Thursday, September 10, 2009

Celestial Seasonings Raspberry Gardens Green Tea w/ White Tea

I have always loved Celestial Seasonings brand and I still like them, but I was quite surprised to find all the green teas are now with white tea for a smoother flavor when I was at the grocery store yesterday. I decided to grab a box of the Raspberry Gardens and Blueberry Breeze to compare them to the older versions, which I had some of on my tea shelf, even though I really did not need tea nor really even had room for it on my shelf. I also grabbed the last two boxes of the old version of Raspberry Gardens, as it is my favorite flavor and raspberry has some useful herbal uses for me, just in case the new version was not as good and it is here to stay.

Yesterday I tried the new version of Raspberry Gardens. I will admit it is definitely a smoother flavor and that is probably a good thing for those that do not tend to like green tea. Also, note that I have nothing against white tea, as I do have some varieties of that on my tea shelf. However, the new version of Raspberry Gardens did not seem as good as the original. The main thing that got me is that it did not turn red. Sure the flavor was still raspberry, but it just did not seem as strong of a flavor and part of the strong flavor missing was of course the green being balanced out by the white.

I thought maybe I was just imagining them being very different, so today I took out the old and the new and did a side by side comparison. It turns out the formula is totally different and not just the adding of white tea in the new version. The old version ingredients read "Green Tea, Hibiscus, Blackberry Leaves, Natural Raspberry Flavors with Other Natural Flavors (Contains Soy Lecithin), Roasted Chicory, and Raspberries." The new version though reads "Green Tea, White Tea, Natural Flavor with Other Natural Flavors, and Raspberries." Basically they added White Tea and took out Hibiscus, Blackberry Leaves, and Roasted Chicory. I have a feeling something in that is what gave the old version the red color, but it also made it a more full flavor enhancing the raspberry. The new version just tastes so bland in comparison. I am thinking that maybe it can be better if I steep it longer than I am used to, but knowing the old is better is a mental taste issue that makes it hard to even say I like the new version.

Overall the old version is better in my opinion. It has a fuller and stronger flavor. The new version at least does contain raspberry, but the missing ingredients seem to have been necessary to enhance the raspberry. As a green tea both are good and it is not that the new one tastes bad. It just is that the new one is not an improvement, which I think they are trying for with the addition of white tea. I am glad that I stocked up on the old version with the last two boxes of it at my store. However, I hope they soon realize that the old version was better and bring it back. Keep the new one, too, though because I think it is great for those that want to drink green tea for the health benefits, but do not like green tea, as the white tea does make it at least a little more palatable for them. The true green tea lovers like me, though, do not need the white tea added, especially if it means getting rid of the stuff that makes the flavor so loved.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Limited Edition Chips Ahoy Fudge Bites

Yesterday in the grocery store I found these Limited Edition Chips Ahoy Fudge Bites on sale 3 for $6. I rarely buy pre-made cookies and when I do they are usually from the bakery section and not packaged ones like this. However, I am a sucker for limited edition things and this was one of the very few cookies ones that actually caught my attention. Maybe, it was the purple packaging, but whatever it was it did not end up with me disappointed, as these are actually really good cookies. Good thing they are limited edition and hopefully it is not a majorly lingering one, as I sure could be tempted to buy these again.

The cookies seem to be the basic Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookies, but I certainly do not remember them being this small. Anyways they are a nice melt and your mouth type hard cookie, which is the only way I enjoy a hard cookie. The fudge topping is what really makes it an amazing cookie as far as pre-packaged cookies go. I really like the smooth fudge part on top. Best of all it is a pretty generous amount of fudge almost entirely covering the cookie, although the cookie itself is kind of small, but it is a great balance of fudge and cookie.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Eating Right Pomegranate Light Ice Cream Cups

I thought the Eating Right Pomegranate Light Ice Cream Cups would be good considering I like most things Pomegranate. These ended up being a big disappointment, though. The taste is horrible and nothing like Pomegranate. I think the closest thing to describe it is that it tastes like red licorice. It comes with an easy to use wooden spoon, which tastes better than the ice cream. That just says how horrible this ice cream tastes to me. Sure, it might be good if you like red licorice, but I think it will disappoint all that think it is pomegranate flavor. It is probably the fish oil and fish gelatin that messes the flavor up and really not an expected ingredient in ice cream, but not surprising since it says Omega-3 on the front of the box.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Safeway Easter Shaped Dipped Sugar Cookies

I first discovered the dipped sugar cookies at Safeway the day after Valentine's Day this year when I found them marked down for a $1 per package. The day after St. Patrick's I got the same deal on the holiday cookies, but no dipped ones were ever available for that holiday. For several weeks now I have been eying the Easter dipped sugar cookies, but I refused to cave in and pay $4.99 for a package. Thus I stuck to the day after the holiday grocery shopping and was rewarded with them being marked down to $1. I got a package for me and a separate package for my little brother this time since he loved the Valentine's ones that I brought on a road trip to share with him.

The dipped sugar cookies are the regular bakery seasonal design cookies with colorful sprinkles and a chocolate dipped coating on the bottom. I tend to dislike the shape sugar cookies because they are too hard for my liking, but the dipped chocolate seems to keep them soft. The only better cookies are the Peanut Butter Munchies I make for Christmas every year. Plus, the price of the day after the holiday cannot be beat considering I could barely make them myself cheaper and if I did that the dipping chocolate part would be quite messy.