After enjoying dinner at Rojo y Blanca or drinks at Bar Centro at the SLS Hotel, you probably ogled the Patisserie's striking display of bonbons and cookies. But the Patisserie is worth a visit on its own, especially on Saturdays and Sundays for its recession-friendly afternoon tea (3 p.m. to 5 p.m., $25 per person).
Don't expect a stuffy hotel-lobby high tea. No matter where you sit--the furry pink throne, the communal high-top table, a sofa tucked into a corner--you'll get the SLS glitz-and-glam sensory overload, but it's not overwhelming: The space is the only area open before 6 p.m. so the atmosphere is more subdued, perfect for relaxing.
Choose from 10 different teas, including the Iron Goddess of Mercy oolong or the smooth SLS house blend, all perfectly matched for the first arrival of fluffy baby scones with edible flower-flecked raspberry jam and honey. Tradition stops there. Instead of smoked salmon or cucumber finger sandwiches you'll get delicate cones filled with dill creme fraiche and topped with salmon roe, cucumber bites with yogurt and tomato "caviar," and foie gras brioche. There are mini steamed buns topped with caviar and beet-goat cheese macarons (pictured) that melt on the tongue like magic; for sweets, saffron gum drops in an edible wrapper, green tea cookies or salted chocolates. If you're lucky, maybe they'll send some chocolate-covered Pop Rocks just for fun.
The Bazaar by Jose Andres, 465 S. La Cienega Blvd., Beverly Hills; 310-246-5555 or thebazaar.com
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