Get that Wild West feel with Wild Chicory Joe from The Tea Spot

When I think of chicory, I think of my favorite western TV shows and movies.  Why?  Well there wasn’t always a good supply of coffee out on the dusty trail, so chicory would be brewed as a substitute.  Chicory and coffee have a long history together, with chicory stretching or replacing coffee when the latter is hard to come by, from Napoleonic France to the American Civil War.  After these coffee-sparse times, some cultures developed a taste for chicory and still brew it alongside or with their coffee today.

I got a chance to try a cup of Wild Chicory Joe from the Tea Spot.  I’m both a coffee fan and a tea lover, so I can appreciate both sides of this story.

Wild Chicory Joe brewed up super fast, as quick and dark as coffee.  The brew was immediately full and fragrant, smelling like savory toasted grains or roasted nuts, over an undertone of more bitter, dirt-road earthiness.  The first sip was a bit daunting: it’s not coffee, it’s not tea, and my taste buds were not sure what to expect.  As I moved onto a second and third and fourth sip, the flavor grew on me.  Beyond the roasted notes, there were flavors like caramel and malt, and a touch of true coffee on the aftertaste.

I could understand how chicory got its start as a coffee replacement.  This brew is dark and bitter, but with a touch of the bright, citrus notes you find in a blond coffee roast.  Unlike coffee, the chicory isn’t oily, instead it brews up with a smooth mouthfeel and a more herbal flavor.

Maybe I’m channeling my favorite westerns, but this cup is distinctly masculine, with nothing floral or astringent, just deep, bold, bitter – pow!  All that said, the chicory does mellow out with some milk and sweetener so you can mix it like your favorite coffee or tea.  And since the chicory is decaf, you can make a latte at any time of day or night.
If you’re looking to switch  from coffee to chicory, this won’t be an easy transition, the chicory isn’t a perfect coffee replacement (not to mention, you’ll be craving the caffeine).  But if you’re bored with your tea or need a break from your coffee, Wild Chicory Joe will be a fascinating cup to try.  A cup of chicory might just be the perfect accessory to have on hand when watching your favorite western or reading your favorite wild west novel.  Happy trails!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: The Tea Spot

Hold onto your hats, coffee lovers! This natural coffee replacement is so darn delicious, you won’t believe your taste buds. Our Wild Chicory Joe brews into a boldly deep herbal tea that masquerades as a strong-brewed cowboy coffee, without any acidity. The roasted chicory root creates a dark espresso base while the chocolate barley malt adds cocoa notes and the fennel adds a little sweetness. Drink it straight or as the bold caffeine-free base for a latte. You might even trick some coffee fanatics into enjoying this cup of herbal tea. Giddy-up and grab some Joe!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Mocha Nut Mate from Adagio Teas. . . .

This is tea’s answer to coffee!

If you like that full, diner coffee feel, but maybe don’t like those jitters, give this maté a try. Maté isn’t a “tea” as such; it’s a different type of plant (also caffeinated). It affects people to varying degrees, so you might want to try this in the morning so it won’t affect your sleep.

The flavor is a little bit of a bitter zing, with a nutty body, and a slight whisp of chocolate. Mate works on me very much, so I am definitely INVOLVED IN MY DAY at this point. Listening to podcasts*, talkin’ tea, and making designs 100%.

* Where IS Richard Simmons? The podcast about his abrupt disappearance is really interesting. His past and connection to the public is REALLY COMPELLING. Everyone he knows is a CHARACTER — as is he, obviously. I am chomping these developments down like peanut butter cups. Which I will obviously have to then dance off to the oldies.

This tea reminds me of Denny’s somehow. Like when you and your friends are out preposterously late and there’s literally nowhere else to go. So you wander out to Denny’s because it’s open and 1 AM. And of course, because you’re a little stupid and/or drunk, you order yourself COFFEE. Which sounds delicious, until it’s 4 AM, your friends are gone, and you can’t sleep. So you listen to the Backstreet Boys until the sun rises, eat breakfast in the dorm basement’s middle-of-the-road dining commons, and then sleep the rest of the day.

I speak from experience here. I an a connoisseur of late-night 24-hour establishments. Our Denny’s was the best one. It was by far the most beautiful one I’ve ever been to, and the staff was friendly, regardless of the hour or busyness. Note that I said “was” — even though it was one of the most popular places in my town, it somehow lost its license or something (???) and is gone.

I’ll just have to fill in with this tea.

I’m not sure how I’ll fill the hole in my heart left by Richard Simmons, though. Maybe a different tea. I’ll let you know if I figure it out.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Mate
Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

The mellow chicory-like character of our Brazilian toasted mate is a perfect platform for a favorite indulgence: chocolate! Add a bit of hazelnut and you have the perfect treat. Great straight up or enhanced with cream and sugar. If you’re a fan of chocolate mate teas, we invite you to give this formula a try. Please note that all Mate varieties contains caffeine; we would not suggest it as a nightcap.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Vanilla Nut Herbal Coffee Tea Bags from Teeccino

I’ve been wanting to try Teeccino for quite awhile, but I could never find it at any groceries, even health food stores. Teeccino is a caffeine free coffee alternative made with chicory root and other herbs and flavors. Some blends have carob and dandelion root as well. It’s something a lot of coffee drinkers switch to when they’re trying to lower their coffee intake. A box of Teeccino practically hopped off the shelf at Natural Grocers, and I just had to try it. I chose vanilla nut. The vanilla nut has carob, chicory, and also dates and almonds!

As the weather cools, I crave black teas more, and I try to watch my caffeine intake, so this is perfect. I made myself a cup as soon as I got home. First of all, it looks just like coffee. And while it doesn’t smell exactly like coffee, it definitely has a tempting, rich and deep smell. And I could smell the vanilla right away. I let the bag steep for around five or six minutes, and added a little raw sugar, and a little coconut milk. It tastes so vanilla-y with a little nutty taste in the background. I love it, and this will be a staple in my life in these upcoming cooler months

As someone who was a serious coffee addict, I would recommend this to anyone who might be trying to cut back. It hits that sweet spot that comes from a coffee craving. I can’t wait to try their other flavors!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Teeccino 


The creaminess of vanilla accented by golden roasted almonds, dates & figs.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!