Aldi’s cousin Trader Joe’s has some great year-round tea options as well as excellent seasonal teas. I’m especially a fan of TJ’s “fox tea” or Harvest Blend Herbal Tea. While the harvest tea is an excellent drink if I don’t want to caffeinate myself, I’ve now discovered a new favorite tea from Trader Joe’s for the days when I want an extra burst of energy. The flavor combination may sound odd, but I recently tried Trade Joe’s maple espresso black tea, and it’s surprisingly good.
Trader Joe’s Maple Espresso Black Tea Blend cost $2.99 at the time of publication for a box of 20 individually wrapped tea bags, or about 15 cents per tea bag. This is a product of Canada.
Ingredients are: black tea, espresso coffee, natural flavors, roasted chicory, dandelion root, and fenugreek seed.
To brew, bring water to just below boiling. Pour water over one tea bag and brew for 5-8 minutes. Remove the tea bag and add sweetener if desired.
To make a maple espresso black tea latte, brew two tea bags in 1/3 cup of hot water and steep for 8 minutes. Remove the tea bags and fill the rest of the cup with warm milk or dairy alternative. Sweeten if desired.
I wasn’t sure about this tea flavor at first. Maple and coffee both in my tea? But I figured I’d give it a try, and I’m glad I did.
When you first open a packet with a tea bag, it smells vaguely like licorice, which could be due to the chicory in the ingredients list. When you dunk a tea bag into hot water, it smells lovely, with faint coffee shop notes. The licorice-like smell also mostly disappears once you add the tea bag to hot water.
I made this as both a traditional tea with just hot water, and I also tried making it as a latte. Both options are good, with the latte simply being creamier and more caffeinated (and the latte was also very tempting for the Aldi Reviewer Cat). The tea tastes like what it is: black tea and espresso. The maple notes are faint, with a brief espresso flavor being the dominant aftertaste. It also doesn’t have much of a licorice-like taste even though the tea bags have that sort of smell, which is good for me because I don’t like black licorice.
I’m not a coffee fan, but I do really like this tea. I also like the Simply Nature Dirty Chai Tea Latte Concentrate (which includes a shot of espresso) that Aldi sometimes sells. This Trader Joe’s tea is in a similar vein to the Aldi tea lattes, although without the excessive amounts of added sugar that Aldi tea lattes contain. If you like the smell of coffee but can’t quite tolerate the taste of a regular brewed cup, this might be for you because it only has mild notes of that bitter coffee flavor. If you appreciate both coffee and tea, this might also be for you because it’s the best of both worlds.
This is about the closest I’ll come to drinking coffee. Yes, it has to be disguised as tea for me to drink it. I’m glad I found this, and I just might have to pick up an extra box before it disappears from Trader Joe’s for the year.
Trader Joe’s Maple Espresso Black Tea Blend is a nice mix of tea and coffee, with very, very faint maple notes. While it may sound odd to mix tea, espresso, and maple flavoring, this tea actually is quite good. It can be made as a traditional tea with just hot water, or the box has directions for making an indulgent tea latte by adding milk. Both are good. If you like tea and/or coffee (and I don’t even like coffee all that much), this is definitely worth a try.