I realize this morning when I reviewed my initial World Tea Expo post I must have still been tea drunk.
My two-day adventure has been blended into one great experience.
So I will continue and include a few finds that were omitted yesterday.
We ended the previous evening having a wonderful dining experience; mind you I must have had my eyes closed during the meal, as I was so exhausted.
We decided that if we went back to nap before getting something to eat we would definitely miss the dinner bell.
Walking the promenades in Las Vegas is certainly visually stimulating. People of all ages, for the most part, looking for the ultimate quest, whatever that means to them. The extravagant stores one after another competing for a glance.
Walking back from whence you came can also be challenging. Elevated crosswalks seem to take you out of your way exposing you to more and more attractions. Needless to say although we could see the condo in the distance, there was no direct path and in our sleep deprived condition, got somewhat lost.
We finally arrived greeted by the bronze equine statues gracing the lobby and went directly to retire.
I was up at the crack of dawn, still operating on Eastern time, so off I went to get a morning brew. The selection, although more varied than most, offered the dreaded tea bag.
I made my choice and sauntered outside, grabbed a bench and proceeded to catch up with leafboxtea, lahikmajoe, the purrfect cup and Sir Devotea on twitter.
Did I mention that my trips are never without drama?
I noticed an email message from the airlines that stated in bold letters “Flight Cancellation Notice”. I read the information and yes it was true my evening flight had been canceled. I made a decision there and then not to go immediately into panic mode. Now, although I was thoroughly enjoying the Expo, I was not prepared to stay another day. I was annoyed that I would have to spend time making arrangements for transportation when today was my Buying Day!
On the phone for several hours, included dropped calls that resulted in my having to start with another agent each and every time, I finally got a new flight, whew!
Off to the Expo…upon entering I spied IHeartTeas sitting in the media room I, of course, went in for a morning hug and to discuss meeting up for dinner.
Highlights from the floor:
Bokumjari Co., LTD. a producer of fruit products based in Korea, had a very interesting fruit tea offering. I tried the citron tea and it was a delightful diversion from the “straight teas” I had been sampling. Somewhat sweet with an addition of pear to soften the tart citrus. I thought it might be a good offering for a children’s tea.
Wild Tea Qi Artisan, wild, ancient tree teas which are sustainably grown, winners of the 2011 Yunnan Government Gold Medal for their Ancient Phoenix Fermented Puer and Ancient Phoenix Raw Puer. I sampled two of their offerings the Ancient Phoenix Puer and Ancient Moonlight White from the Spring 2012 harvest. Both were pleasant and soothing. The Puer was unlike those I own where the terroir is most prominent. The packaging, in both breakaway bars and single disc servings, is convenient.
Jameson & Tailor Tea Pot Art This German based company had beautiful novelty designed teaware. What impressed me most was the glaze which was magnificent. A teapot collectors dream. I saw one that reminded me of Jackie, its design a pop art treasure.
Royal Tea Of Kenya I stopped here with one specific mission in mind, to meet Gongfu Girl. She had tweeted she would be helping to staff the booth and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to say hello. Our conversation was quick as the booth was very busy and potential customers were waiting.
Thistle Down Shop One of my early resources for tea cozies, I always make a point to stop and say hello. They have lovely patterned cozies and have added new travel sets to their product offerings. They are more expensive than most as the workmanship is impeccable the owner makes a point to say, ” We base our pay scale on the concept of a “Living Wage” which is always admirable.
Tea Mag Off to find another teatra.der needed a tea break hug. Stopped by to visit with TeaPages. Yes, warm feeling all around. There is always something special being in her company. We chatted for a bit and reaffirmed meeting up at the evening reception and possible dinner. I had chatted earlier with editor, Dan Bolton, the one person I missed from this esteemed crew was TeaMagTweets which was disappointing.
Tight Vac These canisters come in a host of sizes and creates an air tight vacuum seal which maintains freshness and prevents odor absorption. It is said to double the shelf life of bread and dry goods. I have yet to test the claims and will do a follow-up report at a later date.
Zealong I had heard so much about this tea since YaYa offered teatra.ders an opportunity to purchase some from his “private stash” last March. I waited too long to make a decision and was upset with myself when others wrote about how much they enjoyed the brew. I was elated to see them represented *my chance to score*. I sampled three of their four offerings Pure, Black, Dark and decided that
Revolution Tea I stopped by this booth to recount a finding I had made prior to attending the show. I was at my local nail salon and to my surprise on the counter was a tin of their product, an unusual sighting in my neighborhood. This prompted a bi-lingual conversation about tea and why my manicurist chose this particular product. Unfortunately the salespersons were not impressed with my story as I was not a potential buyer.
Hankook Tea I did not sample any tea at this booth as I became distracted by the simple design of their lovely teaware. The travel tea set was most impressive and I was so excited I had to place an order for one, no two. One for a friend who I knew would love to own it 🙂
Stash Tea Presented a colorful display of a South American caffeinated offering. Guayusa an herb from holly trees native to the Amazon Rainforest of Ecuador. It is said to have an earthy aroma and a a slightly sweet finish. I have yet to sample the brew and will post my findings in a future post.
Rishi Tea Treated to a lightly sweet ice tea herbal blend, I took the time to play catch up with a dear friend. We talked tea and celebrated all of the excitingly wonderful changes occurring in his life.
It always amazes me how tea brings people together in a special way, there is so much truth that immerses from the unfolding of the leaves.
Too soon the my show floor buying experience ended. The next stop to the Las Vegas Hilton for the Expos’ 10 year celebration party. I was joined by IHeartteas and Hubby we walked into the full ballroom and scoped out a place to sit. I could see in the distance my friend theteaenthusiastsscrapbook waving us over to her table where three seats were available.
The selection of appetizers were impressive and by this time I was in desperate need of sustenance, my belly filled with oceans of tea from the days samplings.
There were so many people I wanted to catch up with. One of my favorite couples James Norwood Pratt and his most charming wife sat a few tables away. I went over to pay my respects and was greeted warmly. Mr. Pratt never misses an opportunity to send regards to my husband as they enjoyed meeting a while back at The Meaning of Tea held event.
Shortly afterwards the award ceremonies began. Emotions abounded with the speeches given by George and Kim Jage recounting how the Expo began from a small idea and has grown connecting people from many different countries, backgrounds and palates, all centered around the leaf. There were also accolades for the staff that keeps the organization going daily. Then the roll call of a long list of supporters who had been there since the inception, the people who were there when I first started and were willing to help me find my way, I will always have a feeling of gratitude for their guidance and support.
Since I had to make a plane we left the gathering to go to dinner and ended up having a somewhat questionable Mexican offering at a restaurant in the Hilton. Being in company IHeartTeas and Ralph Carterll is a special event I enjoyed it so, thank you both again.
Dinner ended abruptly as I looked at my watch and realized I would just barely make it for my flight.
When I arrived at the airport I overheard a heated conversation the woman at the next counter was having with the ticketing agent. It went something like this, You must get me on the next flight, You canceled my original reservation, the agent remained calm and replied, At this time we are fully booked going to New York. Her reply, I’ve been working a show all day and did not have time to deal with this…
I mused *That could have been me* and was happy I took the time to take care of the flight situation earlier.
There are three additional products and two special events I attended that I will cover in future posts as they require a place of their own.
Over all, I am glad I was prompted to make the trip, it was well worth my sleep deprived condition.
I hope these posts have been enjoyable, I delight in sharing my tea trips with you all. I am looking forward to World Tea East, Philadelphia in October where I will be speaking, and seeing many of my tea friends again.
2012 Educational Conference
11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.