Espresso Tea Shots – Teaspressa

tea shotsAllison DeVane likes her espresso, but not the headaches she suffers when she consumes too much coffee, so she invented Teaspressa – a method of brewing tea shots that mimic coffee drinks. Basically, tea shots are concentrated tea blends that, when brewed properly, create a thicker, richer tea. The resulting tea shots can then get mixed to make coffee-like drinks like espresso, cappuccino, macchiato, and latte. Devane seeks an investment from the Sharks in episode 720.

Coffee is a diuretic, meaning it causes water to be drawn from the body. The diuretic effect, coupled with caffeine, can cause headaches in some people. Tea, on the other hand, hydrates the body. Many tea blends have the same amount of caffeine (or more) than a typical cup of coffee, but don't cause headaches in sensitive people. Making a tea “espresso” would satisfy folks with that coffee craving without the worry of after effects.

So far, Teaspressa is only available on the Teaspressa website and in a few bakeries and gourmet food shops in Devane's native Phoenix. She's also a fixture at local farmer's markets, makes her tea shots at a local cafe and organizes events like birthday parties, corporate gatherings, and wedding or baby showers.

The concoctions she creates with Teaspressa sound delicious. All the recipes and instructions on brewing and preparing different varieties of tea shots can be found on her website, too. At $12-$15 for a little over three ounces of tea, Teaspressa is in the “premium tea” category. For people with sensitivity to coffee, it looks like a good alternative, but will the Sharks agree?

My Take on Tea Shots

Every morning, I get a large caramel swirl from Dunks. For the rest of the day, I usually sip my home-brewed Arnold Palmers: sun brewed iced tea with one scoop of lemonade mix per gallon. I like them both! The coffee gets me moving and the iced tea keeps me hydrated and refreshed.

Sometimes, after a nice dinner out, I'll have an espresso or a cappuccino with desert, but not too often. I don't suffer from coffee headaches, so my interest in Teaspressa would be novel at best. Would I try one – probably. Would I work tea shots into my daily routine – probably not. If I suffered from coffee headaches, I'd be far more likely to work Teaspressa into my daily routine. For coffee headache sufferers, I think it's a great product.

Will the Sharks take a Shot on Teaspressa?

There are three reasons why I think Teaspressa won't get a deal from a Shark.

The first is the business hasn't gotten enough reach yet. The product is in less than a dozen locations in one city; that level of market penetration doesn't give the Sharks enough proof of concept to invest. The “it's too early” objections are already echoing in my mind. Unless online sales are big, this will be a problem.

The second reason is Teaspressa isn't really proprietary. The tea blends look and sound yummy, but there are hundreds of gourmet tea blends in a very crowded market. What Devane has done is perfect a brewing method and created coffee drink style recipes around it. She shares her recipes openly on her website, so anybody could copy the method. I think she'd do better selling pre-brewed tea shots.

The last reason is the Teaspressa website doesn't have that “I got a deal on Shark Tank ‘feel'” to it. I can't really quantify that statement, it's just something I notice when I do my research. If she got a deal, there would be more locations carrying her products listed on the site.

If DeVane wants to take Teaspressa beyond where it is now, she has a long journey. A Shark could certainly help get her there, but I don't think that happens.

About Rob Merlino

Entrepreneur, auteur, raconteur. Rob Merlino is a blogger and writer who enjoys the Shark Tank TV show and Hot Dogs. A father of five who freelances in a variety of publications, Rob has a stable of websites including Shark Tank Blog, Hot Dog Stories, Rob Merlino.com and more.

Comments

  1. The actual product looks really interesting after reading up on it. She did such a horrible job explaining basically nothing about it. Terrible presentation.

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