I know, I have a backlog of boxes in my food review trunk, but what can I say? I love getting mail. I promise I’ll be back to sniffing out weird sandwiches sooner than you can say “questionable health codes”, gang. On the docket we have a Chicago trip, packed with more sausages and Michelin stars than a gay chef’s convention, and more tea to satisfy my endless, undying tame hedonism. For now, Tea Box Express.TBE, the generous benefactor of the box, curates boxes with tea as the focal point, but never the sole player; utilizing pairings like cookies, popcorn, candies, and adding tea tools for the easiest experience. You don’t want to be the ‘before’ video in an infomercial, right? Spilling tea leaves all over yourself? Exactly. So when I opened the box and found an infuser, I was pretty jazzed. The theme for September is apple harvest, so everything’s coming up fruity. Well, fruit and caramel.While my personal September themes err toward beer, darkness, and all things birthday, I appreciated the riff off of this. Cinnamon and caramel were not ignored, and the curation of companies was eclectic and high in quality. I found myself most partial to the caramel apple popcorn by Roni-Sue Chocolates. I’m not the biggest popcorn fan, but this was fantastic. The ratio of dried apple pieces to popcorn was almost equal, and the addition of salt really offset the cider syrup.The more I snacked, the less this resembled a tea box, so if you’re looking for straight-up tea, you’re better off elsewhere. After making warm caramel and popcorn s’mores with the Fruute salted caramel shortbread and eating more popcorn, I’d nearly forgotten there was tea inside until I found the full tin of cinnamon apple spice tea from Full Leaf Tea Company. It was simplistic, but delightful and easy to brew, and a great value considering the tea alone was $8, never mind the rest of the box. Definitely one I’ll go back to as the weather gets cold.