Saturday, July 11, 2015

Nature's Nectar Mango Medley Smoothie (Aldi)

Can't say that either of us are impressed with this...at all.
To summarize the long backstory told in a previous review: One of my favorite-ever drinks is Bolthouse Farms’ Green Goodness; my wife’s is Naked’s Mango smoothie beverage.  Lo and behold, Aldi is offering Nature’s Nectar (their brand of juice beverages) Super Green and Mango Medley smoothies as a Special Buy in their stores.  As far as I can tell, both of them are knocking off Bolthouse Farms’ versions of these beverages, so how well do they stack up?

The reason my wife enjoys Naked’s mango smoothie so much is because of the texture; whereas just about all of these drinks call themselves “smoothies”, many of them are lighter than a smoothie.  In other words, while thicker than the average juice, they’re still closer to the consistency of a liquid than they are an actual smoothie.  The mango version, however, is a lot thicker than most, which really does give it a thickness that could safely be considered “smoothie”.  However, this being a knockoff (I’m fairly certain) of Bolthouse Farms’ Mango drink, and not Naked’s, we weren’t really sure what to expect.

Thankfully, the texture here is also pretty thick, though my wife didn’t feel like it was up to par with her favorite one.  For me, the thickness isn’t so much of a big deal, though I will say it’s definitely thicker than the Super Green version, which is more like juice than anything else.  The smell is inviting, though I feel like it smells more like the rind of a mango than the fruit itself; a rather nitpicky “complaint”, but one I feel is worth noting, for whatever reason.

The taste is somewhat a mixed bag:  It starts off rather sweet, fruit flavors at the forefront, before it gradually gives way to a somewhat bizarre, certainly unsweet finish; the first thing I thought of was that it tastes like a mango rind, too, while my wife described it as “peppery”.  I do find it a little bizarre that, out of Nature’s Nectar two offerings, this is the one that isn’t super-sweet, considering it’s comprised almost entirely of concentrated juice and purees, save for some vitamins and beta carotene for color (whereas their Super Green somehow manages to be even sweeter while containing other ingredients like spinach and garlic; go figure).  I’m not real partial to mangos, having just started liking them a few months back, but I wasn’t a real huge fan of this.  If it’s offered full-time at Aldi stores, I would probably pick it up occasionally, just as a change of pace, or maybe as a mixer to other juices (or alcohol) but certainly not very often at all.  My wife was also sorely disappointed; I don’t think she’ll ever pick it up again.  In fact, I very well may have to finish off this bottle myself.

Overall: 5/10. Their Super Green was largely spot-on, and put me in a bit of a quandary whether to continue buying Bolthouse’s version, or Aldi’s; this one, on the other hand, isn’t even close.  While I’m not the mango aficionado in this house (a title that would easily go to my wife), neither of us were really huge fans of the taste.  It starts off sweet, but then gives way to a decidedly non-sweet finish, one that I would describe as “mango rind”, while my wife said that it's “peppery”.  I don’t often buy mango juices; for me, this certainly won’t change that.  My wife, on the other hand, counts Naked’s Mango smoothie as one of her favorite drinks in the world, and will just continue purchasing that one, at $1.50 more per bottle.  Darn you, Aldi!

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