October 6, 2010

Review: Celestial Seasonings Half & Half Perfect Iced Tea K-Cups

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We continue our iced beverage reviews with one of the latest “Brew Over Ice” K-Cups to hit the market… Celestial Seasonings Half and Half Perfect Iced Tea K-Cups. Their “half & half” consists of half lemonade (made with real lemon, or “true lemon” as they claim on the packaging) along with half black tea. As is now common with the entire Brew Over Ice lineup, these K-Cups are designed to be used with either the 6oz or 8oz settings on your Keurig brewer (which makes us wonder if the 4oz iced beverage setting on certain models will ever be used again)

Upon brewing, strong aromas of lemon quickly emerged and became the primary scent. At least now we know what the whole “true lemon” signage on the packaging was about since the aroma really is that of real fresh-cut lemons & not something artificial. Taste was what surprised us the most. We kept thinking of our less than ideal experience with Celestial Seasonings Unsweetened Black Iced Tea K-Cups and were afraid that this would just be that K-Cup with “more lemon” dumped-in.

Were we ever glad to see that wasn’t the case! The first thing to hit your palate is the lemonade which was lightly sweetened by cane sugar, then the notes of a smooth black tea came through underneath. A nice morphing of flavors from lemon to black tea was quite pleasing compared to previous offerings. This was more on-par with some of the bottled iced teas you’d find at a local corner store. We were quite simply amazed that FINALLY, we had an iced tea K-Cup without any unpleasant bitter bite! The consensus around the Single Serve Coffee kitchens appeared to be the same… everyone loved these new K-Cups and wouldn’t mind drinking them all day.


Body was a nice amber/golden honey color with tinges of yellow & orange when held to a light source. Acidity was kept at bay until the aftertaste where it was accentuated a bit by the dryness of the tannins in the black tea. Mouth feel was smooth throughout even after the ton of ice we threw in had melted and speaking of melted ice, the flavor was still going strong afterwards as well. Nice!


We feel that any coffee… uh… we mean, tea drinker will probably enjoy these K-Cups quite a bit and since they taste so close to a bottled iced tea, we think that everyone from adults to kids alike will probably love these K-Cups too. Suited best for those who like a strong lemon flavor in their iced teas with just the perfect hint of sugar thrown in.

  • Aroma – 10 – With an even stronger lemon scent than the previous Sweet Lemon Iced Tea K-Cups, you’d have to sniff a lemon at a grocery store to replicate this aroma. Excellent.
  • Acidity – 6 – Mostly present in aftertaste, fairly muted throughout if you don’t count the natural citric acidity of the lemonade.
  • Body – 10 – One of the nicest color combinations we’ve seen in an unlit glass with golden honey colors throughout. Sunburst colors pop when held to a light source.
  • Flavor – 10 – Lemon, lemon and more lemon. Throw this in a bottle, print off a label and this would fit right at home in a corner store. The black tea flavors push through in the 2nd half of the tasting notes, but the first thing you taste is the slightly sweetened lemonade. Spot-on.
  • Mouth Feel – 10 – Smooth throughout. Not only does the mouth feel remain intact after the ice has melted, so does the flavor! That’s what earns this a 10.
  • Coffee Tea Drinker – Suited best for anyone who enjoys a good iced tea with strong lemon flavors and a lightly sweet taste overall. If you like the bottled varieties, you’ll like this.

Overall Rating: 96 - Excellent

Celestial Seasonings really surprised us with these K-Cups since we were expecting more of the same unpleasant bitterness of their previous iced tea K-Cups this time around. Back then, it seemed as if they focused more on promoting the black tea flavor and left out the flavoring. This time, it’s the opposite. They’ve added more flavoring and balanced out the bitter notes of the black tea. This is more what we were hoping for and we feel they likely learned from feedback & other sources in regards to what route they needed to tak. With an offering this delicious, we can’t wait to see what the other new flavors are like and think they’ll likely be “Perfect” indeed.

Celestial Seasonings Half and Half Perfect Iced Tea K-Cups will work in your Keurig Elite B40 Brewer, Keurig B50, Keurig Special Edition Ultra Elite B60, Keurig Platinum B70 Brewer, Breville BKC600XL/BKC700XL Gourmet Single Cup Brewer, and other Keurig K Cup brewers including the Keurig Mini Plus and Keurig Mini B30.

At Celestial Seasonings Half and Half Perfect Iced Tea K-Cups

We would like to take this time to thank Green Mountain Coffee for sending us a box of these K-Cups for the purpose of this review.

Read how we review and rate single-serve coffee and other single-serve coffee beverages here.

A special thanks to SH for providing this Single Serve Coffee staff review.

Read More in: K Cup Reviews | Keurig & K-Cups | Reviews

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Posted by Jay Brewer at October 6, 2010 7:43 AM
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