Fifty years ago, as a rebellious freshman at a conservative Lutheran liberal arts college, I was suddenly faced with the prospect of three term papers and four final exams. Having spent most of my free time seeking out “hippie tea houses” and Vietnam “Conflict” protests (not studying the writings of St. Augustine as encouraged), it was panic time. Flunking out would return me to my tiny hometown where there were neither hippie tea houses nor war protests.

Enter Caffeine

In 1971, coffee came from three places: Folgers, Maxwell House, and Yuban. Even triple-strength brew could not put a dent in the mountain of work ahead me, coming due in just seven days. No, this was a job for Vivarin. The end justified the means: I managed to eke out a B average. While I do not recall the topics for those papers, I vividly remember the caffeine jitters profoundly impacting my ability to manage the manual Olivetti typewriter.

Caffeine remains the drug of choice for clarity and focus. One can purchase caffeine-enhanced mineral water and energy bars. Ready-to-drink (RTD) espresso drinks boast “4x caffeine.” Energy drinks are branded with names alluding to their powers: Monster, Rock Star, Zombie. Most of these products deliver on the caffeine – and live up to their names – but fail the taste test. Apparently, the end justifies the means.

Unboxing of the Zest Teas

Enter Zest Tea

Zest Tea is available in a carbonated RTD (didn’t I say these were going to get popular?) or convenient sachets, and the flavor names do not make my heart race in unpleasant anticipation. My favorite flavor in the sachets is Spicy Masala Chai. Warming and fragrant, like a hug for the body. The Blue Lady has a citrus hint reminding me of fruity Earl Grey. Although the caffeine on board is triple the load of typical black tea (150mg), I am refreshed, focused, and anxiety free due to the additional L-Theanine (100mg) to balance it out. The RTD product has fizz, a hint of flavor on the palate, and caffeine. It does not have calories and you won’t be plagued by your stomach doing the polka. 

Finally, a brain- and energy-boosting beverage that makes the journey as pleasant as the destination! Earning “Best New Product” at the World Tea Expo, Zest Tea clearly meets the need for a performance beverage that tastes and feels good.

I am saving the Mojito for the holiday and my green-tea-loving guests.

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