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Angelica Tea Room opens, offering classic cocktail experience

The Angelica Tea Room opens on Washington Street tonight, aiming to offer a classy Euro-centric take on the cocktail lounge.

The restaurant at 517 Washington St., fashioned by Jon Karel of Buffalo Proper and Harry Zemsky of Hydraulic Hearth, sets out to be a refined alternative to drink-and-drown places.

There's a list of classic cocktails ($10) and a small menu of "lighter fare," including preserved vegetables, seafood and meats ($3-16), and tea sandwiches ($4) with fillings like curried chicken salad, smoked salmon, and cucumber cream cheese.

Tea sandwiches, left are part of the restaurant's small food menu. (Angelica Tea Room)

The room has been thoroughly decorated, with snazzy wallpaper and a white stone top for the long bar.

The low-key approach will be reinforced by limiting the crowd to 50 to 60 for the 50-seat room. "Our goal is to provide the best hospitality possible, and we cannot do that if the bar is two or three deep," Zemsky explained.

The restaurant will be open 4 p.m. to midnight, Tuesday through Sunday. Phone: 259-9025.

Decorative elements include tiki-patterned wallpaper. (Angelica Tea Room)

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