drank Unknown by Moderna Tea
8975 tasting notes

So, while we were in Vegas we walked almost all of the strip and checked out quite a few of the different hotels. Most were pretty cool, but my favourite was probably Caeser’s Palace – which also has a HUGE shopping area inside of it…

Quite by chance, we stumbled upon a tea store called “Moderna Tea”. They were displaying a lot of different Gong Fu tea sets in their front showcase so I was obviously very curious and insisted we go check it out. They had a tea brewer set up in front of their shop with little sample cups so that you could sample their “featured tea of the day” so we of course 100% did that. It was a little weird though; there was literally no one in the shop or outside sampling and nothing labelled on the brewed to indicate what the tea was. So we did try it, but I have zero clue what the tea was since no one was there to tell us. It tasted like a sweeter than average Monk’s Blend sort of deal though – those grenadine cherry/pomegranate flavours and a darker base. So that would be my guess!?

We looked inside the store too; gorgeous teaware all over and a huge “sniffing wall” with glass jars filled with their teas and little cork stoppers you could remove to smell them. Only about 1/2 of the jars were actually labelled though, so even though there were three that I thought smelled good I only knew what one of them was – a rooibos blend called Honey Pear Nectar. After maybe about ten minutes of looking around a very heavily blinged out woman walked in who was just CAKED in make up, and more highlighter than I’ve ever seen on any one person.

She actually seemed surprised to see people in the store, and almost immediately she tried to pull both of us to the back of the store where there was one of the make up counter type set ups you might see in Sephora; bar stool, mirrors, and such. She had a super thick European accent, and just kept saying “skin care routine?” over and over. We really flatly/bluntly told her we were NOT interested in whatever skincare/creams she was peddling and only wanted to look at the tea. Eventually she just left us alone.

We got to talking (the person I was with and I) and also did a quick google search of the store – and it became pretty clear, pretty quickly that the store was basically a front for a really scammy beauty cream peddling type of place.

However…

I really wanted to bring some sort of loose tea home with me from Vegas because I literally bring tea home for myself with EVERY vacation – it’s tradition at this point. And this was the last day that we were there before the day we were flying back, and I hadn’t found any other places selling tea. So even though we were convinced at this point that this place was almost certainly just using the guise of “tea stuff” to lure people in to look at their shady AF skin creams and sell them on stupidly overpriced skincare stuff, we decided to buy the one tea that I had liked (that was labelled) on the sniffing wall to take home, despite how RIDICULOUS the price was. I mean, it was $50 for 4 oz of this rooibos blend – definitely overprice. But it’s Vegas, you’re supposed to make stupid decisions, right!? And I don’t gamble at all so this might as well have been my equivalent…

You should have seen how shocked this woman looked when we said we wanted to buy the tea. I mean, she fucking scrambled. She spent live five minutes rapidly checking all of their shelves looking for a box of it, and eventually she just left the store without saying anything to either of us. We just kind of stood there confused for a few minutes, and right before we were about to walk about because we thought she wasn’t coming back, she shuffled back in with another woman; this one in a pantsuit where the most rings on her hands I’ve ever seen any woman wear. They started looking together; I mean, these ladies seemed INCREDIBLY uneducated about ANY of the tea they were selling. Finally, they found a box of the tea and shuffled us up to the till.

Again, as we were trying to pay, they tried talking us into picking up skin creams – each time offering a bigger discount when we said no. Finally, they just gave up and sold us our tea. We quickly got the fuck out of there.

I’m sure I payed WAY MORE for my tea that it’s possibly worth, and the quality is likely shaky – but I got my vegas souvenir, and at least I didn’t waste the money on slot machines or something like that…

derk

Ha! What a great picture you paint.

Tabby

Wow…

Mastress Alita

I remember being harassed by a salesperson in a Vegas mall who insisted on curling my hair with some curling iron thing, and I’m a hair naturalist and tonsurephobe that about went into a panic attack and kept looking at my friend like, “HEEEELP!” Finally I was like, “Todd, oh my gosh, if we don’t leave for the airport NOW I’m not going to be in time for my flight!” and just gave him that LOOK, and he totally got it, and was like, “You are totally right!” My flight wasn’t for several more days. It was the only thing to get that saleswoman to leave us alone. Some of those Vegas salespeople are really scary, seriously!

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derk

Ha! What a great picture you paint.

Tabby

Wow…

Mastress Alita

I remember being harassed by a salesperson in a Vegas mall who insisted on curling my hair with some curling iron thing, and I’m a hair naturalist and tonsurephobe that about went into a panic attack and kept looking at my friend like, “HEEEELP!” Finally I was like, “Todd, oh my gosh, if we don’t leave for the airport NOW I’m not going to be in time for my flight!” and just gave him that LOOK, and he totally got it, and was like, “You are totally right!” My flight wasn’t for several more days. It was the only thing to get that saleswoman to leave us alone. Some of those Vegas salespeople are really scary, seriously!

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Bio

Hello;

My name is Kelly. I’m a twenty something tea drinker and reviewer originally from the prairies, but recently relocated to Quebec. I was introduced to DAVIDsTEA and started drinking tea fairly casually about six years ago. At some point, that casual hobby became an ingrained part of my daily life; I became a part of a greater community, incorporated tea into my daily routine, and it became my career.

You know you’ve got it bad when you get your hobby tattooed to your arm.

I’m a TAC certified Tea Sommelier!

I drink a balance of flavoured tea and straight/traditional teas – in all formats. I prefer to have a wide, and general knowledge over many types of teas and catagories rather than focus on any one specific tea: a jack of all teas, master of none. Loose, bagged, matcha, Western style, iced, latted, Gong Fu…

You name it, I probably drink it.

In that vein, I’ll drink just about any type of tea – the only ones I have a particularly strong distaste for are green teas and Chai, with some exceptions of course. I have a weird relationship with Sheng pu’erh, but have been gradually increasing the amount of it I consume – currently I have a particular fascination with Yiwu Sheng. Other types of tea that I greatly enjoy are Yancha and other dark, heavily oxidized or roasted oolongs, most shou, black tea, and compressed/aged white teas. I’ll absolutely try anything once though; and I like to have an open mind and explore lots of tea types, even if I have reservations. I’ll probably never leave that “Exploratory” phase…

Usually I drink my tea straight, but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea, I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though. If I’ve not mentioned an addition, you’re safe to assume it’s been prepared straight up.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gong Fu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strong Chai spice profiles, mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, artificial tasting mango or peach, stevia, saltiness, or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Tea Pet Reference Guide:

Clay Pixiu Dragons: Zak & Wheezie
Clay Goldfish: Dot
Clay Monkey: Enzo
Jade Pixiu Dragon: Whitaker
Ruyao Carp: Splashy
Ruyao Dragon: Pablo
Ruyao Frog: Bebe
Sculpted Pig: Nelly
Sculpted Tuxedo Cat: Pekoe
Sculpted Tabby Cat: Marmalade
Ceramic Rabbit: Rupert
Ceramic Stringray: Irwin
Ceramic Horse: Bergamot
Ceramic Snail: Snicket
Ceramic Cat: Saffron
Wood Fired Man: Leopold

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.

Location

Montreal, QC, CA

Website

https://www.instagram.com/ros...

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