Today was the Midwest Tea Festival. This was the first year that I went. I learned about it sometime last year, but it was AFTER it had occurred, so I decided that this year, I had to at least check it out.
I also decided this would be an opportunity to dress in lolita clothes.
I expected to be the only one wearing lolita clothes, but there were others! There were at least 2 other girls in lolita coordinates, and 1 woman in a victorian style-outfit that was almost steampunk. Also, several people told me they loved my outfit, so that was pretty encouraging.
I registered for the event online a few months ago, so I was able to get a goodie bag with the porcelain tasting cup.
Goodie bad included several tea samples. Mostly loose leaf tea, but a few tea bags. Actually, that was most of what was being sold at the festival- loose tea. I have a tea pot made for loose tea, but most of the time, I am lazy so I usually just buy bagged tea. Several of these samples are teas I probably would not pick on my own (Chocolate teas and Chai are not really my thing, but I am always willing to try new things, or try things I previously disliked just in case my tastes have changed.)
I knew that I wanted to visit the Harney and Sons booth, so that was where I went first. Their bagged teas online are usually $7-$8, but I was able to buy the Paris tea for $5! I got to sample it first, but I was already pretty set on buying it. Then I went to several other booths. All of them were letting you sample 2-3 different varieties of tea.
I ended up buying some tea bags to use with all the loose leaf tea I bought, because lazy (•‿•) . Also some raw honey, because I love honey and am particular about buying local honey. This honey is actually from Eastern Missouri, so not super local but local enough. Pretty excited about Anna Tea Shop (also Anna Marie’s Teas?) since that’s my name, and they have monthly tea parties! It is all the way in Liberty though, so I don’t know how willing I would be to go to those parties actually. Queen’s Pantry is in Leavenworth, so also a bit far, but I feel like it would be awesome like Brit’s in Lawrence (which I don’t think they had their own booth, or I missed it. I love Brit’s). Point is, it may be worth a day trip. Hugo Tea is just sold in stores, but the Jasmine Green I sampled was tasty and the Rest Well tea smelled so good I had to try it.
I tried a tea from Tea Market and it was okay, but it is actually located very close to me, so I wanted to support it. Thus, I bought a few sample packs from them, and I am excited to try them all!
Finally, I bought some cherry blossom decorated tea cups and plates from Yoki, which I haven’t visited in a store. It’s been present at Nakakon, and it will be at Paradiso next month. They have a store downtown (where parking sucks so I haven’t gone) and in Independence (which is a day trip, so I haven’t gone).
I was only at the Festival for a few hours, since at the time, I wasn’t sure if I was signed up for a tasting cafe (I just checked my email and turns out that I WAS…but at the sign-in desk I asked if my name was on the list and it wasn’t??! Oh well, I’m not too upset, since it didn’t cost extra for the cafe), and there was only one demonstration I was interested in. Sadly, the demonstration was pretty mediocre. There were a lot of technical issues, which is okay, but other people brought their small children who cried and were noisy for the entire first half. And then I couldn’t even see the tea demonstration because there were chairs blocking the presenter. ヽ(ー_ー )ノ Oh well.
Overall, I had a very good time, and I think next year I would want to go again. Next time, I will try to drag a friend along, or maybe the boyfriend. 〜(￣▽￣〜) I have friends who would enjoy this, and my boyfriend might decide tea is okay (he currently dislikes all hot beverages!)