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David Rio Tiger Spice Chai

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating


An image of David Rio Tiger Spice Chai in its packaging.

Nothing beats the aroma, flavor and texture of homemade masala chai, but Tiger Spice Chai is one of the most impressive instant chais on the market today.

Marko Goodwin
David Rio offers seven types of instant chai (also known as "masala chai" or, incorrectly, as "chai tea"). Of the four I've tried, Tiger Spice is, hands down, my favorite. Read on to find out why.

Tasting Notes -- I tasted all four David Rio instant chais with hot water. They can also be made with hot milk or prepared on ice.

Appearance & Aroma

When mixed with hot water, Tiger Spice Chai is a warm cream-tan color with a foamy top. The aroma is surprisingly rich, with chai's classic sweet-spicy balance.


Even prepared with water, Tiger Spice Chai is very creamy. Sweetness kicks in first, followed by cardamom, clover, black tea and various other spices. The finish is almost exactly like cardamom milk tea with honey. Overall, Tiger Spice is very satisfying, without being as syrupy sweet as most concentrates.

Nutritional Information

Each convenient pack makes a single serving of chai. Tiger Spice contains no artificial flavors, hydrogenated oils or trans fats, but it does contain some corn syrup solids in the creamer used to give it its thick texture and rich flavor. People with soy allergies should note that it contains soy lecithin. Black tea lovers should note that (unlike some "chai" mixes) it does contain actual powdered black tea. When mixed with water, each serving contains 140 calories, four grams of fat (two of which are saturated fat) and 23 grams of sugar.

Overall Opinion

Tiger Spice Chai is not as good as homemade masala chai, but it's very impressive for a powder! It's better than most instant chais and concentrates, and it's incredibly easy to make at the office or on the go. I prefer Tiger Spice Chai to David Rio's Elephant Vanilla Chai, sugar-free Orca Spice Chai and Toucan Mango Chai.
Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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