Bottled water is everywhere at the moment - it's summer and it's fashionable to be healthy. The soft drinks companies aren't complaining, they've been trying to use this way of essentially printing money for years. Tap water is almost free on the scale of 500ml bottles, and if you don't have to over package, transport and do much to the 'recipe' and can get away with selling it at a decent price then you are on to a winner. Well, as long as you don't care about the impact on the environment that not just filling a reusable container from the tap represents!
This week's 'meal deal' drinks from Tesco looked like this. I won't be reviewing the smoothie this time - that's a whole different ball game!
First up we have the sparkling Ice which is interesting because it's the only one that has a flavour AND is the only one that adds Vitamin D into the mix (which is good because most people in the UK are deficient during the winter months).
In fact there are a decent few vitamins in here - not at earth shaking values mind - and the flavour is strong enough to feel worth the money. I liked the lightly carbonated touch too. I'd happily drink this in a pub without feeling like i should have gone for the full juice, or the plain water. A nice surprise.
This is another new one - and an odd one at that. It's essentially water and salts - sorry- electrolytes. This seems to be the new Isotonic which is a buzz word that cropped up a lot. Without all the sugars I'm not sure that claim would be valid, so electrolyte replacement it is!
Tastes like water that someone dipped a paintbrush in, but doesn't have too much of an aftertaste. I bet if you aren't already replete in all these chemicals (especially after a workout) that you might crave this after a few tries, but it does nothing for me really.
Next up we have the Glaceau Smart Water which gets advertised quite a bit - mainly because it's made by Coke. After their terrible failure to launch and sustain a bottled water brand in the UK this is a nice angle, both adults and children want to be smart - so how do they do it?
Well - they distil the water to take everything out (so it's not just tap water this time) and then put a few of the salts back in (enough to stop your organs from failing by drinking distilled water, but not so much as it shows up on the nutrients or calories on the bottle like the Lucozade one above). This tastes like the water it is.
Of course we have the looming spectre of Pocari Sweat, but I've talked about that enough previously - at only 22 cal per 100ml it's not really an energy drink, but it does kind of exclude itself from this race.
It's never really worth the money you pay for it, but sometimes bottled water is a necessity. Which brand you choose is really up to how much you want to spend on perceived benefit (the Lucozade and smart were about 60p due to special offers and multipacks - the Sparkling Ice was £1 but in the meal deal and Pocari Sweat imports at £5 for the big bottle).
I'll just pay for whatever is the cheapest per ml, unless I'm in the bar in which case I'll have the little designer glass bottles to wind up the beer drinkers - after all, I'm paying for the service and the seat not the drink in that case.