Thursday, January 17, 2013

OK, Sometimes Cheaper is Better


I drink tea these days. I drank it as a kid, decided at some unremembered point for some unremembered reason that I didn't like it any more, and only came back to it very recently because:

  1. I need to avoid sugar (diabetes) but like my caffeine; and
  2. I prefer to avoid aspartame and have trouble finding caffeinated diet sodas that are sweetened with sucralose or Stevia (Diet RC is; Publix, the main grocery chain in my new neck of the woods, has a store brand that is; but mostly it's aspartame out there); and
  3. Good coffee is expensive and I like to have it with creamers, sweetened condensed milk and other stuff I'm supposed to avoid, so ...
I drink my tea cold (brew it by the pitcher and stick it in the fridge -- when summer gets here I'll try "sun tea") and put stevia or sucralose and some flavoring (those sucralose-sweetened water flavorers, black cherry, cherry limeade, etc.) in it.

I started off with Luzianne green tea, which is very nice and which I occasionally treat myself to. Then I discovered that there are store brands of orange pekoe/black tea that are incredibly cheap, usually about $2 for 100 bags. And while they may not be quite as chock full of anti-oxidants as green tea, they seem to be reasonably healthy too.

Tonight, I saw Lipton orange pekoe/black on sale for not much more than that and figured I'd give it a try. I suspect it's quite good -- don't know yet because it's still cooling -- and may be even more flavorful than the cheap stuff.

But I doubt I'll be buying it again. Every bag comes in its own separate, semi-sealed envelope. It took me longer to get 15 bags of tea (for a 3-quart pitcher) out of the damn envelopes than it did to boil the water. Teapot is whistling on the stove and I'm still messing around with tea envelopes.

The cheap stuff doesn't have sealed envelopes. It doesn't have envelopes at all, or those little strings you use to hang the bag over the side of a cup or pitcher. For some brands the bags are even still stuck together in pairs.

That's easier. So unless the taste of the expensive stuff is just to die for, the cheap stuff it will be from now on. After I get through the other 85 bags of the expensive stuff, that is.


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