Sipping on the iced tea bandwagon

It’s early August and hot as all get-out (at least here in my neck of the woods in the Northern Hemisphere), so I’m rolling out the iced tea bandwagon. Hop aboard and let me know what you’ve been drinking so far this summer.

As for me, I’ve been enjoying:

Strawberry Kiwi from the Georgia Tea Company: One of my favorites from last summer; it’s still going strong this year. Sometimes I add some of their Pai Mu Tan white tea leaves to the infuser; it ups the antioxidant power of the tea and iced tea 2doesn’t affect its flavor. It’s a good one for kids as they like its fruity flavor and cheery red hue. Kind of like Kool-Aid but way more healthful for them. One thing I love about this company is that they sell samples of their tea, so you can try a number of different varieties without breaking the bank.

Teavana’s Blueberry Kona Pop: This blend of rooibos and herbal tea is a frequently sampled iced tea at their stores, and I really enjoy its refreshing flavors. But I had a cup of the Kona Pop (herbal) by itself recently, and if you like pineapple, you’ll love its fruity zing. I’m of a mind to buy these two separately and that way can enjoy them together or solo.

GTC’s Midsummer Night’s Dream: I had this first hot during the winter months and remember thinking it would be terrific iced — and indeed, it is. I guess I must be on a fruit-lovin’ roll because this one combines black and green tea, papaya, pineapple and strawberry bits, and I am loving it to bits.

Zhena’s Gypsy Tea Mojito Mint: A hint of mint, citrus and rum flavor this green tea. I like it made a bit stronger since the flavor here is on the subtle side. But you could certainly jazz it up on your own with a spot of lime juice or something else (wink, wink), if you’d like. I find this soothing and refreshing after an evening meal.

What about you, what iced tea or hot (or other kinds of beverages) are you enjoying right now?

  • Jaime says:

    Hot teas for me year round! I’ve been going through a ginger green tea phase…nice and spicy! Once in a while, I might have an iced matcha tea, made from the ground powder.

  • edpgypsy says:

    I have been enjoying The Republic of Tea Hibiscus assortment. I even bought a “iced tea shaker” (cocktail shaker) to make shaken iced tea and oddly enough, shaking it up just makes it taste better.

  • Jennifer Smith says:

    My mom came up with a nice combo. Pot of boiling water plus 2 bags of lemon zinger, 2bags of raspberry zinger, and three English breakfast tea bags . Steep thoroughly and add about two or three cups of sugar (optional) also optional but nice are some fresh lemon slices dropped in as it’s cooling. Pour into gallon or better size pitcher and add more water. Chill ,ice it and enjoy!

  • Musette says:

    Hi, sweetie! I just got through making some Passion/ginger iced tea…and I’ve been drinking scads of hot minted tea – from my pots of mint. And lots of water with mint and lemon. And ice. Lots of ice. And lemonade. With mint. And ice. xoxoxoA

  • Mary K says:

    I’m a northerner and I also drink iced tea all year long (plain black tea,unsweetened, maybe with lemon). I also like iced rooibos tea. And I would definitely like to try the gypsy rose tea mentioned above..

  • tammy says:

    Seldom drink hot tea unless it’s really really cold outside; I drink iced tea all day long, all year long, and it has to be sun tea. (Which is not easy come wintertime, let me tell ya)

    I prefer Paradise Tropical Tea, but plain ol’ Lipton’s or Luzianne will do me just fine. And unlike most Southerners, I don’t care for sweet tea ( blasphemy!)

  • One of my favorite of Zhena’s teas is the Gypsy Rose black tea. It’s got a very distinct rose note in the flavor, which I like a lot. Their Hazelnut chai is tasty too.

    One thing I’ve really been into lately, while not a tea, is italian sodas that I get from Central Market (not sure if these exist outside of Texas). They had one for spring that was blackcurrant elderflower, and it’s delicious. (If you’ve ever had St.Germain liqueur, you’ll have some idea what this tastes like. If you haven’t, get thee to a liquor store posthaste!) I also liked the lavender lemongrass one too. They’re also good for mixing with gin.

  • Kandice says:

    I’ve never heard of the Zhena teas, but I’ll have to try and find them. The Mojito Mint sounds wonderful. I have been drinking a lot of matcha green tea soy lattes lately. They are refreshing even when hot. And like many others here, there’s just something so comforting in a hot drink. Thanks for the post!

  • Tara says:

    Kusmi tea fan, hot or cold. This summer it has been Violet, Anastasia and Rose on the main rotation. Yum!

  • Dina C. says:

    Hey Ann, I’ve been making traditional iced tea with decaf black tea and a dash of sugar for myself and the kids. But I also drink a lot of hot tea in the summer like Poodle. I got a new one this summer from Capital Teas called Havana. It’s like a mojito: green tea plus bit of dried mint and dried lime rind. It makes a nice cup of hot tea or iced tea.

  • rosarita says:

    Hi Ann – my husband makes his own blend of iced tea and keeps a big pitcher on hand all the time. I know there’s green tea and mint, not sure of the rest. I have some occasionally but I mainly just drink water. My little rural Midwest town has a large Latino population and we have a lot of great hole in the wall Mexican restaurants – a couple of them make their own orchata and I can’t resist, even though I know all the sugar is bad for me, same way I have to visit the root beer stand every summer. Draft root beer in a cold mug is heaven on earth 🙂

    • JanLast says:

      Rosarita, Amen to the ice cold root beer. There is not much better on a hot summer day. I found BPAL’s Stimulating Sassafras Strengthener (not to drink) perfume oil and have been dabbing it on a paper towel for the bottom of the wastebaskets. When you pass by, you get a tiny root beer smell.

      • rosarita says:

        That sounds really good, I’m so overwhelmed by BPAL’s website that I’ve never ordered anything. Jessica Simpson Fancy Nights has a bit of root beer smell.

  • Portia says:

    Hey there Ann,
    I love a hot coffee or tea in all weathers, I know it’s weird but hot drinks just calm me down.
    Portia xx

    • Ann says:

      Hiya, Portia! You are so right — there is something very soothing about wrapping your hands around a cup of something warm and calming. It’s hard to be stressed out for very long when sipping a favorite drink. What are your most-liked tea brands down there?

  • poodle says:

    I always find Zhena’s teas to be somewhat weak.
    I haven’t bought any new teas for the summer. I’m trying to work through what I’ve got. Oddly enough I still like to drink hot tea even when it’s hot out. Green tea has been at the top of my list lately and I’ve been enjoying an occasional cup of sweet rose tulsi tea which smells like perfume.

    • Ann says:

      Howdy, Poodle! I find the Zhena’s black teas and chais to be a bit more robust than some of their flavored whites and greens. I think they try to use natural-type flavorings when possible, and those probably tend to be more subtle than the bolder artificial flavors/sweeteners that some teas have. That tulsi tea sounds nice; I like the idea of a bit o’ perfume in my cup. 🙂

  • Liz K says:

    My MIL brought some Moonlight Sonata from Dragonfly Tea Co. last time they went to do wine tasting stuff. I liked it a bunch hot, but now that it is sweat city outside have really been enjoying it iced. It is a black and green blend with rose hips, pineapple, strawberry, and papaya. I really tend to like fruity teas in the summer because they are already slightly sweet and I’m from the part of the world that drinks iced tea with tons of sugar. I try to be a good girl but still find myself putting sugar in my breakfast tea (I’m sorry, I just have to) and a little maple syrup in my iced tea.
    I also find myself drinking a lot of genmaicha in the summer. Something about that popcorn flavor of the toasted rice is really refreshing – oh, and it doesn’t need sugar so makes me feel virtuous. On second thought, I probably drink just as much in the winter when it is warming and would recommend it anytime tea is discussed. Guess there isn’t a wrong weather for it 😉

    • Ann says:

      Yum, Liz, that Moonlight Sonata sounds yummy (and I do love that name, too). I’m with you; gotta have a little sweetener in my tea, and I must try the maple syrup as well. But it is nice if the blend is sweet enough that you don’t need it.

    • Liz K says:

      Forgot to add that I am also a sucker for the bottled unsweetened jasmine tea. I am too lazy to brew good, non-bitter jasmine tea at home, I would have to pay attention to temperature and steeping time and not get distracted.

  • einsof says:

    matcha, matcha, matcha. 😉 and Yogi SuperAntioxidant. sort of pedestrian, so you’ve inspired me to seek out something a it more inspiring to the palette. cheers!

    • Ann says:

      Glad you’re enjoying the matcha, and that Yogi sounds interesting; what does it taste like? I have a green and white blend that doesn’t thrill me flavorwise, so I’m always looking for ways to jazz it up.

  • bevfred says:

    I like what JanLast had to say! I haven’t had a Moscow Mule for a long, long time.

  • JanLast says:

    We ran across our old copper mugs, went to the ditch bank, whacked at a bunch of fresh spearmint, got freshly squeezed lime juice from Whole Foods, headed to the liquor store for vodka and ginger beer. Woo Hoo! Moscow Mules. I’d forgotten how refreshing they are. I also add that lime juice to Ten-Ren Tea’s Hibiscus Spice tea, iced, since you can’t drink vodka all the time.

    • Ann says:

      Wow, Jan! It sounds like you are all set there! I rarely drink but it does sound very cooling and refreshing. Must try that Hibiscus Spice tea now, as it sounds quite nice. Thanks!