Review: Tea-riffic options offered at The VI Tea

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Stumbling upon several stunning photos of the drinks offered at The VI Tea, I was eager to seek out the newly-opened shop.

Upon my arrival, the tea shop was prominent and easy to locate in the plaza. Parking was also easy to find. The store itself was furnished with many minimalistic and elegant features as well as outdoor seating. Potted flowers and succulent plants were scattered on wooden tables along with lights that stretched along the walls, including one wall covered in white roses.

We got seated relatively quickly, and I noticed that most workers predominantly spoke Mandarin. Language was a small barrier when ordering, but the waiters were all very cooperative and friendly.

The menu was extremely elaborate, displaying a vast variety of options from cheese foam drinks to smoothies, juices, birds’ nest teas and herbal teas. Food and snacks like crepes, rice dishes, noodles, and fries were also available.

We eventually decided on the Taro Cheese Cream Milk Tea ($5.95), Korean Kimchi Fried Rice ($6.99), and Fried Seafood Platter ($6.99). The drink and fried rice came quickly, but the Fried Seafood Platter was a dreadful wait.

The Taro Cheese Cream Milk Tea was delightful and presentable as it was garnished with gold flakes. The purple cheese cream was light and tasted like taro, just as I expected it to. The milk tea, however, was too sweet for my taste, but the sweetness levels can be adjusted when ordering. Though it was quite pricey, I enjoyed it.

The Kimchi Fried Rice and Fried Seafood Platter were subpar. The fried rice came in a relatively large portion with a fried egg, but without a dominant kimchi flavor, it created an overall bland taste. The Fried Seafood Platter, consisting of fried squid, fish balls, and other fried varieties, was overly salty, but I still enjoyed it as the portions were worth the money.

The atmosphere was ideal for conversation, as soft music played in the background. I would recommend anyone to try out this place for the unique drink varieties, but if I were to visit again, I would certainly only order a drink.

The VI Tea is located at 416 E Las Tunas Dr #E, San Gabriel, CA 91776 and can be reached at (626) 656-6114.

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