REVIEW: Dr Pepper Ten

Dr Pepper Ten

The fall season is beginning to make itself known here in Orlando. We have traded out 95 degree days (with humidity so thick you can cut slices of it and serve with whipped topping) for temperatures in the mid-eighties. The trees are turning from green to the same green. The air smelling of sweat mixed with citrus perfumes are bowing out for scents of sweat and sandalwood ones. Yep, Fall is here.

Who am I kidding? We would never know Fall has arrived if not for those disgusting cinnamon brooms the supermarkets trudge out that assault our noses. The aroma drives me crazy. Why the hell would anyone want their house to smell like smoker’s sneeze? It’s that unique blend of metal and curdled milk? Sorry dad, when you sneezed, it was the olfactory equivalent of Hiroshima.

So here I was in my local supermarket searching for some pizza rolls and the sickening wafts pillaged my nostrils. I didn’t care if I stretched the neck of my fitted t-shirt but I stuck my nose under the collar. Aware that I looked like I was trying to avoid the avian bird flu while roaming the aisles, I did not care. But then I found it, or maybe it found me (cue the Zamfir).

Dr Pepper Ten! All my friends know I am a sucker for two things: soft drinks with new flavors (I’m still hunting for that elusive mint-tinged Sprite Ice) and women who wear eyeglasses (drool). I am aware of the rules because for every Pepsi Lime there is a Pepsi Holiday Spice. I remember drinking the Holiday Spice and thought there was a demand for paint varnish flavored soft drinks. SCORE!!! I held a cold frosty bottle of the new Dr Pepper Ten.

Just to let you know Dr Pepper Ten also comes in the two-liter bottle (which normally go flat incredibly fast) and the standard case of twelve ounce cans. I decided to play it safe and buy the twenty ounce bottle because I did not want to commit to a dozen cans on the chance they taste like crap.

Dr Pepper is no stranger to different varieties of its flavor. I particularly was a big fan of their Dr Pepper Berries & Cream which was short lived in stores. I have been looking for this Dr Pepper Ten for some time and couldn’t believe they were here in front of me. Since writing this piece, they seem to be widely available now. My assumption is they are preparing for a nationwide rollout.

Just to let you know, the TEN refers to the ten calories per serving the doctor has. The weird thing is the ad campaign is marketing itself as a diet soda for men. I’m not sure if it is manlier to drink a diet soda that has ten calories versus none. I’m also not sure how they came up with ten calories being the threshold for a man’s drink versus eight or eleven calories. Honestly, a man’s drink is a tall glass of cheap scotch.

I am pretty certain if I went to my neighborhood biker bar and ordered a martini straight up with two black olives, holding a Dr Pepper Ten is not going to save me from a beat-down. Also do I think a woman drinking a Dr Pepper Ten is any less feminine because it’s supposedly for men? Nope, especially if she is wearing flirty black thin-rimmed eyeglasses.

Regardless of the stupid marketing, it’s all about the taste. The almost boiling weather couldn’t stop the condensation running from the bottle around my fingers. I twisted the cap and heard that satisfying pffffsssssttttttttttttt!

“Oh yeah,” I thought to myself and that was the last of my happiness.

The more appropriate name for Dr Pepper Ten is Dr Pepper Two. Read on and I will explain because like most underwhelming sequels (Ghostbusters II anyone?), this Dr Pepper rates a two. I give it two points: one for effort and another because it is not hydrochloric acid.

Like some beers, I think soda always tastes better in a pre-chilled glass and so I poured a generous amount. The bouquet (yeah I said bouquet) did not have that unique hint of a “nutmegish” scent that Dr Pepper normally has. In fact, it had no scent.

I took a sip and was instantly depressed. There was very little taste of the famous doctor, in fact there was very little taste. I did appreciate the lack of unpleasant sweet syrup that coats your teeth some diet sodas have. However, this is canceled out by the fact there was little flavor.

In fact, it tasted close to plain seltzer which made me pine for that heavy sweetness. Actually, I wouldn’t care if it tasted like prune juice (as it is rumored Dr Pepper is made from) as my taste buds wanted to grasp on to something. It claims there are Ten BOLD tasting calories but it is no bolder than a grey argyle sweater vest.

A clean finish for sure, which many sodas do not have, but what does it matter when there is no taste? I haven’t been this disappointed since Fox unforgivably cancelled the show “Drive” with geek approved actor Nathan Fillion. Speaking of amped manliness, I keep hoping he will team up with Bruce Campbell.

You know, if there are ten calories…it has got to be from eating the cap and bottle. Dr Pepper Ten is obviously for boring men (or men with way too sensitive taste buds). It hasn’t affected me since I still shop at Banana Republic, listen to New Order and have different colognes for night or day.

Furthermore, Dr Pepper Ten states proudly “It’s not for women.” Women aren’t missing much because a poor tasting product will fail regardless of which gender they are aiming for. If Dr Pepper Ten is for men, I’ll take a “girly” Diet Dr Pepper instead. Or a scotch.

(Nutrition Facts – 8 ounces – 10 calories, 0 grams of fat, 100 milligrams of sodium, 5 grams of carbs, 4 grams of sugars, and 0 grams of protein.)

Item: Dr Pepper Ten
Price: $1.59
Size: 20 ounces
Purchased at: My neighborhood Publix that sells those forsaken cinnamon brooms.
Rating: 2 out of 10
Pros: No sticky film on your teeth. Nathan Fillion. Pleasant clean finish. Women in glasses, especially with their hair pulled back. Did I mention it doesn’t leave a sticky film on your “teeths”? Banana Republic circa 2006. It is only ten calories.
Cons: No Dr Pepper taste. No sweet taste. No taste. Networks canceling shows too early thus giving us viewer blue balls. Ad campaign is moronic. Not one of the ten calories are bold. CINNAMON BROOMS. Men, Women…either way it’s not good for either.

16 thoughts to “REVIEW: Dr Pepper Ten”

  1. Diet Dr. Pepper is great and I don’t get the whole it isn’t manly to drink diet sodas cause my brother drinks diet dr. pepper and he will kick your ass.

  2. I am fueled almost exclusively by Dr. Pepper. So, of course I tried this stuff. Thought it was terrible. It has very little taste, true, but most of the flavor I tasted was bad diet soda aspartame aftertaste.
    This was their attempt at Coke Zero, but it fails in so many ways.

  3. I have a coupon for a free 2 liter, so I will try it anyways. But these lower and lower calorie softdrinks are just ridiculous. I guess people will always want flavor without “fat.” But if you are going to get a soda just get the real thing and drink moderately instead of a 44 ounce cup.

  4. I think it’s interesting that regular soda drinkers think it’s too diet tasting, because I’m a diet soda drinker and thought that it tasted too regular! I thought it was too sweet and syrupy. But regardless, I have to agree that it is not good. I reluctantly finished half a can and then gave up.

  5. Minty Sprite is soooo weird tasting. The only time I’ve seen it was in China 7 years ago…best of luck on your quest to find some!

  6. I’m a diet soda drinker, and I have to say that it was nasty. I would rather drink the diet version instead!

  7. If Dr. Pepper 10 is’nt for women why dont it say so on the box or on the packs or on the can and botted. what if a women does drink it.

  8. I just got it here is Maryland and I have to say it is awesome. I don’t drink regular soda anymore, but drink a bevy of diet etc. It’s a bit sweet, I agree, but I like the sweetness.
    It has a bit of that pepper bite I like in the original.
    It has a ton more flavor than stuff in the diet category.

    I hope most comments here don’t represent most people, because I want it to stick around!

    Marketing is marketing. I think the whole man thing was funny.

    Minty Sprite? That sounds like carbonated Scope.


    Mike in Maryland

  9. As a manly man, I found that “10” has the same bland taste as the Publix brand diet cola….with added hints of cherry. I’ll stick with the regular diet Dr. P…or anything that is on sale.
    BTW…..please stay away from Publix cinnamon buns or their fried chicken. I need to make sure there is an ample supply of both and I don’t need anyone else running in at 930 and getting the last box.

  10. I inhale cases of Diet Coke and Diet Dr. Pepper, and I thought it tasted much closer to the real Dr. Pepper, but it’s probably because all the diet soda has warped my taste buds. I think it’s pretty good, but I almost prefer Diet Dr. Pepper now because I’m used to it…

  11. This blog entry and all the comments are garbage.
    Dr Pepper Ten is the best soft drink on the market.
    It tastes better than regular Dr Pepper.
    It tastes amazing.
    I’m gonna go grab one out of my mini-fridge, where no other sodas are found.

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