So in my quest for things to drink that are sweet enough to not make me gag (you know, other than water), I noticed that some new teas are on the market that are now available pre-chilled at my local food-jobber. I like things that are easy to find everywhere, and that are available pre-chilled, cuz I’m a lazy American. I want something I can get nearby on my way to the beach to study Japanese.
So, these new teas. Lipton makes one, and Snapple makes another. Neither of them have High Fructose Corn Syrup, that bane of modern beverages and food in America, so hey, let’s give them a shot, right?
By the way, did you know your bread probably has HFCS in it? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!
So the first one I find is the Lipton ‘Pureleaf’ tea. The ‘sweetened’ black variety (they have several varieties mentioned on their web site, about half of which the food-jobber has in stock. This one has only 16g of carbohydrates per serving, which is half or less than most sodas. “Eeeexcellent,” I think to myself, and like Mr. Burns clutching his trillion dollar bill, I proceed to the checkout lane with my liquid prize in hand.
Lipton Pureleaf Tea – Taste Test results:
Sip 1: “Hey, this ain’t bad.” I’m not gagging at all. The gagometer is not showing any kind of reading whatsoever. But, let’s not assume!
Sip 2: “Could be sweeter. Still not gagging, though.” Okay, all is well, but let’s persevere – the scientific method must be observed at all times.
Sip 3: “Alrighty then.” Yes, this is a drink I can consume on a regular basis. Outstanding.
At $1.49 per bottle, this is a bit more than a bottled water (my favourite, the ‘Velveeta of bottled water,’ according to a fancy-pants water connoisseur) is around $1.19 per bottle, usually, when purchased singly and pre-chilled, and is a bigger bottle than this iced tea, too. Still, it’s not water, so it should be more expensive, right? Strangely, this doesn’t prevent a soda from the same company (Mug Root Beer, my root beer of choice, another Pepsi product, sadly) from costing less than Aquafina water, in the same freakin’ bottle! But I digress. Back to the tea. At $1.49, it’s not exactly an ink jet cartridge, so I think I can handle the cost, if this experiment should work out.
The next day, now determined to find the other varieties of Lipton Pureleaf Tea, I stumble upon Snapple’s attempts in this new niche. They have a few varieties, among them an Orange Pekoe (the standard black tea you find in America), and, holey rusted metal, Batman – Earl Grey! Okay, so never having had Earl Grey, this was quickly acquired, along with the Orange Pekoe, as well as some untried Lipton Pureleaf Teas – the Honey Green Tea and the Lemon. All nicely pre-chilled for my convenience. Yes, the terrorists hate us for our pre-chilled drinks, my friends, they truly do.
Okay, safely ensconced in Silver, my trust steed (okay, a silver VW diesel Jetta), the next step of my Master Plan™ proceeds apace. I will make the world use the word ensconce, I swear it! And the word apace! And spell ‘colour’ with a u!
Now, then, on to the Snapple. Snapple owes a debt since retiring their most excellent ‘Cantaloupe Cocktail’ drink many years ago. A debt is owed, I say!
Let’s go for the Snapple Orange Pekoe first, as a quick direct comparison to the Lipton.
Sip 1: “Hmm. Not gagging. Always promising.”
Sip 2: “Still not gagging. Could be sweeter, but not bad. Something’s missing, though…”
Sip 3: “Oh right, that’s what’s missing! The taste.” This thing tastes like watered-down tea.
Okay, still better than most sodas, but not up to the Lipton Pureleaf Tea experience.
Next, the geek choice du jour: Snapple’s Earl Grey. Oh yeah, make it so, baby.
Grabbing the bottle and preparing to tear into it like Riker on a hot alien babe, I think to myself, “Tea. Earl Grey. Cold.” Yes, I’m clever like that.
Sip 1: “Wow, seriously, I’m drinking Earl Grey?!” I think. Who the hell IS this ‘Earl Grey’ dude, anyway? Okay, let’s concentrate on the tea, here. Be serious, this is for science! Analyzing the taste… Yes, just as I suspected.
Sip 2: “Hmm. Yes, initial findings confirmed. Once more for England, though.”
Sip 3: “Oh yeah, definitely. That’s bloody disgusting!”
You have to curse like an Englishman when you drink tea. Seriously, I don’t make these rules up, you know.
Much like the Snapple Orange Pekoe, the taste is not very strong. The problem here is that the taste that IS there is distinctly reminiscent of some type of cleaning fluid, or at least, what I imagine a cleaning fluid would taste like, were I to so indulge. And while the average cleaning fluid may very well be quite low, or even devoid of carbohydrates, that’s not exactly the ringing endorsement one could wish for in a beverage, ya dig?
Picard … you disappoint me.