NEWS: Wrigley’s Hubba Bubba Set To Release Dr Pepper and Orange Crush Gums

Written by | September 19, 2012

Topics: Gum, Wrigley

Dr. Pepper

In the 1980s, there was a Dr Pepper-flavored gum with a liquid center produced by a Wrigley subsidiary called Amurol, which also produced A&W Root Beer, RC Cola, and 7Up bubble gum. Oh, Amurol also produced Mr. T Gold Chain chewing gum. These soda-flavored gums were also discontinued in the 1980s.

However, Dr Pepper fans will soon get to experience The Dr in chewable form when Wrigley releases Hubba Bubba Dr Pepper gum later this year. Oh, but that’s not all soda-flavored gum chewing fans. There will also be an Orange Crush-flavored Hubba Bubba as well.

Each pack will contain five pieces, but we’re not sure if it will have a gushing liquid center like the original Dr Pepper gum.

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REVIEW: Shaun White’s Mintacular Stride Gum

Written by | August 9, 2012

Topics: 6 Rating, Gum, Stride

Stride Shaun White Mintacular

Public Service Announcement: a fever is creeping among us.

Its symptoms include staying up far to late with a box of Peanut Butter Crunch, biting at the bit to watch the landing of a back tuck into a needle kick with a full turn, and a spontaneous desire to trade one’s career path for one in a highly competitive world of a sport one has never tried (badminton, bobsledding, competitive handball…the list goes on). Sometimes, these idealistic visions result in actually pursuing said sport for a concentrated period of time. Reports say that attempts by those infected with the fever have resulted in strangers breaking into cartwheels on the sidewalk and poorly executed forehands on multiple tennis courts around the globe.

Yes, Olympic fever is among us and it races through the pulse of six continents (poor Antarctica…) every two-and-a-half years, mercilessly infecting the homes of millions and accounting for 73 percent of all trampoline-related accidents.

If you find yourself experiencing symptoms of Olympic fever, please know there is a cure. It involves a ratio of 87 percent hope, 12 percent time, and 1 percent mint.

Thus, it is with great relief that I find Stride bringing a new minty flavor (sponsored by an Olympian, no less) in our nation’s time of great need.

Stride Shaun White Mintacular Closeup

Mint can do spectacular things. I used to bring a pack of mints in to every standardized test to chew on during breaks between the math and literature sections. It unquestionably provided me with the endurance to fill in all those tiny bubbles and, thus, I credit mint for allowing me to pursue a solid 1/3 of my academic career. Supposedly, there are over 6,700 different species of mint, and Stride is hot on the trail in mint innovation, hoping to bring out the latest and greatest in its new Shaun-White-sponsored “Mintacular” flavor they’re pulling out in a few months.

As evidence by my stash of Costco-sized packs of Stride Spearmint 2.0, I believe that Stride can make a solid piece of gum, but what of this latest sorbitol-and-glycerin-infused innovation?

Stride Shaun White Mintacular Closerup

It’s a pleasant little white rectangle the color of the snow just before you race down the double black diamond at 84 miles per hour.

Now, to the chew test: prefaced with the name, “Mintacular,” I braced myself for a plunge of the sinuses, one of those overwhelming 10-second shocks of peppermint-infused pain that some gums hurtle upon the unsuspecting consumers only to rip the flavor away after 3 chews. I am grateful to announce that a) Mintacular lasts longer than three chews and b) doesn’t pull a merciless chimney sweep on the sinuses. (Thank you, Stride, for sparing my nostrils.)

Quite to my surprise, Mintacular’s mint is quite subtle, holding a similar taste to those little soft dinner mints that grandma would leave out on the counter after dinner. There’s even a bit of a bright (verging on fruity…is that a hint of watermelon?) spark that blends with the mint. If “Level of Mintiness” were on the same scale they use to measure snowboarding slopes, I would say this is an intermediate blue square (or red if one is using the European slope scales). The fruitiness can somewhat mask the mint qualities, which is a bit of a bummer for the mint-lover in my heart.

However, I’m thinking if I were skiing down a mountain, defying physics in sub-zero temperatures, perhaps this more subtle mint might be a good choice as I wouldn’t need a “cold burst of minty freshness” if I’m already clomping around in -2 degrees Fahrenheit weather. For my regular gum-chewing habits, it’s a bit too gentle on mint flavor, but I appreciate it for its unobtrusive nature. It’s quite akin to the experience of looking out on untouched snow as it falls from the sky at 6:00 a.m.

And it lasts a long time without tasting like a car tire. In the spirit of the gum’s Olympic sponsor, I chewed as I watched my Olympic coverage. The taste of this little bugger lasted through a full two gymnastic routines, a commercial break, at least two legs of the running trials, and a personal celebration dance. And fear not, avid chewer, for even after the flavor dwindles away like a cowboy into the sunset, you may chew on as this little noble piece of gum stays soft for a fair amount of time.

I have a fairly high standard of mint and Mintacular proved itself to be a pleasant contender, and, while it may not replace the ol’ reliable Spearmint, if Mintacular sticks around, I’m sure I’ll be chewing it as I witness Shaun White flip something amazing in the halfpipe.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 piece – less than 5 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 1 gram of carbohydrates, 1 gram of sugar alcohol, and less than 0 grams of protein.)

Item: Shaun White’s Mintacular Stride Gum
Purchased Price: $1.00
Size: 1 pack/14 sticks
Purchased at: A new products show
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Long chewing time. Doesn’t get rubbery. Sugar-free. Grandma’s bowl of after-dinner mints. Watching the Olympic Games. Looking out on untouched snow. Imagining yourself as an Olympic snowboarder with the wind whooshing in your face as you dart-and-weave through pines while trying not to crash into Sasquatch.
Cons: Melon flavor muddles the mint a bit too much. Antarctica has never competed in the Olympic Games. Trying to snowboard in -2 degrees Fahrenheit weather. Standardized tests.

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REVIEW: Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float Gum

Written by | June 5, 2012

Topics: 5 Rating, Gum, Wrigley

Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float

Since the dawn of stuff, people have been looking for a way to get their dessert fix on for a mere five calories. While early attempts by our ancestors to eat grass and cut pieces of cake just really, really small yielded lackluster results, the efforts of Wrigley and their Extra Dessert Delights gum have recently revolutionized the way we experience dessert.

No longer forced to choose between extreme portion control or insane feats of metabolic fitness to combat the effects of grandma’s apple pie or a container of mint chocolate chip ice cream, we can now chow down on our favorite sweets for the caloric equivalent of an ounce of chopped radishes.

This summer, Wrigley expanded their temping Extra Dessert Delights line of sugar-free gums with a root beer float-flavored variety.

I was an early convert to Extra’s Dessert Delights and have now tried all the flavors, including the now-defunct Rainbow Sherbet flavor (still mourning that one, for what it’s worth). So there was no question I’d be buying the new Root Beer Float gum, eschewing the ever-present threat of becoming a human whoopee cushion, all thanks to those lovely sugar alcohols, which, if I’m not being clear enough, will give you more gas than Saudi Arabia.

I like my Root Beer crisp, rough around the edges, and on the high side of the carbonation spectrum (think Barq’s) and won’t waste time on that smooth A&W crap that might as well be cream soda. No, I’m a Barq’s man, dammit, and when it comes to proper root beer float construction, I won’t settle for no boxed Walmart Frozen Dessert nonsense to pair with my soda. Nope, its good old fashioned, full fat vanilla bean hard ice cream for me, and anything less is a travesty that should be banished from these here United States.

The root beer flavor of Extra’s gum doesn’t have that hard and slightly bitter bite, and it sure doesn’t have the kind of carbonation that will help me win a burping contest with my nine-year-old cousins. It does, however, have a proper balance of vanilla and spice, with a prerequisite sweetness to please anyone not horribly averse to the long litany of artificial sweeteners used in its construction.

Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float Closeup

Sadly, Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float is another gum that suffers from the time-space continuum of the gum paradox, which, if you’re unfamiliar, confirms the very fact that the better tasting the gum, the less time the flavor lasts. I got a good minute of strong root beer float flavor from my sticks, but after that, it’s the law of diminishing returns. Unlike a real root beer float, you can’t even burp up the taste hours later.

And this, my friends, leads to the greatest travesty of all. Remember those hard-learned lessons regarding sugar alcohol consumption? In my efforts to keep a constant and bottomless root beer float going (and at a mere 10 sticks, only 50 calories) the laws of nature eventually caught up to me. I need not say more.

Extra’s new Dessert Delight’s Root Beer Float Gum tastes like a root beer float, but it doesn’t impress me. For it to impress me, Extra would have to pull a page from Willy Wonka and either A) Make the gum change from apple pie to strawberry shortcake to key lime pie to root beer float without making me turn into a gigantic blueberry or B) Come up with a way to make the flavor last more than a minute.

Given how far we’ve come as a culture in gum flavor development, it amazes me this hasn’t happened yet. Finally, let’s be real, Extra. When it comes to your sugar alcohol warning, tell it like it is. Attempting to recreate a never-ending root beer float may not leave you burping, but it will leave you feeling like the human equivalent to a whoopee cushion in the hands of an overzealous 10-year-old.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 stick – 5 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of sodium, 2 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, 2 grams of sugar alcohol, and 0 grams of protein.)

Other Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float Gum reviews:
Mmm…Deliciousness
The Mind of a Big Cat

Item: Extra Dessert Delights Root Beer Float Gum
Price: $2.00
Size: 3 pack/15 sticks
Purchased at: Giant
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Tastes like a root beer float. Smells like a root beer float. Good balance of vanilla and sassafras flavor. Smooth. Only 5 calories a stick. An All-American summer.
Cons: Gum paradox strikes again. Excessive consumption of sugar alcohols. No bite. No smooth, creamy richness component. Mug not included. Sugar alcohols.

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NEWS: Mentos UP2U Gum GETS3NU Flavors

Written by | March 19, 2012

Topics: Gum, Mentos

Mentos UP2U Gum (Sweet Mint/Bubble Fresh and Daylight Mint/Mintnight Mint) Pieces

Last year, Mentos introduced their UP2U line that came in four flavors, which we reviewed (here and here).

Wait. Actually, that’s incorrect.

There were four different packs and each one had two flavors, so there were really eight flavors. Well, there are now 14 flavors because Mentos has recently release three new UP2U varieties:

Chillax Mint and Energy Strike

Superfruit Smasher and Tropical Mixer

Striped Red Strawberry and Starmint

The Gum Connoisseur’s Tumblr has reviews for Chillax Mint and Energy Strike and Superfruit Smasher and Tropical Mixer.

Here are some quick notes about the new varieties: The Energy Strike flavor does contain caffeine; Superfruit Smasher includes pomegranate, yuzu, cranberry and other fruity flavors; and Striped Red Strawberry and Starmint comes in patriotic packaging that makes me want to stand up, put my hand on my heart, and recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

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WEEK IN REVIEWS – 2/11/2012

Written by | February 11, 2012

Topics: Cookies, Frozen Food, Tea, Trader Joe's, Trident

Trader Joe's

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

A Trader Jose’s product? I didn’t know Trader Joe’s changed names for different ethnic foods. So are Swedish products under the Trader Johan’s name and Japanese products under Trader Junsuke’s? (via What’s Good At Trader Joe’s)

Wait…Iron Man 2 was released in 2010. How old are these things? (via Clearance Cuisine)

It looks like a typhoon blew away the N in this product’s name. (via Drinkable Review)

The name of these biscuits sound like they’re promoting the upcoming G.I. Joe sequel, but they also sound like they’re promoting the Star Wars 3D release. (via Foodstuff Finds)

Will this gum help those who can’t walk and chew gum at the same time? (via Gum Connoisseur)

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