AriZona Herbal Tonic

Somebody wrote us a while ago and said something like “hey turkeys howsabout shuffling some props toward the unimpeachable flavor of AriZona green tea w/ginseng and honey” and at first I thought: What the hell is up with the interCapping? I’m assuming that capital Z is in there to help differentiate between the beverage company and the great U.S. state, sort of like The Charlatans UK, some sort of out-of-court arrangement, maybe. Then I thought: What the hell is up with AriZona’s website? Is that thing spewed from the darkest bowels of Frontpage or what. And then I thought: I do like that green tea with the honey. Very smooth and subtle, and a kind of classy wraparound label as opposed to the garishness of your beloved cactus drink.

So yesterday I picked up one of the AriZona Herbal Tonics, since I’d never given those a shot. Those are the ones that supposedly improve your Energy, Health, Memory, or Stress (maybe soothe rather than improve on that last one) and are made up to look like those olde tyme cure-all tonics sold to rubes in backwater towns and consisting mostly of ethyl alcohol? And that works for me, because a) you know I like the olde tyme look, and b) I think it’s nice that they analyzed the whole energy drink boom, the whole concept of a beverage being somehow nourishing to the spirit or intellect or mood, and said: “Hey, that sounds like snake oil. Let’s run with that.”

And in fact, the Memory Health Tonic makes no claims at all to help with your memory or anything else. It just says “Memory Health Tonic” and then has a picture of an Einsteinesque scientist working out a complicated math formula next to his crowded table of chemistry equipment — the key attribute of any successful scientist being of course his/her ability to remember things. To sum up, I appreciate this drink’s packaging approach from soup to nuts.

And the flavor? It’s sort of like if they mixed the green-tea-with-honey with the orange-mango from Nantucket Nectars. Which is probably what they did. So kind of diluted, but not diluted with water. I shrank back in terror at its milky color when I first cracked open the lid — its stylish blue bottle disguising its true color till then — but the terror semi-subsided when I started knocking back this sweet elixir.

I noticed no improvement to my memory, exactly as AriZona didn’t promise. Which is probably for the best, since you and I well know there are great swathes of my life that I’d just as soon forget and yes I’m talking about the EPCOT years.