NEWS: VitaminWater Jumps on Coconut Water Bandwagon With Their New Coco-Refresh Flavor

Coconut face

Last year, SoBe introduced a Lifewater line with coconut water because coconut water was as hot as acai was the year before. And now VitaminWater has finally stuffed some coconut water into a new flavor called Coco-Refresh.

VitaminWater Coco-Refresh contains 10 percent real coconut water from concentrate, which is also the case with the SoBe beverages. Like all VitaminWater varieties, the coconut and pineapple-flavored Coco-Refresh has a purpose. While some help you focus and others help your skin, the latest has the amazing ability to rehydrate you.

Ooooh! Rehydration! I wish all the other VitaminWater varieties had that ability. Oh wait, they all have water, so they do.

Drink What has a review.

A 20-ounce bottle has 120 calories, 0 grams of fat, 30 milligrams of sodium, 880 milligrams of potassium, 32 grams of carbohydrates, 31 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein, 100% vitamin B6, 100% vitamin B12, 100% panothenic acid (vitamin B5), and, of course, it’s got electrolytes.

A quick comparison between Sobe Lifewater Coconut Water and VitaminWater Coco-Refresh shows Coco-Refresh has more calories and sugar than Sobe Lifewater Coconut Water, but it also has less sodium, more potassium, and all those B vitamins.

Image via flickr user tree-species / CC BY 2.0

REVIEW: Michelob Ultra Light Cider

Michelob Ultra Light Cider

There’s something paradoxical about summer, and I think I’ve pinpointed it. See, it’s the time of the year when you’re showing the most skin, and thus need to be in your best shape; yet it’s also the season when you’re most tempted to eat poorly.

Oh, I’ll grant you winter has Christmas cookies and latkes (where my interfaith readers at?), and autumn doubles up with Halloween candy and Thanksgiving dinner. But those are isolated foods tied to specific holidays. Summer is an entire three months of cooking out burgers and hot dogs, roasting marshmallows over a campfire or bonfire, and drinking beer.

And oh, there are some great summer beers. I’m not much of a hefeweizen fan myself, but there’s summer ales and pilsners and IPAs to slake your thirst and remind you of how great a dancer you really are. But the fact is, alcohol is fattening. There’s no such thing as “beer abs.”

So if you’re going to indulge your vices while wearing something that makes other people want to indulge theirs, you need a low-calorie option. And Michelob has come up with a new diet-friendly solution they hope you’ll consider, called “Drink ’till your friends take your keys, then walk home.” Just kidding, it’s Michelob Ultra Light Cider, with a third fewer calories than traditional ciders.

I’ve had this drink’s spiritual precursor, “regular” Michelob Ultra, numerous times in the past and enjoyed it well enough by light beer standards. The big problem with light drinks is my child-sized bladder, since their relatively low alcohol content means I spend half of every night in the men’s room without getting even a minor buzz.

A glance at the front of the Light Cider bottle reveals that it’s 4.0% Alcohol By Volume, relatively but not ridiculously low. (For comparison, MGD 64 is 2.8% ABV, or what we like to call “German water.”) Still, this cider is more of an “unwind with your friends after a hard day at the office” drink, not one to get trashed on and send embarrassing texts to your high school crush. (She’s happy with Brad. Move on.)

Michelob Ultra Light Cider Bottle

Admittedly I don’t know much about cider, but as the father of two preschoolers, I have a passing acquaintance with apple juice. And when the first sip hit my tongue, my immediate thought was, “This is apple juice.” That impression didn’t much change as I continued to drink. It fizzes more than apple juice, but other than that, if you’re able to detect the alcohol in this cider, you have better taste buds than I. And not that I would ever try, but I’m 99 percent sure I could give this to my 3-year-old at breakfast and she’d drink it without noticing the difference, at least until Curious George started talking back to her.

You may be thinking, “That’s cool, I like apple juice.” And if so, you probably will dig this drink. But Ned Flanders once taught me if it’s tangy and brown, you’re in cider town, and this product is not brown and only slightly tangy. But it IS sweet and yellow, which typically means you’ve got juice there, fella. The ingredient list is no help, since apparently hard cider is just apple juice concentrate with dextrose and water added. Please do me the favor of mentally putting finger quotes around that “hard” part.

In all seriousness, it’s a decent beverage, though it is kind of disconcerting to be drinking something you know is alcoholic but tastes like kindergarten. Be sure to drink quickly, as this cider tastes worse when it gets warm.

On the other hand, you can probably add a point to the rating if you drink it over ice. It’s also gluten-free, so there’s that. I could see this being a good drink for summer cookouts where you need to keep your wits about you for that beach volleyball game after lunch, or when you want a fruity drink but there’s no little umbrellas around. But I also don’t think light beer has any reason to worry about being replaced.

(At the strong prompting of my wife, I’d like to reiterate that, no, I did not give my child this alcoholic drink. Obviously. Child vomit is just WAY too hard to get out of carpet.)

(Editor’s Note/Disclosure: Drew received free Michelob Ultra Light Cider samples from the nice folks over at Michelob. We did not receive any monetary compensation for this review, but if we did, we would totally disclose that too. Also, please drink responsibly.)

(Nutrition Facts – one 12 oz bottle – 120 calories, 0 grams of total fat, 15 milligrams of sodium, 10 grams of total carbohydrates, 6 grams of sugars, less than 1 gram of protein)

Item: Michelob Ultra Light Cider
Price: FREE
Size: 6 pack (12 oz bottles)
Purchased at: Received from nice folks at Michelob
Rating: 7 out of 10
Pros: Doesn’t taste artificially sweetened (because it isn’t). ABV fairly equivalent to most light beers. Low calories and carbohydrates. Good news if you like apple juice. Slightly less girly than an appletini. Christmas cookies and latkes.
Cons: Can’t much taste the alcohol. Feels a little weird drinking cider in summer. Hard to drink a full bottle in one sitting — a little goes a long way. Really tastes and looks more like juice than cider. Tastes definitely takes a nosedive when you let it warm up.

WEEK IN REVIEWS – 6/2/2012

Candwich Innards

Here are a few product reviews posted this week from other blogs we follow.

Do you love peanut butter and jelly flavored snacks as much as the British love prawn cocktail flavored snacks? Well then, boom! And, boom! (via Foodstuff Finds, Junk Food Guy, and Candyblog)

This wholesome British cereal looks like someone shoved whatever was on a forest floor into a bag. But because it looks the way it does, it would do a great job decorating a fall diorama. (via Milk and Spoon)

Click either photo in this review. When you see the full sized version, take your computer monitor and spin it like you’re using it as a steering wheel. Keep spinning until you get sleepy or begin to cluck like a chicken. (via Flavor Scientist)

Tired of giving your favorite apocalypse believer MREs for his or her birthday? Well, I’m pretty sure he or she would be extremely happy to have these in the underground bunker. (via Food Junk)


Here are some new products found on store shelves by us and your fellow readers. We may or may not review them, but we’d like to let you know what new items are popping up. We’ll also occasionally throw in an unusual product.


Kozy Shack has lactose-free dairy pudding that’s also gluten free. That’s a lot of free, but Kozy Shack shouldn’t have stopped there. They should’ve also made it calorie-free, sugar-free, and fat-free. Sure, it probably would’ve tasted horrible, and it would’ve lost them money, but we won’t know for sure unless they tried. The lactose- and gluten-free pudding comes in three flavors: rice, tapioca, and chocolate.

Random Food 007

I believe every time Kashi releases a new product, a nutritionist gets his or her degree. So congratulations to all you new nutritionists who got their degrees thanks to Kashi’s new soft-baked squares. Some of you might be thinking the chocolate one looks like a brownie, but the seven whole grains, sweet potato, and black beans it contains doesn’t make it sound like a brownie. The almond version is also made with Kashi’s seven whole grains, sweet potatoes, and beans. Both are sweetened with agave and each soft-baked square provides 4 grams of fiber and 300 milligrams of ALA omega-3. Thanks for the photo, Adam.



New dips from Frito-Lay. After doing some Googling, I discovered the Tostitos Zesty Taco dip has been out for several weeks. I don’t really pay attention to cheesy dips because any orange gloop gives me nightmares. Ruffles Ultimate Smokehouse Bacon dip hasn’t been out as long as the Tostitos dip and I have a jar of it sitting in my fridge. There really are real bits of bacon in the dips, along with the following ingredients: smoky bacon type flavor and butter type flavor. Thank you for the pics, Travis.


A few weeks ago in New England, Nabisco started replacing their square Premium crackers with round ones. There were some issues with the new round crackers. My issue with these round Premium crackers is that they now look like Ritz crackers. The line between upper class and lower class crackers is now blurred. Thanks for the photo, Nicole.

If you’re out shopping and see a new product on the shelf (or really unusual), snap a picture of it, email it to us at [email protected] with “Spotted” in the subject line, and you might see it in our next Spotted on Shelves post.

NEWS: Cool Down Your Innards With Wendy’s Strawberry Shortcake Frosty Parfait


It’s going to get really hot soon and you’re going to need something to cool down. Sure, to keep cool you could walk around in wet clothing or have robots use giant feathers to fan you, but that will only keep you cool on the outside.

What about the inside?

You could drink a glass of ice water, have nanobots use microscopic feathers to fan your innards, or your could eat Wendy’s new Strawberry Shortcake Frosty Parfait. The latest addition to the Frosty Parfait line is available for a limited time and consists of strawberry puree, vanilla Frosty, and shortbread cookie chunks topped with whipped cream and fresh strawberry pieces. On Second Scoop reviewed it.

A Wendy’s Strawberry Shortcake Frosty Parfait has 370 calories, 110 calories from fat, 12 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 35 milligrams of cholesterol, 135 milligrams of sodium, 58 grams of carbohydrates, 46 grams of sugar, 1 gram of fiber, 7 grams of protein, 10% vitamin A, 15% vitamin C, and 25% calcium.

Some of you might be thinking, “Hey, that’s not very healthy for something with fruit!” And you would be correct. If you’d like a slightly healthier Wendy’s Frosty Parfait with fruit, might I suggest the caramel apple one, which has 340 calories, 8 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, and 20% vitamin C.

Or, if you want a slightly healthier Wendy’s Frosty Parfait without fruit, go and enjoy the Oreo Frosty Parfait, which has 330 calories, 9 grams of fat, and 4.5 grams of saturated fat.

Image via flickr user aloshbennett / CC BY 2.0