prices!

    • Christina Hamlett

      

      In the distance, the 1st Movement of Bach’s Brandenberg Concerto #3 underscores the elegant ambiance of the experience that is about to unfold. There are no cellphones, no noisy conversations to compete with the occasional glance of silver spoons against the interior of Royal Daulton china cups. Seated nearby, an impeccably dressed older lady leaned in to her younger companion to quietly remark, “This is the way things used to be.” Across the table from me, my husband added his own observation. “This is also the way it should be.” The Queen of England herself would feel at home here. Like ourselves, she’d probably soon forget she was in Pasadena at all, much less that the nearest neighbors were two supermarkets and the requisite Starbucks-on-every-corner. At Rose Tree Cottage—the city’s original and most enduring tea room—proprietors Mary and Edmund Fry have been serving up stylishness and scones for nearly three decades. L.A. Magazine, Victoria and U.S.A. Today have sung the shop’s praises; Restaurant Guild International enthusiastically awarded it five stars in its recognition of America’s most celebrated tea rooms. Everything in the shop, our gracious host explains, is either English, Welsh, Irish or Scottish. The hand-crafted chairs are English yew and elmwood. The china from which we sip our tea is “Blossom Time,” a pattern which we are informed has been discontinued. It’s impossible not to be caught up in the charming cadence of Edmund’s London accent. “We’re in an age,” he says with unabashed candor, “when people are so used to drinking out of Styrofoam cups, using paper napkins and eating giant fistfuls of food with their hands that they eventually end up slopping all over their shoes.” If the patrons who have posted negative want to go somewhere else with their cell phones, noisy conversations, unruly children and bad manners, there's no shortage of other establishments that can accommodate them. Rose Tree Cottage and Edmund and Mary are simply the best when it comes to upper-crust service.

    • Beth

      

      While, yes, the tea option is limited, I don't mind at this tea house because everything else is delicious. My sisters and mother and I first enjoyed tea here 6 years ago. We enjoyed talking with Edmond about the variety of people he had served, and their scones were wonderful. The perfect size, fluffy, and the devon is wonderful. I have returned to the Rose Tree several times since and hope that any tea lover will give it a try.

    • -meg-

      

      cranky staff in claustrophobic setting.

    • Margaret Ferris

      

      I took my daughter (5) to the Rose Tree Cottage as a special treat. I'm fond of tea rooms, and have visited many in the states, the UK and Ireland. I was shocked by how rude the owner, Mr. Fye, was. (It was almost like a skit on the BBC about a grumpy shop owner). We arrived a little before one o'clock, when they were to open. Opening the screen door only 6 inches, he curtly told me that they opened at one and certainly hoped that I had a reservation. He also made it clear that he would rather not have young children in the shop. We left. And won't return. I'm fortunate. I'm a regular at the Bristish Emporium in Upland, and always have a lovely time. I had hoped to have a special place in Pasadena as well, but it certainly won't be Rose Tree Cottage.

    • Mary

      

      The worst and the most expensive tea house I have ever been. They only offered one type of tea, the servers were rude and inpatient, and the decors blah.... Never, to return to this tea house, and I highly recommend others to go else where and drop by two tea house for the price of one time at this place.

    • Margaret

      

      My friend and I were very happy with the food and service at the Rose Tree Cottage. The establishment is very cozy and we were impressed with the quality of food. The yorkshire pudding, sandwiches, scones and petit fours were delicious. We are going to definitely come here again.

    • Lucille

      

      I am an avid tea room patron. I have thoroughly enjoyed tea at: the Westgate Hotel, Aubrey Rose Tea Room, Tea House in Los Rios, Julian Tea Room, Hotel del Coronado, and Tea Upon Chatsworth. I strongly encourage the owners of the Rose Tree cottage to try the above establishments and see what a TRULY CHARMING tea can be. A pleasant, enjoyable tea provides: a VARIETY of teas; unique, beautifully presented foods; a table big enough to easily accomodate dishes without feeling cramped; and a relaxing atmosphere for patrons to enjoy each others company. The Rose Tree Cottage provides none of the above. Our table was ridiculously too small to accomodate 3 people, it looked out on a back fence with trash, the food was plopped on the serving plates, and the petit fours were far from unique. I have purchased the same petit fours 'on line' from Divine Delights. I like animals, but the presence of the cat walking through the tea room, and being picked up by a waitress, was not appreciated. The cramped rooms filled with knick-knacks for sale was not condusive to a relaxed atmosphere. We could not walk easily through the place because of all the STUFF for sale. This tea room has possibilities, but only after the owners make changes to meet the needs of their customers rather than themselves.

    • Bernadette Petrotta

      

      I love enjoying tea at Rose Tree Cottage. Edmond and Mary are two of the loveliest people I have ever met. They welcome me and my husband with such dignity, grace, and warm affection. Everytime I enter this beautiful English shop, I am surrounded by the fragrance of English tea and beautiful teapots made in England. I purchase jam, scones, lemon curd, and many other tea accoutrements. And lastly, what would an English teahouse be without an independent cat sitting on a chair as you walk into the shop. You can't help but fall in love with everything!

    • Elaine

      

      My friend and I stopped in to have dessert and tea. The butler served us our tea but no choices were asked. We received camomile tea, not my favorite. So I asked him for english breakfast tea instead, he seemed a bit put out by this. The dessert was ok but the cheerful service was lacking. I love visiting tea rooms and dont mind paying the price, but when you are not being treated graciously by the owners its time to hang up the tea towel as proprieters. They need to take note of their actions before they are serving to an empty house!!!!