Monday, May 27, 2013

Review for Monster Energy--Ultra Blue


140 mg


When I first reviewed this, it was already found everywhere except, apparently, the 100-freaking mile radius around Rexburg, Idaho—which is where I live.  It was really irritating to have to have a family member bring a can of the new Monster Energy drink I’ve been dying to review from outside the freaking site, but now, fortunately, it is everywhere, including the local Wal-Mart (the standard for a 10/10 in this category).


Sorry that the pic of the can isn’t that great; I couldn’t find the camera but needed to put something up.  In any event, this can (while appealing) lacks the class of Zero Ultra.  I do like the color and the textured can, and the paisley/frost pattern actually stars off as a nice touch.  My issue is with the miniscule Monster M’s branching off from the terminal portions of the pattern—it’s not subtle enough to be clever and just winds up being incredibly cheesy.  Other than that…kudos.


You know, this is a pretty darn good energy drink.  It wasn’t my favorite at first—but the more I have it, the more I like it.  In any event, this has the same mellow, not-so-sweet approach as Zero Ultra (go figure), but with a grapefruit flavor profile that emboldens the overall experience and benefits surprisingly from the toning-down, considering the fact that it’s the fruit’s intensity that draws most people to it.  I certainly recommend giving it a try if curious; I’d say there’s a good chance that this might be another hit like unto Zero Ultra.


One thing I take issue with when it comes to this and Zero Ultra (and Ultra Red…yeah, I’m revising this review to be a little more thorough) is the fact that a single can does not provide the intensity of most of my favorite Monster beverages—it’s more along the lines of average than slightly above.  Drink one and you’ll be awake—not especially wired, just awake.  It’s passable, but for a real boost I’d drink two.


Got at least three hours out of a single can, with no crash.


My verdict: this is certainly a tasty beverage, and for that alone is worth trying.  The kick will absolutely do the job but is definitely towards the south border of what I consider to be a comfortable energy boost in terms of intensity, but once again, just drink two freaking cans if you’re worried about that.

KEYWORDS: Monster Ultra Blue energy drink review, zero carbs, zero calories, zero sugar, diet

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Review for Victory Rebound--Orange


Est. 160 mg


Victory is making plenty of headway in the availability department, but as of yet has not attained the ubiquity of Monster, Rockstar, Red Bull, etc.  Just keep your eyes peeled.


I think I can only say “bland and unremarkable” in so many ways, and I think I used just about all of them all up reviewing the other Victory cans—so let’s just leave it at that for now and get to the really important stuff.


It’s nice to be able to have something good to write about for a Victory energy drink in this regard.  While certainly nothing new or innovative, this “hydration” beverage manages to deliver the caffeinated equivalent of low-calorie, orange-flavored Gatorade—which is my favorite flavor of the beverage.  Add a little glucose and a few more electrolytes and you wind up with a drink that actually has a decent stab at doing the hydrating job.


Like all Victory beverages, this delivers a fairly respectable mid-range kick, with a blend of smoothness and intensity that I would have an easy time coming back to this beverage for.  You might not be buzzing about your business, but you’ll be alert and functional enough to get it taken care of.


Four smooth hours, no crash.


I’ve always liked the way Victory beverages perform, and this one is no exception—and unlike the others, it tastes good enough that buying it doesn’t require you to bite the bullet.  If you’re tired, thirsty and cheap, this one might be the way to go.

KEYWORDS: Victory Rebound Orange energy drink review, low carb, low calorie, low sugar, diet, hydration

Review for Rockstar Energy Water--Tropical Citrus


200 mg


Not a frequent sight at larger chains, but just hit up the nearest gas station and you’re almost guaranteed to find it.


Black and yellow might not be my favorite color combination, but ni modo—aesthetically the motif is bold and effective; functionally it’s as practical as one could ask for, with the caffeine content prominently displayed and the wide-mouthed bottle making for easy drinking.  Nothing here that I haven’t commented on with the other two flavors.


The tropical citrus flavor doesn’t give me a whole lot to write about here—the taste is about what you would expect, just an amalgamation of miscellaneous tropical fruits.  You get your pineapple, you get your passion fruit, you get your mango—nothing disagreeable, but at the same time fairly ordinary.


As much as it was a bummer to get so ordinary a flavor out of the beverage, it was quickly forgotten as I began to feel the effects of this beverage.  The kick rocks—I can’t think of a more appropriate way to put it.  It is an appropriately intense experience, given the 200 mg of caffeine, but what makes it stand out is that it is so smooth and jitter-free that I’ve been using it as a standard against which I’ve measured subsequent beverages.  In the end, it’s the quality of the buzz that wins me over, rather than the intensity alone.


Smoothest four-hour buzz of my life, culminating sans crash.


While the flavor could use some work, the kick is such that you’d be hard-pressed to go wrong by picking one of these up.  Skeptical as I am about high-caffeine hydration beverages, it is still refreshing and extremely invigorating, and going this route (plus a healthy quantity of Gatorade, just to be sure) following intense physical activity is something I can easily recommend.


KEYWORDS: Rockstar Energy Water Tropical Citrus review, zero carb, zero sugar, diet, hydration, electrolytes

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Review for Rockstar Punched--Blue Raspberry


240 mg


Where the frick did this one come from?  I was just wandering through my local grocery store last night, picking up a few groceries and generally minding my own business, when suddenly I come across this brand-new Rockstar.  I hadn’t seen any leaked photos, no reviews on other review sites, nada.  Not like Rockstar to sneak in under my radar like that.


I really do like the new format Rockstar’s been putting (with no particular trends) on their new drinks, with the outlined star and repeating Rockstar logo running in an almost 3-D fashion into the background.  The color choice here—black with faded red and blue—is a bit of an unusual choice in my mind; it looks a lot like something that you’d see at the Tech Noir dance club in The Terminator.  Still, on the whole I approve.


I should have known there was trouble when I first read the back of the can—280 calories per 16 oz. can.  Pretty bad even for a Rockstar.  Anyway, popping the top produced a rush of raspberry aroma—obviously fake, but still pleasant enough.  The first sips seemed promising—again, fake but agreeable.  By the time I was ¾ through the can, the wicked quantity of sugar I was putting into my system was proving itself far more than I could tolerate without feeling sick.  Slarging down the rest, I made my way home, took as much psyllium powder as I safely could (cellulose binds to the fructose half of sucrose and carries it out of your system), and began readying myself for the gym—to and from which I ran, and at which I burnt 560 calories on Jacob’s Ladder, which made me feel loads better.


What a freaking rush.  This kick is probably the strongest I’ve had in months, which shouldn’t come as a surprise given the 240 mg of caffeine and the 60-some odd grams of sugar I just got done bashing.  For a shaky, jittery blast, you really can’t get better than this—I’m almost thinking I might try it in a month or so (after a 30-day abstinence from simple sugars) just to experience that kick again.


That rush lasted me about five and a half hours, during which I managed to burn off all the sugar that surely would have ended in a disastrous crash.  Having intensely exercised during the fact, my energy levels simply dropped dramatically over the course of the last five to ten minutes or so.


What can I say?  As far as flavor is concerned it’s just as uninspired and pointless as heir recently released Super Sours and Punched—Guava, and nutritionally it is an absolute disaster.  The only thing that is keeping me from writing it off altogether is that glorious, caffeine and sugar-fueled kick, which is so much guilty fun that I can hardly stop thinking about it.  It really is a beverage for those with active lifestyles in function and out of necessity—unrelentingly intense to keep you going in whatever you elect to take on, but also bringing enough empty calories to the table that you might want to think twice (or more) if it’s not guaranteed that you’ll be able to burn it off and then some while under its influence.


KEYWORDS: Rockstar Punched Blue Raspberry review
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