Milk teas are kind of an indulgence for me. It’s a little embarrassing to admit to drinking them at all, since they basically go against my entire tea philosophy, being pretty much the tea world equivalent of starbucks coffee-like drinks. In other words, with the amount of sweetener and milk dumped in, the percentage of actual tea in these is pretty low. Still, just like every so often I find myself really wanting some diet coke despite knowing that I am basically pickling my insides, sometimes I just want a nice sweet dessert type drink. This is especially true during the winter when you can get these nice and hot (oh, vending machines with hot drinks, you are so awesome) but sometimes it happens in the summer too. Or, as happened today, I might be in a bakery and the only tea that they have that I have yet to do a write up on is a milk tea. So I guess this time it was fate!
I can’t say that I’ve ever been really able to distinguish between different milk teas, they mostly just taste like very lightly tea flavored sweet milk and this one is no different. The whole zero calorie thing is pretty nice, since I think your standard royal milk tea has at an estimate a billion calories. I don’t think it really detracts from the taste, but I’m not exactly a source to be trusted for that sort of thing, since I’m not really able to distinguish the taste of coke and diet coke either. (I can do it with pepsi and diet pepsi though. because diet pepsi is gross) I mean, I’d probably be able to if I drank them side by side (although why would I do that?), but for me the difference isn’t so severe that I can tell when drinking them in isolation.
The biggest problem that I have with milk tea is that after finishing it I could generally do with a drink. That is, it’s thirst-quenching power is so low that it has circled around and actually causes thirst. Also, it’s got kind of a weird aftertaste – I vaguely recall that aftertaste being present in all milk teas, but a this is my first one during this particular visit, I can’t really be sure, perhaps it’s an effect of the artificial sweetener?
All in all, a nice enough tea latte, and definitely a good substitute if you want a cookie or something.