Annette and I stopped by the Food Whole on Thursday after a nice morning walk. I for one like to stop and get a cup of coffee, perhaps something for breakfast (depending on what I had eaten before the walk). This semester I teach on Thursday nights, so I also usually get a frozen dinner to heat up for a pre-class meal at school.
Anyway, whenever I go to Whole Foods, even if it is just for a cup of coffee, I always make the rounds of the store in order to enjoy the various samples. The way I figure it, if I’m going to be paying a premium on my groceries (and actually, the extent to which Whole Foods is “over priced” is debatable, I think), I might as well enjoy all the perks. I had made my way over to the coffee area after picking out a ginger scone (sorta like a breakfast but sorta like a dessert, I guess), and there was a sample station set up for some kind of coffee. “Hmm, I’ll try that,” I was thinking, and as I was fixing myself a tiny cup from the pump thermos, I read the description of what I was about to try and I began to second guess myself.
The product I had poured myself was “TeeccinoÂ®,” a caffeine-free herbal coffee. I picked up one of the brochures they had there about this stuff. Here’s a quote from it:
TeeccinoÂ® (tea-chee-no) is the first herbal coffee belnded from herbs, grains, fruits and nuts that are roasted, ground and brewed just like coffee. Dark, rich, and full-bodied, TeeccinoÂ® brings you all the satisfaction of a robust brew with no caffeine reaction. TeeccinoÂ® tastes mildely sweet from dates and figs, but only has 15 calories per cup! TeeccinoÂ® contains 65 mg of potassium to give your body a natural energy lift.
Worse yet, TeeccinoÂ® comes in a series of flavors, including “Java” (ah, coffee flavored caffeine-free herbal coffee?) and “original.” On sample that morning was Almond Amaretto. Now, to be fair to the TeeccinoÂ® people, I don’t like flavored “non-herbal” coffee, so my impressions of their product may be a bit skewed. Nonetheless, I came away thinking that TeeccinoÂ® tasted a) absolutely nothing like coffee and b) icky.
And I guess the problem I have is the basic premise of the product: why would you want to give up coffee? I mean, sure, maybe you want to cut down on caffine. But that’s what decaf is for. They’re trying to make a comparison between this stuff and “herbal tea,” but the basic difference seems to be that herbal tea tastes good while herbal coffee tastes bad.
BTW, after bitching about this crappy stuff to Annette, I picked up the brochure I am looking at right now. Annette sighed and said “You’re going to blog about that, aren’t you?”