Sunday, April 3, 2016

PurAqua Orange Mango Sparkling Frost Sparkling Water Beverage (Aldi)


Bright orange when full, a letdown when consumed.
My wife had given these a go a little while ago, and dismissed them as being “too sweet”, which is actually what drew me to them.  I was also intrigued by the “sparkling” aspect of these--I don’t drink much soda these days, but am always open to the occasional soda substitute, and thought maybe this would satisfy me.  Even better: these things retail for a scant $.69, which honestly puts them in “you have nothing to lose” territory (though, to be fair, technically all of their products fall into that category, thanks to Aldi’s money-back guarantee), so I grabbed two out of the three flavors--I had to omit the “pink grapefruit” because I’m on cholesterol medicine that reacts to said fruit, and while I’ve broken that rule for a previous review, I don’t like to do it at all.

First we’re going to be taking a look at the Orange Mango, whose bright orange glow makes it look delicious and refreshing.  I must admit, once again, that I didn’t notice this was a zero calorie beverage until literally the moment I was cracking it open--I really need to be a little more observant of packaging before I buy certain products, because this has been happening way too often lately.  In its defense, however, I probably still would have bought it even if I had noticed that it was “diet”, if for no other reason than its price point.

It smells strongly of orange, with a little bit of mango accent, which really had me excited and expecting something delicious…something that the drink itself can’t deliver.  The taste seems like the water and the flavoring weren’t mixed together properly; upon hitting the taste buds right after you take a swig, there’s a strong sweetness hinted at, but swallowing only gives the taste of lightly-flavored water with intensely-fake sweetener.  The aftertaste (and, honestly, the taste itself) only got worse and worse for me the more I tried to give it chances; by the midway point, I didn’t even want to drink anymore because the aftertaste was so chemical and overwhelming.

I don’t like to say “never”, but I don’t see myself getting this kind ever again.  Even around this price point ($.69), Aldi has some other options that I actually like a lot better, like their Fit & Active flavored waters.  No matter how little I’m paying, or how few calories I’m getting, I at least expect it to have a taste I can tolerate, and these don’t come even close to that basic courtesy.

Overall: 2.5/10. It smells great, looks inviting, and the initial taste on the tongue is good, but assuming you’re actually planning on swallowing it, that’s when it all goes downhill.  The taste when swallowing shifts drastically, giving a very weak orange flavor in the back of the throat that slowly dissipates, giving way to a finish that’s little more than just plain sparkling water.  That might be okay enough to appeal to some, and might have been something I could have tolerated, but then there’s an intense, chemical aftertaste that lingers in the throat for a very long time, and tends to get stronger and stronger the longer you drink it…by the midway point of the bottle, even the thought of taking a drink was no longer enjoyable.  Points must be given for value, though--$.69 isn’t a bad price at all, so if you end up liking this, it won’t break the bank. I don’t plan on ever trying them again, short of a total formula overhaul.

7 comments:

  1. Soda substitute, WTF? Carbonated water? Sorry, I cannot wrap my head around either definition. I'll stick with regular water, maybe mixed with some Crystal Light or even a drop or three of Lemon juice if I want some flavor.

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    1. Haha, I've been cutting back on soda, but sometimes want something with some extra fizz. All that sugar for me is such a turn-off. So I like the idea of having something with carbonation that isn't soda.

      I guess others don't share that mindset, lol.

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    2. Well Mike,

      If you are weight training and into fitness, you are trying to drink close to a gallon or more of water every day.... just drinknig filtered or bottle water at that levels gets a bit much.... adding carbonated water to the equasion makes it much, much, much easier to consume that much water.....

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  2. I need to find out what the caffeine content is. One of the ingredients is green tea?

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    1. You know, you're lucky that I frequently have nothing better to do and actually enjoy investigating things, because in the time it takes people to ask me questions, they probably could have found the answers themselves on Google. But I won't hold it against you, Anonymous User, as this search actually took me a little while.

      Actually, one of the ingredients is green tea EXTRACT. Now, Aldi rarely offers info on any of their products, so I had to take a leap of faith and assume that the same makers of the national brand (Sparkling Ice) make Aldi's...it's believable given that the bottles look very similar and they also offer both flavors in question.

      A quick view of their FAQ reveals that your question seems to be on the minds of many...and also reveals that their green tea extract is actually caffeine free. So there is no caffeine in these drinks. For proof, it's the second question down in their FAQ.

      http://www.sparklingice.com/faq/

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  3. the way to go if you are looking to get away from soda but stil want a carbonated drink is Belle Vie by PurAqua. Its 100% filtered carbonated water with REAL lemon Juice added. Tasted just like what you'd expect when you add lemon with a glass of water except carbonated. It also comes in Grapefruit, lime and just carbonated water.

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    1. I really wish I could drink those, but I absolutely have to have some kind of sweetness in my beverage, and those have none. My wife, who has a drier palate, absolutely LOVES drinks like that, though. Agree it would be a great soda substitute, though!

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