Betty's Cafe Tea Rooms

6-8 St Helens Square, York, YO1 8QP Directions

Tel 01904 659142

Reviews

A must visit

5
Both the shop and the tea rooms are a must visit. You can spend a fortune in here but it is worth it. The shop has lots of goodies like fantastic cakes, sweets, buns, all very unusual and very yummy..
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Bettys

5
Yes, it's ridiculously expensive. If you just want a quick cup of coffee, there are many other coffee shops in York that will sort you out. However, if you want a long, leisurely cup of tea with the traditional sandwiches (crusts cut off, of course) and cakes, then Bettys is the place for you! I went for afternoon tea with a large group of friends, and it was the perfect place. We put on our pretty dresses, and very much enjoyed the whole experience. The food was wonderful - I had open-topped sandwiches that had considerably more filling than bread, the scones were fresh and came with plenty of jam and clotted cream, and delicious cakes which included a really yummy raspberry tart. We sat upstairs which was really light and airy, and we didn't feel like we were in a goldfish bowl at all. Someone was playing the piano at the end of the room, it took us a little while before we realised that they were playing Disney songs and songs from musicals! It made us smile, and we all thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
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An over rated museum

1
If you are harking for a bit of history in our historical city, then join the queues for Betty's; you'll be able to sample all that was bad about British Tea Rooms from around the early '70s; rude staff, tired decor and over rated over priced food. On the other hand, if you're after a good cup of coffee with pleasant service without the standing around to get in then go to one of the many good quality cafés that have opened since this relic. To say Betty's is trading on the past would be an understatment.

We went along recently when friends visited and wanted to do the tourist thing. The waitress could have passed for one from the old communist eastern block she was that rude. The scones were as dry as straw and the order didn't arrive all at the same time. To cap it all, my wife scalded her fingers when handed her plate which was (unexpectedly for a plate containing a scone) red hot. Did Comrade Waitress apologise, don't be daft.

In summary, in case you hadn't guessed, do yourself a favour and visit somewhere else.
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Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms

1
Sorry all, but Betty's is over rated and over priced. As other reviewers have said, there are better places in York. When I was a kid in the 60's, Afternoon Tea with the Aunts was excruciating!! But don't let me put you off, join the queue and sample the fayre.
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Mmmmmmm....

5
Bettys is very old fashioned, but at the same time it is lovely and quaint and unmistakably English. Not for nothing is it the most popular tea room in York. There is a high percentage of frills in the dining room, particularly upstairs, but both upstairs and downstairs rooms are nice, although rather different. A first time visiter should definately try to get a seat upstairs, even though the queue will be longer, because it is light and airy and exactly what a tea room should be like, plus tables by the window provide an excellent location for people-watching. Downstairs it is darker but much roomier, and feels a bit more private and restaurant-like. You can usually get seated a bit sooner if you don't mind being downstairs.
As for the food, it's delicious! Make sure you save room for a desert, although it can be difficult with the very generous portions on offer, because it is the cakes that this tea-room really excells at. As I do not drink hot drinks, I am afraid I cannot comment on the coffee and tea, but I am assured by my tea- drinking friends it is as good as one might expect from such a well known establishment.
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