Once I heard about Terror Behind The Walls at the Eastern State Penitentiary in Philly, I knew I wanted to go. It looked pretty cool. What was even more intriguing to me was that this haunted attraction would take place inside this old prison. A prison that is said to be haunted! So of course to have some Halloween fun my friend and I went.
I have been to Philly a handful of times. Most times finding something new and different to do, see, and eat. This time was no different. I was a little too tired, otherwise my day of exploring would have been longer. Getting to Philadelphia from New York was quick and relativity easy. It served as a nice day trip and my friends and I had fun.
I have been to Philly a few times prior, but due to different circumstances I was never able to really explore the city. Due to my lack of exploring I really wanted to head back and seize that opportunity. For my birthday weekend I finally got to do just that. Taking a 2 hour road trip from New York I made spending a weekend in Philadelphia happen.
Philadelphia is home to many notable things, The Rocky Stairs, The Liberty Bell, and so many other historical places and things. One extremely notable thing is the Philly Cheesesteak. Visiting and not eating on is sinful and you honestly would be missing out! While many people would make certain suggestions to eat at Geno’s and other infamous spots, the place that you really need to go for a delicious cheesesteak is Jim’s Steaks and that is exactly where I headed!
I got the pleasure of being invited, by the coordinators of the festival, to the Coffee and Tea Festival in Philly. It was held at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center. It was a two-day event. I was only able to attend the last day, and it was very crowded as I pulled into the parking lot. I arrived an hour after it began and there were people everywhere hovering over the booths.
Upon checking in, they give out orange reusable bags with lots of goodies inside from different companies. It was also great to have to put flyers and other things potentially purchased in the bag. Some of the things that came in the bag were different teas and coffees, chips, cookies, granola bars, and flyers. I decided the best way to start checking everything out was to head to the back of the festival and work my way to the front.
I stopped at the majority of the booths and tasted tons of samples. Obviously there were many great products, but these are the ones that stuck out to me…
Take Time For Tea– I thought this was pretty awesome. They sell teas, tea cups, and more. What stood out to me the most, was they offer tea parties. They will come to you with tea and little sandwiches as long as your up to no more than 2 hours away. They also teach etiquette. I especially thought this was a great thing for children. What little girl wouldn’t like a tea party? They have reasonable prices and do bridal and baby showers, children’s parties, and more. You can find out more at: http://taketimefortea.com/
Capital Teas – Not only did they have the most people visiting their booth at once, they had the most friendliest people working the booth. They had some great tasting teas. One called the Fountain of Youth, which is a white tea I will be purchasing in the near future. The main thing that stuck out at Capital Teas was the Chardonnay tea and the tea beer. I don’t drink except once in a blue moon, but this was really good! I would have never thought to mix tea with alcohol. The mint tea with Stella Artois was great! Something I would certainly attempt to make myself. All if not most of their teas are loose and I was told that it would last up to 3 months. Their website is pretty great, they even talk about cooking with tea. If your lucky you may have even had an opportunity to stop in at one of their brick and mortars, but if not you can always order some online at: http://www.capitalteas.com/
Javazen– Now I am not really a fan of coffee. Smells good, but the taste has never really been my thing. My best friend on the other hand cannot function without her Nespresso fix! Just the other day she was telling me all about a useful guide to some of the different Nespresso capsules out there that she discovered on the full moon cafe website. Ultimately, Javazen made me think differently about coffee. They put cacao in the coffee I tasted and it was really good. When I spoke to the gentleman and told him I don’t really like coffee, but that Javazen was good, he said a lot of non-coffee drinkers were saying that. They liked it so much that some of them had even ordered coffee makers from companies like the great coffee brewers, so that they could enjoy Javazen whenever they wanted it. Honestly, I think it’s pretty great considering I don’t drink coffee. One thing they definitely want you to know is that it is certified organic. It seemed like the chocolate made all the difference. Find out more at http://www.drinkjavazen.com/
Zest Tea– This was pretty interesting, especially for those who drink coffee or energy drinks to give you that boost. They decided to put a lot more caffeine then you would normally find in teas rather than succumb to coffee or energy drinks. According to them, Zest Tea has as much caffeine as coffee and 3x the levels of traditional tea. It also has amino acids to reduce jitters and crashing. It tasted pretty good. So if you are looking for an alternative try them out at: http://www.getzesttea.com/
Sahpat Teas– They had a really nice set up with an abundance of tea that drew me to them. I tried their Organic Green Tea with mango and their toasted almond tea. I purchased a box of the Organic Green Tea with Mango and I kick myself everyday for not getting the Toasted Almond. I will certainly have to order some soon! The tea is loose, so I have been making it with the Keruig. It smells and taste so amazing and smooth. I have tried several different green teas and this has been one of the best! Check them out at: http://www.sahpat.com/
WildFlowers Tea– It looks like coffee, but they made it in a blender. It tasted pretty good. The lady was explaining how it helps with the immune system, nerves, mental clarity, and so much more. I was drawn in and interested to learn more, especially since it tasted good. They have 3 different types: Beauty, Longevity, and Elite. It is supposed to work from the inside out. Beauty is supposed to revitalize skin. Longevity is said to support healthy aging and boost vitality. Elite is for the athletes out there boosting stamina and enhancing immunity. Needless to say I was intrigued, but they didn’t have any for sale. They are supposed to be sending me a sample, hopefully that comes soon. Learn more about them at: http://www.wildflowerstea.com/
Although it was a coffee and tea festival there were some really great edibles.
Salzon Chocolate – They are the first salted chocolate brand. It was different, but I love chocolate so I wanted to try some. They had 3 different flavors: Organic Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt and Organic Candy Canes, (which was my favorite), Organic Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt and Organic Black Pepper, and Organic Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt and Organic Cayenne. The Black Pepper was very subtle. The Cayenne kicks you in the mouth once you give it an opportunity and it is pretty hot. They have other flavors and they cost $4 a bar. You can order some at: http://www.salazonchoc.com/
TerraNut – This was pretty good. Gluten free and vegan. It is all natural raw snack. They are great snacks to carry around. I describe it as eating trail mix, but in a couple of yummy bites. http://terranut.com/
BumbleBerry Farm– You can’t go wrong with some yummy honey. The lady I spoke to was a beekeeper at BumbleBerry Farms and she had some great products with honey. There were some pretzels out with honey creams. I tried the Squirrel Crazy Maple, honey cream on the pretzel, and it was delicious! I wanted to try more, but the crowd was growing around the tables. I will have to order some. There are other flavors and even more on their site at: http://www.bumbleberryfarms.com/
With the holidays coming up these would be some great products to get your hands on! If you don’t get some for that coffee or tea lover than get some for yourself!
Also check out the Coffee & Tea Festival when it comes to a town near you! It is a lot of fun, a lot of great information, and some great tasting products.
Thank you Philly Coffee and Tea Festival for having me!
Disclaimer: Whilst receiving a pass to attend this festival, all opinions are my own and have not been influenced.