Menu

Results for category "Beverages"

20 Articles

Mike’s Classic Margarita

Number two in our on-going margarita series is Mike’s Classic Margarita. Mike’s, in my mind, has always had a high quality product, a great selection of flavors, and never carried the ‘sissy’ stereotypes with which many of the other premium malt beverages were weighed down. The attractive black labeling is masculine enough that your buddies won’t be questioning your gender or sexuality behind your back. Thankfully, this packaging carries over to their Classic Margarita line.

Mike’s Classic Margarita is flavored with real lime juice and agave nectar. This gives it a more authentic flavor than Lime-A-Rita but is a great deal sweeter. In alcoholic beverages, sweetness doesn’t always equal greater drink-ability. Mike’s is somewhat syrupy, and while that tastes great initially, it starts to sit kind of heavy on your stomach by the end of the bottle or can. They’re very filling and I’ve never had the desire to drink more than one in a sitting. Drinking over ice helps remedy this situation a bit.

If you’re looking for a six pack of something to guzzle down before the game at a tailgate party, I’d give this a ‘bleh.’ You’d probably blow up before you reached the gate. If you’re like myself and just want a convenient, fairly authentic tasting night cap, you could do a whole lot worse than Mike’s Classic Margarita. Giving it a ‘Yea,’ so long as you stick to a serving or two.

Official Site

-Jeremy Hobbs

 

Jeremy’s Margarita Series

Lime-A-Rita

I’m starting a short series of margarita flavored beverages. First up, one almost everyone has at least seen, if not tried, is the super popular Lime-A-Rita by Anheuser Busch. I happen to live in a town where these are manufactured, and a few weeks after these were released, Budweiser couldn’t can them fast enough.

Originally, I could only find them in 24 ounce tall cans, usually in the same cooler as those cheap hobo beers. The classic margarita may be my favorite cocktail (at least at the moment), and at first I was afraid to see what those Bud boys had done to my go-to self medication. But the idea of an easy to grab can intrigued me, and curiosity won out. Before I knew it, I was $2 lighter, and cruising out of the convenience store with my Lime-A-Rita wrapped in the protective sleeve of a brown paper bag.

To be honest, it wasn’t that bad, and certainly wasn’t deserving of its spot in the wrong side of the fridge. I wouldn’t go as far as calling it an ultra-premium malt, but it had a nice flavor, even if the beer notes started peeking through as it warmed up. A 24 ouncer will get warm on you unless you chug it, thus the suggestion to ‘try it on ice.’

The flavor is very lime heavy, and I’ll by no means ever mistake it for the real thing, but it’ll do in a pinch, or after a long day when you don’t feel like pulling out the blender. The 8% alcohol content will certainly get the job done in that department. Be careful, it’ll sneak up on you. I’ll give it a tentative ‘Yea!’ You should be pleased so long as you pop that top with reasonable expectations.

Official Site

-Jeremy Hobbs

 

Jeremy’s Margarita Series

Canada Dry Ten

I have to admit, when I first heard about the Ten series that sodas were putting out I was a bit skeptical.  Why not just drink diet soda if there’s only ten calories and two grams of sugar? Or if you don’t mind the calories and sugar why not drink a regular of your favorite brand and enjoy it for what it’s worth?  It didn’t make sense to me.  But when I was shopping at my local Winn-Dixie yesterday and saw mini bottles of Ten sodas I figured “what the heck,” and decided to give it a try knowing that we were doing a review series on them for the site.

When I got my goodies home I decided to start with Canada Dry Ten Ginger Ale. I’ve had both diet and regular versions of this delicious drink and figured I could present a pretty informed opinion.  I was genuinely surprised by what I discovered.  The flavor was wonderfully crisp and lacked any syrupy stickiness that drives me away from sugar-filled sodas.  And with only 10 calories I feel less guilt.

I must admit though that I still prefer diet soda.  Ten sodas taste quite the same as diet sodas so I don’t see why I should ingest 10 extra calories and 2 grams of sugar.  I have to give Ginger Ale Ten a “Meh!”

 Official Site

-Kat Graham

Read About Other ‘Ten’ Sodas

Mountain Dew Throwback

Yesterday we had some Pepsi Throwback, and as promised, today we’re going to kick it old school with Mountain Dew Throwback. Refresher, for those that do not know, the two ‘Throwback’ sodas are supposed to represent the original formulations of Pepsi Cola and Mountain Dew. In a time when milk was delivered to your door, when there was an evening paper, and you had more fingers than television stations, soft drinks were sweetened with REAL sugar, not high fructose corn syrup.

Today, corn syrup is much cheaper, and very few people can tell the difference. Coke ‘Classic’ really isn’t ‘classic’ at all; the original formula was based on sugar (and still is in other parts of the world). Pepsi’s story is the same. As well as Mountain Dew. I’ve tried the colas, and they’re okay, but the Dew is the one that really benefits from natural sugar.

Pepsi Throwback was smoother…. Mountain Dew Throwback is smoooooth. The stuff just glides down your throat, with none of the sticky residue that I’m used to from ‘regular’ Mountain Dew. The carbonation has been toned down a bit too, and while it takes a bit away from it’s ‘extreme’ image, it significantly adds to it’s drink-ability. You have to love the old school label as well; that’s just slick!

Mountain Dew Throwback is a must try for any soda connoisseur. Feel free to check around for more consumer reviews, you don’t have to take my word for it. But I feel that it’s a definite must try. ‘Yea!’

Official Site

–Jeremy Hobbs

Pepsi Throwback

Not only do I write consumer reviews, I read them as well. Especially soda & soft drink news and reviews; it’s just an industry I’ve enjoyed following for a long time. There are lots of little cliques of people too; small mom & pop companies vs. the Big Two, Pepsi vs. Coke, and sugar vs. high fructose corn syrup. That natural sugar debate has always intrigued me, as I’ve rarely been able to obtain access to a steady supply of beverages that have been sweetened that way. An occasional Latin beverage, but nothing made by Coke or Pepsi.

Pepsi apparently took notice of this clique of consumers, and released a couple of new beverages just for them. Mountain Dew Throwback, which I’ll review later, and what I have now, Pepsi Throwback.

Pepsi Throwback generally tastes like regular Pepsi, the only things that I noticed was that it was a bit less sweet, and slightly less carbonated. ‘Mouth feel’ is somewhat cleaner and less sticky. Naturally, all those combined make it significantly smoother.

To be perfectly honest, the only reason that I would consider picking this up over corn syrup Pepsi is that I think sugar is healthier for you. Rather, both are bad, but I’m of the belief that pure sugar is the lesser of two evils.

Pepsi is saying this is no longer a limited time product, and has been added to their cola portfolio permanently, but I’m not sure I believe them. My gut tells me that there are not enough people that truly care about the differences, and certainly not enough to keep a spinoff brand profitable. If you like it (it certainly isn’t bad) I’d stock up. Meh.

Official Site

–Jeremy Hobbs

RC Ten

Most readers can’t remember the time when RC Cola was competitive with Coke and Pepsi. Now it seems to be thought of in the same way we think of grocery store brands; a generic knock off. This is a shame, because Royal Crown Cola was, and still is, an exceptionally great tasting beverage. Closer to Pepsi than to Coke, RC has a smooth, sweet profile with a slightly fruity finish. If you’ve never tried RC, or it’s been a long time, I recommend grabbing a bottle the next time you see it. If you’re a cola fan, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Diet RC has been notoriously difficult to find. In fact, despite my best efforts to find a bottle or can, I have never laid my eyes on it in person. Rumor has it that it has been discontinued. That’s a shame, I’d have loved to add it to my collection. What we have now is RC Ten, a product riding the coat-tails of the success of Dr. Pepper Ten.

As high as I am on regular RC (as well as Dr. Pepper Ten), I’m every bit as low on RC Ten. This is just an inferior product when compared to its competition; mainly Coke Zero and Pepsi Max. It certainly falls short of its sister soda Dr. Pepper Ten. It tastes horribly of chemicals, and lacks much in the way of cola flavor. It doesn’t make me think of regular RC in any way. RC Ten is, in a word, ‘Bleh!’

Official Site

-Jeremy Hobbs

Read About Other ‘Ten’ Sodas

Dr. Pepper Ten

Diet soda has come a long way in my lifetime. Once reserved solely for diabetics and dieters, modern low-calorie beverages are fully flavored enough to be enjoyed by all. Diet sodas have become so tasty that I rarely ever reach for their full calorie versions.

Diet Dr. Pepper was always one of the better tasting zero calorie sodas, even ‘back in the day,’ but recent advancements in artificial sweetening by Coke and Pepsi had left the good doctor in the dust, so to speak. Enter Dr. Pepper Ten, a not-quite-zero-calorie-but-close-enough beverage from the Dr. Pepper/Snapple group.

In simple terms, this is probably the least ‘diet’ tasting soda that I’ve ever been lucky enough to sample. The taste is very crisp, no bitter or chemical-like after taste, and it is full flavored. Dr. Pepper Ten squeezes every tiny bit of flavor possible out of those ten calories (per serving) and I applaud the creators for their success.

As long as Dr. Pepper Ten is available in coolers, I don’t ever see myself purchasing the one-hundred plus calorie version of Dr. Pepper again. I actually prefer the mouth feel of Ten, it doesn’t have enough high fructose corn syrup in it to leave my mouth feeling all sticky. I give it a resounding ‘Yea!,’ and if you’re a Pepper fan, Dr. Pepper Ten is a must try. Can’t wait to try the other Ten’s.

Official Site

-Jeremy Hobbs

Read About Other ‘Ten’ Sodas

Miller 64

Miller developed Miller 64 in an effort to go toe-to-toe with Michelob Ultra in the low carb beer market. It is a mere 64 calories compared to Michelob Ultra’s 95. I was eager to try this one out.

Miller 64 has a slight corn malt aroma. The pour results in a vigorous head that dissipates to a thin film. The color is a pale yellow. The mouth-feel is very light bodied with an abundance of carbonation. It has a corny sweetness to it, but there are no big “beer forward” attributes. It does, however, have more flavor to it than the watery Michelob Ultra. I think I could drink quite a few of these beers in quick succession and not get tired of the flavor because it is so light.

A friend of mine commented that Miller 64 is “watered down”. I told him that I think they did an incredible job for what they were trying to accomplish in the low carb/calorie category. One suggestion that would not raise the caloric intake is to add a few more hops. The bitters would give it some more dimension instead of being a bit thin on flavor. Even though this beer lacks a bit of beer character, it has its place in the market. It would be perfect ice cold on a hot day and definitely fits the bill if you are looking to drink a refreshing light beer.

A 6-pack of Miller 64 can be found in bottles for $4.99. ‘Yea!’

Official Site

–Matt Scheere

Twisted Tea Original

Any long time reader of  The Consumer’s Corner (all 3 of you!) knows that I have a particular disdain for beer. There will be beer reviews available here, but I won’t write them. Those articles will be subbed out to friends who have significantly more experience with the bubbly brew, or I’d be completely skipping over one of the largest markets in all of consumerdom. Not going to happen.

What I love to drink are beer strength (5%ish alc/vol) beverages that actually taste good, much like Twisted Tea. Except for the most virgin of palettes, I think everyone would agree that Twisted Tea offers one of the smoothest, tastiest, and easiest to drink alcoholic beverages on the market. The flavor of  Twisted Tea ‘Original’ is simple and to the point; sweet (but not too sweet) tea, a drop of lemon, and a barely noticeable bite. Again, it’s super smooth.  Refreshing as well.

This review probably isn’t news to some of you; apparently this is a pretty successful product that has flown under my radar for quite some time. Just tossing this up for other poor, clueless souls like myself. Now that it has my full attention, I’ll be sampling as much as I can from the rest of ‘Twisted Tea’ portfolio. Available in sizes ranging from 12 ounce glass, all the way to keg-in-a-box, they all get a big ‘Yea’!

Official Site

–Jeremy Hobbs

Rockstar Super Sours Bubbleberry

I saw this in the cooler while doing some market research for The Consumer’s Corner (a.k.a. ‘going to the store’). I’m a major fan of energy drinks, by themselves or used as mixers for cocktails. The bite is just different from regular sodas, and they make me feel good. Another thing–I also have a great appreciation for is sour candy: Sweet Tarts, Nerds, sour gummy worms, etc. So grabbing a can of Rockstar Super Sours Bubbleberry was a no-brainer; this was going to be my new favorite energy drink.

In a word? No. The first sip tastes very bitter. Hear me out, bitter and sour are very different flavors. Bitter is like biting into a non-chewable vitamin. In fact, ‘vitamins’ was my response at first taste. That nastiness eased off after a sip or two once my palette adjusted, but ‘ewww’ is not what any company wants a consumer thinking when they taste their product.

Even after the adjustment period, I was not inspired to go in for seconds at all. I’ve been very impressed by the Rockstar line in the past (‘Punched’ is my go to energy drink) but Supersours Bubbleberry left me disappointed, and two dollars poorer. Going to have to give this one a ‘Bleh!’ Sorry Rockstar.

Official Site

-Jeremy Hobbs