As with pretty much all Monster drinks, your only clues as to the flavour of the drink are the colour of the can and the cryptic blurb on the side. This purple can (violet?? that’s purple…) describes the flavour as “crisp and refreshing, with a sweet and tart pixie dust flavour powered with our Monster Energy Blend”. I can confirm (to the best of my taste-bud ability) that this is grape flavour. Well at least it appears to evoke the flavour of grape soda in my mind anyway. In the UK, grape soda is available but it’s certainly not a common soft drink therefore the flavour is much more of a novelty to me than US readers of this blog may appreciate. BEcause of that, I found it quite different and interesting, even enjoyable!
Well, I suppose it’s ok – but nothing special. It’s like they’ve taken the idea from an own-brand (like Asda/Tesco) and then watered it down somewhat. It tastes to me like a weak mixed berry squash. Just like the Orange and Clementine version, it has a natural source of caffeine and contains fruit juice. It’s still my personal opinion that you shouldn’t start the day with an energy drink – your normal healthy diet should come first, therefore I can’t condone the branding choice here. But… if you had to choose a First Start drink, I’d go for the Orange over this Berries one.
I’m trying to figure out what makes First Start different to other Rock Star energy drinks. It says that it derives its caffeine from natural sources (so that’ll be the guarana then, not so unusual), and that it contains 5% fruit juice. I guess it’s that last point that makes it ‘first start’, like it’s supposed to be your morning fruit juice drink possibly? Bad idea if you’re doing that in any case! Anyway, the drink has a nice sweet orange flavour to it, quite sugary tasting yet low in calories. If we ignore the odd/confusing branding choices, it’s a good old stonking sized can of energy drink.
Pretty much like its full fat brother, Colossus is Lidl’s attempt to mimic Monster’s branding witha giant ripped-style letter X on the front of the can. I mean, it’s even using the same colours as Monster with green for the original version and blue for this low calorie version.
I purchased this from Lidl at the same time as I purchased Kong Strong, and given that the old Lidl energy drink brand was called Mixxed Up I expected them both to taste more or less the same as that and therefore each other. They were quite different though – compared to Kong Strong, this drink is more tart and sour, and quite difficult to drink in such a large quantity. I struggled through it with my teeth and tongue feeling fuzzy and coated afterwards… if you have the choice, don’t choose this one.
Of the three new Emerge Active8 flavours that have appeared recently, this is my least favourite. Its full description is “Dragon Fruit Citrus Zing”, and zing is the right word. There’s a tangy bitterness there which I’m not enjoying too much because it leaves a sickly aftertaste. It’s very fruity and strong compared to the other drinks in the range – my recommendation would be to choose one of the other two instead.
A really tasty orange flavoured drink. Lightly carbonated and not too strong at all in terms of its flavour. Again, like the Yuzu variety, it’s balanced just right and quite refreshing.
Again in the Moose Juice range, I’m really not seeing the point. They’re aimed at gym goers with their added BCAAs and low calorie content, but being in a large can they’re not easily sippable – you have to drink the whole thing in one sitting unless you go to the hassle of decanting to a bottle. They’re also expensive compare to rival energy drinks, and contain ingredients (the BCAAs I mentioned) that you’re likely to have put in your post gym protein shake anyway. It tastes good and has a nice caffeine hit, but overall it’s difficult to see where it fits in a routine.
I generally like the berry energy drinks – each one tends to taste very different depending on which berry they’ve chosen to base it around. In this instance I was quite surprised – I think it’s like a sherbet cherry flavour. It’s really sweet and tangy, and very nice especially on the scorching hot day I tried it on. It has a slightly higher caffeine content than most drinks, and also includes the body-builder’s favourite BCAAs if you like that sort of thing.