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Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Trader Joe's Organic Cold Brewed Hibiscus Tea & Lemonade Beverage

It's starting to warm up in the southwest, and folks down here will be needing refreshment soon. Whether you'll be mowing lawns like I'm accustomed to, or tilling gravel like they do down here, you'll be craving a cold beverage of some kind. So let me give it to you straight: if you're into drinking flowers, this hibiscus tea lemonade hybrid is pretty darn refreshing.

Although, if you want to get into semantics, I must admit no part of this screams "lemonade" to me. There's just a hint of sweetness, but the lemon element tastes more like plain lemon juice to me. That's not necessarily a bad thing. I do enjoy sweet beverages historically, but not-so-sweet, subtle flavors definitely have their place—and this product embodies that sophisticated, understated ideal perfectly.

There's a surprising amount of sediment on the bottom of the bottle. I'm not even sure what it is: little pieces of hibiscus flowers? It does say "shake well before using" on the label. Whenever I can see visible bits of sediment, I always worry that the beverage will have a gritty texture, but this selection didn't at all—light and smooth all the way.

I'm on record on this blog stating that I don't like hibiscus that much. And it's still not my favorite, but I must say it didn't bother me as much in this case as it has in previous incarnations. I think the sourness of the lemon juice helps balance out the "plantiness" of the flowers.

Since readers have scolded me when I score something that I generally have an aversion to, such as hibiscus, I'll let Sonia do all the rating here. She likes hibiscus just fine, and she gives this drink four stars. So I'll just double her score. If you want to know what I would have given this product: a three, maybe three and a half. Hibiscus still just isn't my thing. I'll take flavored sparkling water over this kind of beverage if I want something unsweet, and I'll reach for a fruit juice blend if I want something a little more sugary. 

If I were hella thirsty, though, you better bet I'd down this bottle in seconds.

Bottom line: 8 out of 10.

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