REVIEW: Mountain Dew 2011 Game Fuel Tropical

Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical

I’m so ready to get my hardcore gaming on now that I’ve completed my thumb stretching exercises and I have a bottle of the new Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical. The 121 milligrams of caffeine in the 20-ounce bottle is enough energy to get me through a few hours of a crazy all-night shooting and carnage marathon.

Mountain Dew brought back their Game Fuel line to help promote the upcoming game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. But since it’s currently October and the game doesn’t come out until November, my shooting and carnage marathon consists of playing Angry Birds: Episode 6: Mine and Dine.

The caffeine surging through my body is making me so amped about doing things to wood, ice, and stone that only karate black belts do to demonstrate their skills. And, I’m ready to do things to pigs that only magicians can do — make them disappear in a puff of smoke.

I’m not sure how long it’s going to take for me to conquer every single level, but I imagine I’m going to need every single milligram of caffeine Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical provides because Angry Birds is a total time sink and I could easily end up playing for six hours straight and not even notice the sun went down and I skipped two meals.

But who needs meals when I have Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical to sustain me. The 290 calories in each 20-ounce bottle is roughly the same amount I can get with a Lean Cuisine meal, so it’s like a meal in a bottle. Sure, it’s what all nutritionists call “empty calories,” but if they’re so empty, why do they make me fat?

The soda’s green color is slightly darker than regular Mountain Dew and its color also makes it look like I can use it to clean my toilet, floors, and countertops, which I wouldn’t recommend, unless you love ants or are curious about what it feels like to be standing in a roach motel, if you use it as a floor cleaner.

The bottle says it has a “charge of tropical flavor,” which, before I drank it, hoped it didn’t mean lime, because that would be super silly since they currently have a lime-flavored Dew with their Taco Bell-exclusive Baja Blast and had a limited edition lime-flavored Dew called Distortion. Well, it turned out to be lime, but not as strong as the other two flavors I mentioned. Its lime flavor was so light that at times, while drinking it, I thought it kind of tasted like regular Mountain Dew. So it’s really not a “charge of tropical flavor,” it’s more like a light petting of tropical flavor.

Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical isn’t horrible, but it tastes as if not a lot of effort was put into it. If Mountain Dew put in the same amount of effort I put into completing every Angry Birds level, perhaps they would’ve come up with something better than Mountain Dew Game Fuel Tropical.

(Nutrition Facts – 20 ounces – 290 calories, 0 grams of fat, 110 milligrams of sodium, 77 grams of carbohydrates, 77 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein.)

Item: Mountain Dew 2011 Game Fuel Tropical
Price: $1.50
Size: 20 ounces
Purchased at: 7-Eleven
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Not horrible. 121 milligrams of caffeine per 20-ounce bottle. Code under the bottle cap can be used to to double XP while playing Call of Duty: MW3. My mad Angry Birds skills.
Cons: Despite its color it’s not good for cleaning floors. Tastes like not a lot of effort was put into the flavor since it tastes similar to others. Doesn’t taste like it contains “a charge of tropical flavor.” Sore thumbs from mashing buttons for hours.

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.)

Other Dr Pepper Ten reviews:
BevReview
BevNerd (video)
Random Dude Eats Random Food

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.

REVIEW: Jones Candy Corn Soda

If Native Americans knew we were going to create a disgusting candy that looks like corn and then make a carbonated beverage that tastes like said candy, they probably wouldn’t have taught the Pilgrims how to grow corn.

Candy corn is the Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt of Halloween treats because they just won’t go away, despite how much people loathe them. Actually, comparing those two no talent attention grabbers to candy corn is rather insulting to the white, orange and yellow candy that has the consistency of wax.

I wonder what’s the appeal of candy corn. I understand the reason why for those who purchase it, because it allows them to give extremely cheap candy to trick or treaters, but I don’t comprehend those who eat it. If I want eat something sweet with the word “corn” in its name, I’ll just consume kettle corn or one of the thousands of products that contain high fructose corn syrup or a chocolate-dipped corn dog.

Like a small catch while fishing, candy corn is one of those things you throw back to the place from where it came. I don’t know about the rest of you, but in my neighborhood, those who would give out candy corn on Halloween would find their front doorsteps littered with candy corn the next morning. Or if we had time, we would spell out the word “cheap ass” using the candy corn.

We did the same thing to those who handed out stacks of pennies, but by the next morning the front doors of those who passed them out were clean because the kids collecting for UNICEF would pick up the loose change.

While I may not enjoy candy corn, the Jones Candy Corn Soda might be the only candy corn product I’ll slightly tolerate, even though it’s urine-colored and doesn’t really taste like candy corn. Its flavor is extremely sweet and its initial flavor is quite off-putting, but once you get past it, it tastes like a cream soda with some spice, which I kind of liked, but it will probably turn off most people. It’s best when extremely chilled and quite nasty when slightly warm.

So if you’ve got some cash to burn and you’re looking to get something special for trick or treaters who stop buy your house this Halloween, might I suggest NOT picking up all the Jones Candy Corn Soda you can find, unless you want the short roly-poly cans thrown at your front door in the middle of the night.

(Nutrition Facts – 8 ounces – 130 calories, 0 grams of fat, 40 milligrams of sodium, 32 grams of carbohydrates, 32 grams of sugar and 0 grams of protein.)

Item: Jones Candy Corn Soda
Price: $2.99 (4-pack)
Size: 8 ounces
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 4 out of 10
Pros: Doesn’t taste like candy corn. Limited Edition. Uses cane sugar. No high fructose corn syrup. Getting good candy for Halloween.
Cons: Small cans. Urine colored. Initial flavor was off-putting. Tastes like cream soda with a bit of spice. Getting candy corn for Halloween. Getting stacks of pennies for Halloween.

REVIEW: Goya Cola Champagne

I’ll get straight to the point here: I’m what you’d call a “classy” broad. I enjoy the finer things in life, such as dining at upscale restaurants that aren’t so upscale that they don’t accept coupons; wearing designer clothing that I find irregular or on clearance; and looking at the furniture in the Crate and Barrel catalog.

So when I saw Goya’s Cola Champagne, I said to myself “Ooh la la! Now there is a soft drink for me.” Surely this was to be a superior, top of the line beverage — despite being manufactured by the same company I normally associate with black beans and adobo sauce.

After opening the bottle and letting the cola breathe for a bit, I poured myself a glass. But the ironic thing about Goya Cola Champagne is that it tastes like neither cola nor champagne, but instead like carbonated sugar water with strong notes of bubblegum and hints of orange cough syrup. Actually, I don’t know if that’s “ironic” in the actual definition of ironic sense of the word so much as the Alanis Morrissette song “Ironic” sense of the word. Really, Alanis? You know I love you girl but rain on your wedding day and a fly in your Chardonnay isn’t ironic, it’s fucking unfortunate. Learn the difference.

At any rate, even though the product didn’t taste anything like actual champagne, (not even the five dollar bottles you find on the bottom “shelf of indignity” in the sparkling wine aisle of the grocery store) it wasn’t entirely unpleasant.

It was also very Bazooka Joe-ish on the nose, which added to the bubblegum sensation I got while drinking it. And really, I’m down with other bubblegum flavored products such as bubblegum jelly beans, bubblegum ice cream and, you know, bubblegum itself; so going by those standards it wasn’t too bad. My biggest complaint was that it left my mouth tasting like bubblegum-flavored bile after drinking it. I think “refresco” must be Spanish for “bad aftertaste.”

Overall, while it wasn’t terrible, it wasn’t especially memorable either. So next time I’m in the mood for cola or champagne I’ll probably stick to my usual Coke Zero or champagne with actual alcohol in it, even if I have to resort to the shelf of indignity in the liquor store.

(Nutrition Facts – 12 ounces (1 bottle) – 200 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 60 milligrams of sodium, 47 grams of carbohydrates, 0 gram of fiber, 45 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein and 0% iron.)

Item: Goya Cola Champagne
Price: 2/$1.59
Size: 12 ounces
Purchased at: Supreme Shop ‘N Bag
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Shit that’s bubblegum-flavored. Crate and Barrel furniture. Being a classy broad.
Cons: Bad aftertaste. Rain on your wedding day. Flies in your chardonnay. Having to resort to the shelf of indignity at the liquor store.

REVIEW: Pepsi Blue Hawaii

Last summer, Pepsi in Japan introduced the very limited edition Pepsi Ice Cucumber, which sold out in less than a month and helped Japan maintain their title of Country Most Likely Not To Use Focus Groups. This summer, they gave the finger to focus groups again and released the limited-edition, Japan-only, Pepsi Blue Hawaii.

The beverage is based on the Blue Hawaii cocktail, which is made of rum, pineapple juice, blue Curacao, sweet and sour mix, and sometimes vodka. Despite living in Hawaii and being of drinking age for the past decade, I have yet to consume a Blue Hawaii, because I’m allergic to cocktail umbrellas and drinks that make me look like a drunk sorority girl ready to flash her boobs when a video camera and Joe Francis come by.

The color of the Pepsi Blue Hawaii could best be described as Smurf-like, which makes sense since the idea of the Pepsi Blue Hawaii made me feel the same way I feel about the future Smurfs movie — it’s probably going to suck, but it has a certain allure to it that tickles my smurfs. After tasting it, I have to say that the Pepsi Blue Hawaii isn’t so smurftastic, but it is just a little smurfy.

The pineapple and lemon flavor combination was really smurfing sweet and artificial, especially the pineapple. I really didn’t enjoy it at first, but just like my experience with the Pepsi Ice Cucumber, I got used to its flavor and somewhat enjoyed it. I think its fruity flavor would make it a smurftastic mixer if you want to get totally smurfed off of something blue and can get your hands on some Pepsi Blue Hawaii.

I’m not sure what the smurf is so mutha smurfing appealing to my taste buds with the Pepsi Blue Hawaii, but for some smurfing reason, companies in Japan seem to know how to make smurfing products that sound and look unsmurfy, but in the end, turn out to be kind of smurfy. So I look forward to a new mutha smurfing flavor next summer from Pepsi in Japan. My money is on Pepsi Ice Carrot or Cherry Blossom Pepsi.

(Editor’s Note: TIB would like to thank reader Fury for sending a bottle of Pepsi Blue Hawaii from Japan, along with a bunch of other goodies to review. Domo arigato gozaimasu!)

Item: Pepsi Blue Hawaii
Price: FREE (only available in Japan)
Purchased at: Received from TIB reader Fury
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Just a little smurfy. Comes in a Smurf color. After a few sips, I got used to the flavor and somewhat enjoyed it. Might make a good mixer. Using focus groups. Getting my smurfs tickled.
Cons: Pineapple and lemon flavor was smurfing sweet and artificial. Didn’t like the flavor at first. Available only in Japan. Limited edition. Drinks that make me look like a drunk sorority girl. Cocktail umbrellas.

REVIEW: Cherry Chocolate Diet Dr. Pepper

Like a young woman who does not understand why she got so excited while watching Brooke Shields in the movie “Blue Lagoon,” I am confused about my feelings towards the Cherry Chocolate Diet Dr. Pepper. Half of me thinks that this unusual tasting soda is good, but the other half of me thinks that if you drink too much of this shit it gets kind of fucking nasty.

Some of the best diet sodas I’ve poured down my gullet have been concocted by Dr. Pepper, like Berries & Cream Diet Dr. Pepper, Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper, and of course, regular Diet Dr. Pepper.

I may not truly know how I feel about this chocolatey variation, but just like any post-Ricky Martin Menudo lineup, I do know that it is not as good as any of its predecessors.

Just like the living arrangements in the TV show “Three’s Company,” the combination of cherry, chocolate, and Diet Dr. Pepper seemed like it would make for a good threesome, but as I wrote earlier, the Cherry Chocolate Diet Dr. Pepper has an unusual taste.

The chocolate flavor stands out, but it is a weird chocolate flavor that doesn’t bring back my memories of Yoo-Hoo, Chocolate Soldier, or that night with Hershey’s syrup and plastic sheets. Overall, I think it tastes like a maraschino cherry, which I enjoy and are usually found on ice cream sundaes, milkshakes, or in my mouth as I try to impress the ladies with my ability to tie its stem with my proficient tongue.

I thought it had a very sweet and syrupy taste, despite not having any sugar in it. It was a little too sweet for my liking and I couldn’t drink an entire bottle in one sitting without getting a little sick, but I liked the initial sips I took, which are the reasons why I’m torn about the Cherry Chocolate Diet Dr. Pepper. I don’t know whether I should love it, leave it, or wait until it goes away since it is a limited edition soda.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 cup – 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 40 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of carbs, 0 grams of protein, 28 milligrams of caffeine, and limited nutritional facts)

Item: Cherry Chocolate Diet Dr. Pepper
Price: 99 cents (20 ounces)
Purchased at: Walgreens
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Unusual taste. I like it in small doses. Zero calories. Zero grams of fat. Zero carbs. Threesomes.
Cons: Not a significant source of any other nutrients. Unusual chocolate flavor. Too sweet and syrupy for my tastes. Too much of it made me a little sick. Not as good as other Diet Dr. Pepper variations. Post-Ricky Martin Menudo.