Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I'm lovin' it - the sweet tea, that is

I want to send a thank-you to McDonald's.

After 30 years, I've managed to grow disgusted with pretty much everything on their menu. While my kids can hardly wait to scarf down their chicken nuggets and fries (something I've done a good job of turning into a "treat" rather than a "routine,") I personally cannot stomach most anything on the menu anymore.

I'm not sure how it happened... "Supersize Me" only kept me away for a few months. But somehow, somewhere along the line, I've finally maxed out the McDonald's I can handle. Apparently I've hit my quota.

Well, other than when it's McRib time.

And now, the sweet tea.

I've always liked sugar in my iced tea, but I've also always been equally happy to drink it without. But I got sucked in by advertising and while visiting one of our local golden arches establishments a few weeks ago, decided to give the sweet tea (which I know to be a southern staple) a try.

So, now I'm hooked. Trying to dissuade myself, I looked up the nutritional information today. It appears the sweetener used is actual sugar. (Check: if it had been anything artificial, my sweet tea days would be over.) And there are 230 calories in one large sweet tea. (Check: Ok, that's a lot... but it's still almost 1/3 of some sodas and less than a lot of my favorite Starbucks drinks, so I'm technically still ahead of the game.) I haven't compared the actual sugar content of the sweet tea to that of soda or my favorite latte.

And then of course there's the cost - $1 for a sweet tea or $4 for a Starbucks nonfat vanilla latte. Hmmmmm....

Interestingly, I also learned that the McDonald's sweet tea has been available in other parts of the country for up to at least a year now. For some reason, I hadn't even thought about that possibility. When we lived in California, McDonald's introduced the fruit and yogurt parfait and "Eddie" commercials to go along with it. A full year later when we were back in central Illinois, they debuted it here. I remember feeling so worldly - I'd been able to buy them for so long already. Ha!

Why is that, I wonder? After all, we're supposed to be considered a magical "test market." Our area got the first crack at clear pepsi and those disposable bibs... why are we getting the shaft from Mickey-D's?

But there must be something going on... two weeks ago the husband and I had lunch at a new deli in Peoria that features sweet tea on their menu. And I noticed a local cafe here in Pekin is advertising it now too.

I find it interesting that in this health-conscious environment we live in, we're all happy to pour about a cup of sugar into our tea and drink it.

Oh well... it's here now, and I'm hooked. Figures. But I guess it could be something worse!


*Jess* said...

Ack! A non-southerner drinking sweet tea!? Looks like McD's got you hooked :) That was too funny!

Tbone said...

A buck a cup? Ever figure what it would cost to make your own? Tea. Sugar. How hard can that be?

Shannon said...

well, that is true and I have been thinking about it!
But I'm definitely one of those people who thinks all food tastes better when someone else cooked or made it... so for me, it's worth the $1 and still way better than my Starbucks habit! :)

Jess - I was thinking of you the first time I tried it! LOL!

Michele Leichtenberg said...

Jerry has at all times in our frig a pitcher of sweet tea (he grew up with it) but I agree that it always tastes better when someone else makes it!!!hee hee

ABEL said...

join my hooked on sweet tea group on face book

ABEL said...


Hooked on Mc Donalds Sweet Tea


Mrs. Manny Ramirez said...

I just started in the blogging and my first post was about this very tasty topic. I love McD's sweet tea.