QUICK REVIEW: Lipton Natural Energy Premium Black Tea

Lipton Natural Energy Premium Black Tea

Purchased Price: FREE*
Size: 40 tea bags
Purchased at: Given to us by Lipton
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: 75 milligrams of sweet, sweet caffeine per cup, which is 20 milligrams more than regular Lipton black tea and the ONLY thing that gets me excited about this tea. When it cools down a little, it makes a wonderful hand warmer while in a mug. Rainforest Alliance Certified. Drinking tea with your pinky sticking out.
Cons: Tastes like any ol’ black tea. There are tastier ways to get caffeine. Not sure if has flavonoids (if it did, wouldn’t Lipton want to let everyone know?). Not as aromatic as regular Lipton black tea. Microwaving Red Bull to have a warm pick-me-up.

Lipton Natural Energy Premium Black Tea Closeup

*Thanks to the folks at Lipton for sending me two boxes of Lipton Natural Energy Premium Black Tea to keep me caffeinated for a while.

Nutrition Facts: 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of carbohydrates, and 0 grams of protein.

QUICK REVIEW: Nestea Half Lemonade Half Iced Tea Liquid Water Enhancer

Nestea Half Lemonade Half Iced Tea Liquid Water Enhancer

Purchased Price: $3.99 (on sale)
Size: 1.76 fl oz.
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Drinkable, but I’d rather get myself an Arizona Arnold Palmer Half & Half. No sugar. No calories. Made from real tea leaves. 26 eight-ounce servings per bottle. Being mesmerized by the liquid water enhancer being shot into a glass of water.
Cons: Lemonade and iced tea flavors are too mild. I wouldn’t call it a lemonade flavor, it’s more like lemon juice. Not for those who hate propylene glycol. No caffeine. Unlike MiO which disperses easily without stirring, this needs a spoon, finger, or whatever you have handy as a stirrer.

Nutrition Facts: about 1/2 tsp. – 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Bigelow Eggnogg’n Tea

When I saw this tea, I had a vision that was as horrifying as it was freaky. I envisioned Bam Bam Bigelow was behind this tea company. I imagined him at board meetings in his flaming leotard with a striped blue tie and sipping tea from a dainty ceramic cup with a silver teapot. And God help you if you give Bam Bam any lip or a TPS report missing the new cover. Alas, he’s not the founder of the company.

Eggnog and tea. Oh, dear God. Are we out of possible fruit tea combinations already? Last time I checked, there was lemon, raspberry, and orange zinger. No one has done durian or starfruit or kiwi tea, yet. There’s probably a gold mine in those flavors. Or how about a refreshing garlic tea? But seriously, what were the people behind this tea thinking, bringing together an egg-based beverage and tea?

Here’s an idea, Bigelow Tea.

Roasty Chestnut Tea. It’s as wintery as eggnog and you can have a picture of two chestnuts roasting over the fire on the box. “It’ll warm your chestnuts up in no time at all!” could be its slogan.

All kidding and insanity aside, this tea is actually pretty good. The tea bag pre-teabagging, smells very much like cinnamon oatmeal, but nothing like eggnog. It’s actually quite homely and uplifting. The tea itself, after the steeping process, has a color somewhere between black and green tea which isn’t a surprise since it is made with those two teas. It retains the oatmeal smell, which is quite pleasant since most teas tend to smell musky like, say, Bam Bam Bigelow’s armpit.

The taste of this tea, well, doesn’t exactly live up to its name. There’s nothing rich or custardy about this tea, but it does sort of taste creamy-ish if you consider instant oatmeal creamy. It tastes like tea with a mild cinnamon spice and notes of instant oatmeal. I liked it, but it may not be for everyone. It’s also heavier to most other teas, which definitely makes it a winter tea, but that’s like saying a dog-shaped balloon is heavier than a helium balloon. They’re both still light.

The tea is a little more expensive compared to other teas available on the market, but still a decent product. All in all, it’s a good tea that suffers from a terrible name. Now if only there was a Bam Bam Bigelow Tea that came in a black box covered in flames.

Nutrition Facts – 1 tea bag – 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of carbs, 0 gram of fiber, 0 grams of sugar, 0 gram of protein, and testicle-free.)

Item: Bigelow Eggnoggin’ Tea
Price: $3.49
Size: 8 ounces
Purchased at: Holiday Market
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Instant Cinnamon Oatmeal smell and flavor. Decent bargain. Bam Bam Bigelow Tea. Bam Bam Bigelow the Executive
Cons: Nothing eggnogg-y about this tea. Bam Bam Bigelow’s armpit. Heavier tea. Stupid name. Garlic tea.

Revolution 3D Tea

Coffee and tea are very much alike. Both need to be roasted to get their flavor, both come in caffeinated and decaffeinated forms, and both are spelled with unnecessary letters, that if removed, wouldn’t affect their pronunciations. Cofe or T, anyone? If I had to choose between a racist tea party with Amy Winehouse or a coffee-fueled marathon of The Hills, I would have to choose the racial slur slinging and tea sipping festivities with Ms. Winehouse and hope that no stray needle hits me or her eyelashes don’t devour me like a Venus Flytrap. I would choose the tea party because I really enjoy tea in any situation and because watching several episodes of The Hills would cause my IQ to drop by about 50 points.

Recently, I’ve been enjoying the new Revolution 3D Teas because I like my tea just the way I like my Fruity Pebbles — cold, fruity and sweet. The canned beverage comes in four flavors: blueberry, mango, pomegranate and green apple. According to Revolution Tea, it’s a “Multi Dimensional Beverage” because it contains a super fruit, multiple vitamins, white tea, yadda, yadda, yadda. All of that is nice, but I’ve been staring at these Revolution 3D cans for hours and have yet to see the image of a sailboat or anything else pop out at me.

Each Revolution 3D Tea had a perfectly balanced taste. Its sweetness was just right, each flavor had a slight tartness, the fruit didn’t overpower the flavor of the tea and the tea didn’t overpower the flavor of the fruit. I really enjoyed all the flavors, but the mango and pomegranate were my favorites. What I also really enjoyed about this product are the sweet, sweet antioxidants from the white tea and super fruits, although each only contained 2% juice, so I’m not too sure how much the super fruits contributed to its antioxidant content. All that I hope for is that it’s enough to protect me if I were to get hit by one of Ms. Winehouse’s flying heroin needles.

(Nutrition Facts – 8 ounces – 70 calories, 0 grams of fat, 5 milligrams of sodium, 17 grams of carbohydrates, 16 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein, 100% vitamin C, 20% vitamin B3, 20% vitamin B6, 20% vitamin B12, 20% vitamin B5, and 3D.)

Item: Revolution 3D Tea
Price: FREE (12 ounces)
Purchased at: Sent by Revolution Tea people
Rating: 8 out of 10 (mango)
Rating: 8 out of 10 (pomegranate)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (green apple)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (blueberry)
Pros: Well balanced flavor. Sweetness was just right. All flavors were really good. Slight tartness. Use of pure cane sugar. No High Fructose Corn Syrup. Antioxidants, but I’m not too sure how much. Fruity Pebbles.
Cons: Contains only 2% juice. Can’t see 3D images on can. Getting hit by a Winehouse heroin needle. Watching a marathon of The Hills.

Snapple Classic Black Teas

When I was young, I used to have elegant tea parties. I would put on my Sunday’s best and bring out my finest China plasticware. Some of you may think that tea parties are “girly” and my parents may have “wondered” about me at that time, but when the party guests included Megatron, hooded Cobra Commander, Darth Vader’s Tie Fighter, Kikaida, a 1983 Topps Steve Balboni baseball card, and Tenderheart Bear it automatically became a manly tea party.

Unfortunately, tea was never served at my parties, since my mother wouldn’t let me near the stove due to my pyromaniac tendencies and my dad wouldn’t let me pour hot water due to being prone to what he called “Bill Buckner hands.” So I served room temperature tap water at my tea parties, which is much like the equivalent of having wine coolers at a wine tasting party.

Sure my tea parties were sausage-fests, but it was less about who was there and more about what we talked about. In those days, we would discuss democracy in Eastern Europe, the pros and cons of both VHS and Betamax tapes, the rise of the Japanese Yen, and ask each other whose double-Ts were hotter, Smurfette or Scarlett.

Now that I’m grown up and over my pyromaniac and Bill Buckner tendencies, I could have tea parties with actual tea, but most of my tea party friends are no longer with me. I sold Megatron on eBay for $75, hooded Cobra Commander is lost in the yard somewhere, Darth Vader’s Tie Fighter is in its original box sitting on a shelf at my parent’s house, Kikaida was sold at a garage sale, and my 1983 Topps Steve Balboni card was attached to my BMX bike to make fake motorcycle sounds. Thankfully, Tenderheart Bear still sleeps with me every single night, so I wouldn’t be faced with the ways of the alcoholic and drinking alone.

Recently, we tried the Snapple Classic Black Teas, which come in three traditional black tea flavors: English Breakfast, Earl Grey, and Orange Pekoe. Each of them are lightly sweetened and all-natural. They also contain less than 100 calories per bottle, have antioxidants, and should be served chilled.

I shared some with Tenderheart Bear as we discussed the rise of the Canadian dollar, the impact of Wal-Mart on small business, how mediocre the TV show Heroes is this season, and the likelihood that a woman would get an STD from a member of an 1980s hair band…including the drummer. We also gave our thoughts about the Snapple Classic Black Teas and Tenderhear Bear, a connoisseur of teas, didn’t care for them too much.

He thought each of them tasted like someone made tea, forgot they made tea, left it on the kitchen counter for a day, realized they made tea the day before, was too lazy to reheat the tea, was to cheap to throw out the tea, and added a couple of lumps of processed sugar to the tea. He thought they all captured the essence of the flavors, but felt that serving them cold didn’t do them justice and the sugar did kind of ruin the flavor of the tea. He admitted that he’s a purist and would prefer to drink these flavors as hot tea.

It was nice catching up with Tenderheart Bear even though we see each other every night. That quality time spent together got me thinking about starting up tea parties again. I could invite Tenderheart Bear, my iPod for musical conversations, my black pinstripe dress shirt from Banana Republic for fashion topics, my laser printer for literary subjects, and maybe condom tin to talk about why I’m still not getting any.

(Nutrition Facts – One bottle (varies per flavor) – 70 to 90 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 to 5 milligrams of sodium, 17 to 22 grams of carbs, 17 to 21 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of sugar.)

Item: Snapple Classic Black Teas
Price: FREE (Retail price – $1.39)
Purchased at: Given by nice PR people
Rating: 2 out of 5
Pros: Antioxidants. All-natural. Made with real sugar and honey. Less than 100 calories per bottle. Scarlett (I dig redheads).
Cons: Tastes like cold tea that someone accidently threw in sugar. The sugar kind of ruins the flavor of the tea. These flavors taste better hot. Drinking alone. Steve Balboni’s ability to strikeout.