“I like tea…at the most with fruit essence, but not fruit sweetened!”
I love tea.
Growing up we always had a jug of iced tea in the fridge and as legend would have it, I drank it straight out of my bottle.
Incidentally, at my bridal shower, my dog Buttercup gifted me with an iced tea maker…what a thoughtful dog.
I love tea and our fridge is always stocked with UNSWEETENED iced tea…I repeat UNSWEETENED! Behold no less than four containers of tea in the fridge at all times.
Parker loves tea as do our kids. Occasionally, they request an Arnold Palmer (i.e., tea with a splash of lemonade), but for the most part, it’s 100% lovely, unsweetened tea.
One of the many things I loved about California was the access to patios where one could brunch, lunch and sip bottomless iced tea. Freshly brewed tea was the standard bevvy and no one questioned your motives for requesting a straight up tea, without sweetener.
Since moving to Halifax I have noticed a few things…
1) It’s rare to find unsweetened iced tea at a restaurant.
2) Iced Tea = out of a can or soda fountain
3) Iced Tea is almost always sweetened
4) If unsweetened tea is an option, it’s always overpriced and refills aren’t free.
5) Canadian Starbucks doesn’t understand
In taking a closer look at number five, 75% of the time Starbucks messes up my tea, especially when I order unsweetened Tazo Passion Tea. This conversation happens almost every time:
Me: I would like a Venti, Passion Iced Tea, unsweetened, no lemonade
Starbucks: Really? No sweetener?!?
Me: Yes, no sweetener.
Starbucks: You want the lemonade though, right?
Me: No lemonade.
One of three things then happens:
1) Starbucks ignores my directions and makes the tea with multiple pumps of sugar.
2) Starbucks makes it a Passion Iced Tea Lemonade.
3) Starbucks malfunctions, doesn’t know what to do, and makes a water downed iced tea.
Ultimately, when the person before me requests a “soy latte with two shots of espresso and one packet of stevia” and the barista barely bats an eye lash, I start to wonder if there is a coffee bias in the world.
If you’re wondering, I am not that jerk person that returns my tea. I take a sip, acknowledge its shortcomings, maybe joke about it with my kids and move on. I realize that having an iced beverage, sipped through a straw which I ordered on demand, is a luxury and one I am happy to have.
Subsequently, it’s Mother’s Day and in addition to doing absolutely nothing, I plan on visiting Starbucks, alone, sip my tea (hopefully unsweetened) and enjoy a few quiet moments to myself.
Happy Mother’s Day everyone!