Though the hard seltzer craze doesn’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon, Southern fast-food chain Bojangles has taken a different approach. Aside from its signature Cajun-seasoned fried chicken, Bojangles is famous for its sweet tea. So Bo did the only thing that made sense. It teamed up with Appalachian Mountain Brewery, a brewing company from North Carolina, and created Bojangles Hard Sweet Tea, a 5% ABV adult beverage.
This isn’t exactly a Bojangles seltzer. It’s sweet tea alright, and it’s certainly not a zero-sugar situation (each can is about 200 calories). Unfortunately, these things are unavailable at your local Bojangles. Luckily, grocery stores have it, so I grabbed a pack right away. Here’s how it went.
My friends, this is one of the biggest mysteries I’ve ever experienced. With nearly every canned alcoholic beverage I’ve ever consumed (and I've tried a lot, from High Noon hard seltzer to Topo Chico hard seltzer to Finnish Long Drink), there has been an order of operations. You take a sip, you taste some sort of flavor, and then you’re left with an alcohol-based aftertaste.
Different story here. Alcohol is the first thing you taste. Hell, actually. Dark, dark hell, steeped in sour water and cane sugar. It all happens so fast, like you took a sip out of a mixed drink left over from last night’s college party. It’s sweet, sour, and bitter all once, and then before you’re done processing it, it all fades. Fast. It’s one of those as-mysteriously-as-he-arrived-he-was-gone situations.
What you’re left with is the taste of Bojangles sweet tea. I don’t know what’s going on here. Sip after sip, this happened. Horrific boozy flavor at first, standard sweet tea at the end. Just the complete opposite of how these things normally go.
Interestingly enough, it’s far better at room temperature. Not sure what the deal with that one is, either.
What, was I not gonna grab some Bojangles food and try them together? Of course I did. Because Bojangles plays a fun little game where it includes a week’s worth of salt in a single order of fries, I thought the hard tea would help to balance out the saltiness, much like actual sweet tea does.
Wrong again. This seemed to amplify the powers of the salt. Each sip made it taste even more loaded with sodium. Every attempt I made to turn this into a drinkable beverage just seemed to make it grow stronger, like a hydra. Cut off one head and two more shall rise.
DO NOT DRINK THE BOJANGLES HARD SWEET TEA pic.twitter.com/aWmCpet9HY— kate bush's husband (blue checkmark) (@airbagged) March 15, 2023
Big surprise ending, eh? I hated these. Don’t drink them. Who is drinking them, I wonder? And where? Are you BYOBing at your local Bojangles? Are you hitting the drive-thru and bringing some tenders home for a nice meal and beverage pairing?
Most unhinged of all, are you drinking these independent of a Bojangles meal? Are you getting blasted off Bojangles hard tea at the club? Rolling up to the barbecue with a sixer of Boj in your hands? No. Of course not.
And the hangover … oh my. Imagine the hangover.
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