Flavored tea – Why few have enjoyed a good flavored iced tea when they dine out
The other day I was dining at a local casual dining restaurant that prides itself on quality, gourmet food. Out of curiosity, I decided to order a Peach tea, their flavored iced tea offering. Big mistake. It was so bad I couldn’t finish it. It tasted like someone had mixed heaping teaspoons of peach flavored saccharin with some really stale tea. What drives me crazy is that so many restaurants are great at using quality ingredients for their food items, yet when it comes to non-alcoholic beverages, the best option is either a Coke or the lame syrup based concoction I had posing as a flavored iced tea. This particular restaurant has great food, but their flavored iced tea offering is below average at best. The sad reality is that this is the scenario in 90% of casual dining restaurants.
Unfortunately, flavored tea gets a bad rap primarily because the low quality product offered by the restaurants is what is available to the consumer. Most people get their flavored iced tea experiences from a restaurant. I feel compelled to educate the tea drinker and let them know that there are some really good flavored iced teas available. For the time being, tea drinkers won’t find quality flavored tea in their favorite restaurant and will have to resort to the web. Fortunately, we are also in the process of educating many in the restaurant industry and encouraging them to step up their non-alcoholic beverage offering, specifically flavored iced teas. One day, the consumer will be able to enjoy an all natural, raspberry flavored iced tea at their favorite restaurant without sending it back.