Tea Please?

by Jasper Solt

Now that winter is here, there couldn’t be a better time for drinking tea. Winter days aren’t quite the same without a cup of tea, a warm blanket, and a proper negligence of all school-related duties. So, to celebrate the coming break, here are a few tea reviews to inform your tea-drinking decisions. Most of these teas can be found in HB, whether in Parson’s tea corner, the cafeteria or the Hath Caff. If you’re more of a coffee person, or just don’t like tea, then shame on you. Use this list to diversify your tastes.

 

Lipton Black ★★★★

Found readily in the cafeteria, Lipton Black is a generic hotel tea that has about as much flavor as personality. It tastes like crushed ladybugs. Don’t ask why I know what that tastes like. It’s bitter and tasteless, with its only merit being its caffeine levels. Lipton is simply a disgrace to the world of tea. Also, side note, why is it just Lipton “Black tea?” Black tea is a category of tea. What type of black tea is it? It’s a mystery, which I don’t quite appreciate when it comes to consumables. It’s like a box of coffee that says it’s just “coffee-ish coffee.” It’s bizarrely vague.

Flavor ★★★★
Interesting-ness ★★★★
Caffeine? Yes
Cost? Free
Location? Cafeteria
Bag or loose-leaf? Bag

 

Sweet Orange Spice ★★★★★

A rather unassuming small container in the Writing Center Tea Corner (henceforth referred to as the WCTC), Sweet Orange Spice is a delightful black tea. You’re not allowed to drink it though, because it’s my favorite. Yes, I’m reviewing a yummy tea and not allowing you to have any. Regardless, you are allowed to imagine how it tastes: it’s simultaneously sweet and spicy, with hints of cinnamon and orange citrus. Be warned: it’s a very strong tea, and the first time I brewed it I accidentally brewed far too many leaves and almost spat it out because of how strong it was.

Flavor ★★★★
Interesting-ness ★★★★★
Caffeine? Yes
Cost? Free
Location? WCTC
Bag or loose-leaf? Loose-leaf

 

Bombay Chai ★★★★★

Also found in the WCTC, Bombay chai is a solid chai. It’s loose-leaf, which improves the flavor. It’s a bit generic, which is fine because generic chai is still good. It’s got just the right amount of spice with sweetness, making it an all-around good choice. Pro tip: Chai is particularly good with milk.

Flavor ★★★★
Interesting-ness ★★★★★
Caffeine? Yes
Cost? Free
Location? WCTC
Bag or loose-leaf? Loose-leaf

 

Chocolate Rooibos ★★★★★

This is a very sweet tea, which I personally love. Rooibos in itself is a very distinctive flavor (think sugared vanilla) and with the addition of chocolate it only gets sweeter and more interesting. I’ve always been a fan of plain rooibos, and chocolate teas are incredibly tasty when brewed properly (my favorite chocolate tea is Teavana’s chocolate peppermint), so I’m quite a fan of this particular blend. Imagine Neapolitan ice cream, when you take a bite of chocolate mixed with vanilla; that’s what this tea tastes like. A quick note about buying tea from the Hath Caff: If you buy a small, you want to use only one tea bag because a single tea bag is made for approximately 8 ounces, which is the size of the small cup. If you get a large, however, you might want to double-bag the tea, because if you don’t the flavor will be much weaker.

Flavor ★★★★
Interesting-ness ★★★★★
Caffeine? No
Cost? $1.00 for a small
Location? Hath Caff
Bag or loose-leaf? Bag

 

Decaf Ginger Lemon ★★★★★

This is a classic sick tea, and it’s very good for your throat. It’s simultaneously tangy and soothing, with the perfect blend of ginger spiciness and lemon zest. It’s not my personal favorite (I tend to prefer spicier, stronger teas) but it’s comforting and classic.

Flavor ★★★★★
Interesting-ness ★★★★★
Caffeine? No
Cost? $1.00 for a small
Location? Hath Caff
Bag or loose-leaf? Bag

 

That’s it for my tea reviews! Obviously there’s much more tea available at HB than just those that I’ve reviewed, and even more types of tea out in the wide wide world (ie. your local grocery store). This winter break be sure to treat yourself to new and interesting foods and experiences, regardless of whether they’re tea related or not.