On April 4th, Blu Cafe by Tavalon, the popular e-commerce premium tea purveyor officially opened their first US tea bar (in addition to 2 cafes in South Korea). But this ain't your average tea party. Some of the unique bevvies on the menu include tea sodas, which are house made tea syrups infused into soda water, with flavors such as peachy oolong, summer fruits, crimson punch, and jasmine dream. They even offer up tea floats, comprised of tea soda and tea-flavored froyo. Other unique creations include the Upper West Side Detox (NYC breakfast tea with Korean ginger slices), Breakfast Cereal Tea (ground Job's tears grains infused into hot frothy milk), and a Roiboos or coconut mate latte for the caffeine-crazy. Iced tea options are also available, with flavors including the MoTeajo (iced green tea with lemongrass, peppermint, or lime) and can be transformed into bubble tea for an additional charge.
Last Saturday, Joonbug's cup runneth over with coffee, tea, and juices; our hands and tummies filled with salted chocolate and flavored honey samples. It was a very good day.
Featuring such esteemed companies as Aroma, Tavalon, Peet's Coffee & Tea, and Honest Tea, this year's festival attracted hordes of people, all reaching for that tantalizing taste of some of the top beverage brands nationwide.
Competition brewed in the next room at the Ultimate Barista Challenge; before a panel of judges and an audience, contestants attempted to beat the clock while creating and stirring caffeinated concoctions. Two rooms over, lecturers discussed the origins of various teas, the tradition of Afternoon Tea, and the art of home roasting.