TeaHop: The tea selections of Columbia’s dining halls, reviewed! In this half-assed review, I attempt to give you some insight and guidance for your next tea drinking experience.
Bigelow Green Tea with Pomegranate
Forethoughts: I’m a huge fan of green tea. It is, in my opinion, one of the most relaxing and healing teas in existence. I’ve never had a bad experience with green tea. Something tells me that is about to change. How can you combine two flavors that have no business being in the same cup? It sounds like pure madness to me…
Sachet aroma: It smells almost exactly how I’d expect a pungent, fruity tea to smell. If there’s any hint of green tea in the aroma, it’s being totally overpowered by the acidity and fruitiness of the pomegranate. After smelling the sachet, I think this tea will taste solely of pomegranate. That may not be a bad thing, but it surely defeats the purpose of having any green tea in the sachet if you can’t taste it. This smells like something the American Tea Room would dub a “holiday blend.” Usually when things smell pretty, they taste bland, but that’s just my experience.
Taste: After the first sip, I know exactly what this tea is like. Just as I thought, it’s one of those fruity teas that smells lovely but has no actual flavor at all. I could literally be sipping warm sink water. Not only does it not taste anything like pomegranate, there’s literally no presence of green tea at all. This tea is so painfully flavorless that I almost want to pour it down the drain. It’s amber hue is a total false advertisement. The only good thing I can say about this tea is that it doesn’t taste bad, it just tastes like nothing. If this tea was a spice, it would be flour. Note: I did end up pouring this tea down the sink and I was wrong about the color of the liquid. It’s actually a repulsive, sickly rust color.
Final verdict: 1/10
Bigelow Earl Grey Black Tea
Forethoughts: I’m a huge fan of Earl Grey. It’s the perfect tea for feeling like you’re riding on a dark horse through the woods on a hazy day somewhere in the outer Hebrides. That what it is for me, anyway. I should also mention that it’s a beautiful day today and my mood is quite high so that may affect the way I perceive this tea. The packaging says it contains real bergamot oil from Italy. Lord take me now.
Sachet aroma: Absolutely mesmerizing. I am fully entranced by the richness of the scent of bergamot oil and it’s beauty really shines through here. I can also smell the black tea base which is wonderful because this is, in fact, a black tea and not just a bag of hay covered in bergamot oil. I’m not going to lie, this is an exciting tea and I truly hope not to be disappointed by it. Note: I just learned that bergamot oil comes from the bergamot orange which looks like a very wrinkly lime. Nature is beautiful!
Taste: This tea is everything you’ll think it’ll be. It’s dark, rich, very bergamot-esque and warms the soul. It’s not overly bitter; it strikes a great balance between richesse and weightlessness. It’s a wonderful tea for what it is and is certainly something I’ll be returning to in the future. If you want something dependable, something that feels like a perfumed bath for your soul, this is your tea. With that said, this is obviously not a luxury tea, so it’s majesty is only so much. I’m not going to write home about this one on tear-stained parchment. It’s just a great Earl Grey, that’s it.
Final Verdict: 8.5/10
Bigelow Classic Green Tea
Forethoughts: Green tea is perhaps one of the most essential forces of this reality and any for that matter. Its history is endless, its impact immeasurable. There isn’t a soul on this Earth that green tea hasn’t touched. If green tea were the Bible, I’m expecting this brand to deliver something akin to Veggietales. There’s no way some cheap green tea could even begin to express the immaculate reputation of the leaf.
Sachet aroma: I’m trying really hard to get any fragrance out of this teabag. I look like an idiot, sniffing it with all my might. This could easily be a bag of mundane alfalfa with a drop of green tea oil. There’s almost nothing to work with which leads me to believe that the bag won’t do a thing to a cup of hot water.
Taste: Disappointed doesn’t even begin to describe how this makes me feel. I was comfortable being disgusted by the pomegranate green tea but this is just insulting. Again, this could be a cup of regular sink water. The best thing I could say about it is that it perhaps has a slightly earthy undertone to its nothingness. Would this tea help you if you had a sore throat? Probably not much more than drinking a cup of warm water would. I also burned my fingertips making this one so it deserves an extraordinarily large frown of disapproval.
Final verdict: 0.5/10
Bigelow Sweet Dreams Herbal Tea
Forethoughts: This tea comes in a silvery blue package with stars and a crescent moon. It whispers sweet lullabies and promises a good night’s sleep. Too bad I’m writing an entire essay after drinking this. It says the blend is relaxing and comforting with chamomile and soothing mint. I certainly agree chamomile is a comforting flower but mint? That seems counterintuitive for a relaxing blend. I associate mint with alertness and action, not sleepy times.
Sachet aroma: Definitely a minty blend. Chamomile doesn’t have too strong a scent so I wasn’t surprised that the mint took main stage and overpowered anything else included. I’m not a huge fan of mint teas just because it reminds me of toothpaste and bad ice creams but this isn’t looking like it will be terribly atrocious. It may just be ok. Only one way to find out…
Taste: Firstly, I’d like to compliment the hue and steam of this tea. Although I’m not sure why given that neither mint nor chamomile is rose-colored, this liquid is an enticing amethyst-garnet hue. It smells floral and the mint is more gentle than in the aroma of the unsteeped sachet. Unfortunately, the tea itself has little flavor. It’s mild with some light earthiness but there really isn’t any mint present in the taste. If anything, this tea is far more an aromatic experience than taste adventure. It’s not unpleasant to sip, just uneventful and somewhat dull.
Final verdict: 4.5/10
Ok so by this point in my series of reviews I had burned my fingers and mouth too many times to warrant me trying other Bigelow (because that’s about all these fucking dining halls have) teas and I had to pee literally every ten fucking minutes so here’s what I have to say about the rest of those wack ass fruit-flavored teas they have like apple cinnamon orange whatever the fuck: THEY’RE GROSS! You’d be better off drinking toilet water. It would definitely have more flavor. The Lipton black tea is fine. The Bigelow Earl Grey is really where the money’s at. The rest is absolutely shit. Peace.
Tea via Bwog Archives