(3 / 5)
Tea is one of my major indulgences in life; no matter how broke I am (and trust me, I’ve known the proper definition for broke), I almost always find a way to wiggle into a nice box of tea and just enough honey to set off the taste. I try to avoid soda pop and other such sugary goodies, so tea is the primary indulgence – and I’ve tried about every single off-the-shelf budget tea available. Plus a few high-quality good ones. No doubt about it, Bigelow Pomegranate Pizzazz falls into that former category.
I’m generally not a huge fan of fruit teas as hot teas. Most of them are awesome, but as iced tea either straight or mixed with plain black or green tea. Bigelow’s Pomegranate Pizzazz breaks the mold a little bit on that count. It’s actually good hot. Not that the others aren’t good, but this one is actually better hot than cold.
To be honest, shopping the cheap fruit teas often means bringing home something that’s either sour or over-spiced that has a little undertone of fruity flavor. Too many times I’ve purchased teas promising “peach”, “mango”, “berry” or the like only to be disappointed with…well, absolutely nothing of the sort. The good news is that if you like pomegranate, then Pomegranate Pizzazz truly will deliver a taste similar to what you’d expect. It’s still a dried, herbal flavor of course, but one that’s distinctly pomegranate. It’s an overall mild taste too, which is great for mixing or enjoying with a meal.
Usually, orange and apple teas are the only ones that taste much like they’re supposed to in this “budget tea” category, so it’s nice that Pomegranate Pizzazz weighs in with a flavor that’s at least halfway what it claims to be. It’s discernibly “pomegranate.” That said, I am afraid to report that the “pizzazz” got lost somewhere along the way. Maybe I’m just spoiled with nice strong teas, but this one is decidedly weak and unremarkable.
The tea is still strong enough to make a half-decent iced tea, which is a definite plus during our triple-digit Wyoming summer. Besides that, it’s rare that I feel a hankering for any fruity hot teas beyond my Vanilla Apple White Tea from Celestial Seasonings. Fruit just seems to work better cold in a lot of these teas.
A tea’s aroma is generally a very important part for me, and often the high point of the drinking experience – if it’s the same for you, prepare to be disappointed with the ambient odor during you Bigelow Pomegranate Pizzazz experience. The scent is a very mild herbal version of pomegranate, but it’s certainly nothing to brag about.
So, love it, hate it or something in between, it’s always a good idea to know what you’re actually drinking. In Pomegranate Pizazz, you’ll enjoy a blend of (from the box itself) apple, hibiscus, blackberry leaves, natural pomegranate and other natural flavors, orange peel, licorice root, plus natural pomegranate and apple juice. The package also further informs potential drinkers that this tea is completely gluten-free. Did I get all the pertinent information? Feel free to leave me a comment if not and I’ll track down anything I missed.
This tea is sold in packages of 20 or 28 fully sealed individually-wrapped teabags, complete with the handy string and paper tab to aid in tea bag removal. As I’ve mentioned in the past, this is the least environmentally friendly packaging option out there, but probably the best if you have to pack all your teas together or have multiple people fondling the bags. To be fair, though, the Bigelow company does have other sustainability initiatives in place, so judge for yourself environmental-wise. Each box costs between $2.00 and $3.00, depending on the source and the size of the box. If you can’t get it locally or want to add it to your Amazon grocery subscription or Amazon Prime Pantry, then buy it in bulk through this link.
The package suggests brewing the tea in hot water for three minutes, I personally just let it sit and steep while I drink the entire cup. Obviously, doing this destroys any chance of getting a second cup from the same teabag. Pomegranate Pizzazz does get a little bitter towards the end of a strong cup too – I’m actually twisted enough to like a bit of bitter, but pull the teabag on time if that’s not you. Throw in some honey if you want to bring out the fruity flavor a bit, but a completely unadulterated cup seems to yield the most pomegranate-y taste.
Overall, this is one of the better fruity herbal teas brewed up hot (with the exceptions of apple and orange teas, that is. When I say “fruity teas,” think berry or melon with the occasional peach thrown in, since citrus just seems to deserve its own designation. It’s still just mediocre on the grand scale of hot teas/tisanes. Sadly, it’s also mediocre on the grand scale of iced teas. It’s included in my tea collection mostly for a change of pace and a little added selection, but you might not want to get it if you’re down to your last tea dollars.
Will I buy another box when I get through my trial 20 teabags? Likely not, though repeat purchases are possible after an extended break. It’s also neutral enough for mixing, so future experiments may turn into happy results. Bigelow also offers some Pomegranate Pizzazz recipes that I’m going to have to try and comment back on. That said, I have quite a few other teas that are just a bit better at either iced or hot, and I really don’t have much need for one that’s just average in both.