I had already slurped half of my Sonic Sour Patch Kids Slush Float through a straw before I started to wonder if I should be using a spoon instead, and that feeling of confusion perfectly sums up my experience with this new offering from Sonic. It can essentially be broken into three parts — the Sour Patch Kids, the slush, and the float — and they never quite work together.
The majority of this hard-to-describe dessert consists of the slush, which is watermelon-flavored and so sour that I’m glad that this isn’t a video review because the pucker it put on my face was not pretty! I was impressed with how smoothly it went down, though, appealingly liquid-y with gritty ice bits intermingled well enough to give it texture while avoiding the classic Slurpee problem of sucking out all the flavor syrup right away and then getting stranded with a plain cup of ice.
The “float” part comes from the iceberg of vanilla soft serve that sits atop the slush, but I found the name a little misleading. One of the greatest pleasures of a traditional ice cream float is the way the scoops of hard ice cream melt to combine with the soda into a new substance, milky yet flavorful and somehow more than the sum of its parts. That’s what I hoped for here, but it just didn’t happen. The rich soft serve was so intimidatingly thick that not a drop could be sucked through the straw, and even as I lingered over the treat, it showed no signs of melting into something more mixable. With the unyielding ice cream trapping the slush below, I had to do some serious digging to capture both components in the same spoonful, and when I did, there was no harmonious mingling of flavors, just a cold, shockingly tart lump.
Of course, to complement the sourness of the slush, there are the Sour Patch Kids candy pieces themselves, but you’d be forgiven for missing them. Their signature “weird little gremlin-person” shape has been traded out for a form that looks more like Fruity Pebbles and doesn’t amount to much more than a colorful garnish. These flakes pretty much all either sat on top of the ice cream or sunk to the bottom of the slush, so they were mostly only present in my first and last sips/bites. But, to give credit where credit’s due, whenever I did encounter them, they were pleasantly chewy, never frozen stiff like I’d feared.
Though it had its tasty moments, my biggest problem with the Sour Patch Kids Slush Float is that it didn’t capture the versatile flavor profile so perfectly summed up by the Sour Patch Kids slogan, “First they’re sour. Then they’re sweet”. That rapid transition from intensity to relief works brilliantly in a candy where the sour coating can be sucked off to reveal the sweetness underneath, but the slush and the ice cream here never blended well enough to pull off such a trick. I kept wishing I was separately munching Sour Patch Kids candy, slurping a slushie, or licking vanilla ice cream because, like the naughty children in the Sour Patch Kids commercials, these ingredients just did not play well together.
Purchased Price: $2.99
Rating: 5 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 520 calories, 11 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 200 milligrams of sodium, 106 grams of carbohydrates, 92 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein.