Sunday, November 23, 2008

Jolt Wild Grape

Jolt is a unique energy drink company. They were one of the first to dream up the idea of highly-caffeinated soda and make it mainstream with their slogan, "All the sugar, twice the caffeine." Well, some odd years later, we have Jolt, now in a handful of flavors in addition to cola, with the unique 24oz "battery" cans, featuring the special resealable caps. Well, here's another pristine example of Jolt's innovation with the revolutionary resealable 16oz cans nobody's done before. What exactly does a resealable can mean for energy junkies? Well, it means the choice of saving your 16oz-er for later, for those who can't restraint themselves or those who don't care for a whole can. What it also means is a special treat for the ears while opening the can; you achieve that wonderful POP Jolts are notorious for. It's a win-win situation until you think about the price; I think I payed a bit too much for this (in excess of 3 dollars), but I knew I had to have it. I trust, however, that as this grows in popularity, the price will begin to drop.

I resurrected Spawn of Uamenti just for this very special occasion and I opened the lid hoping for the pop, but unfortunately there was no pop and more of a hiss and rush of air. I took a long whiff and the smell was your characteristic deep purple grape flavor, kind of like cough syrup, but more natural and with some great zing. The smell is delicious, but a little bit flat compared to the Nos Grape, in my mind. However, I find that it is quite a bit more robust. When I take a sip, I'm hoping for the same thing, but I find there's less robustness to it and it tastes a bit flat still. To describe it in greater detail, the beginning of the sip is just sweet enough and then some mild but coarse carbonation comes in and gives the drink some nice texture, which I like. What's good is that the carbonation isn't foamy and doesn't linger for long. Then, as with many drinks, the grape flavor comes in halfway through and gets stronger until oddly, it just disappears. Chan has remarked upon this, the situation where a drink suddenly loses nearly all its flavor at the end of each sip. This is a bad thing if you're trying to drink slowly, since you lose the flavor and crave more soon after every sip. I think what Jolt was trying to encourage was a rapid intake, and now that I think about it, it's quite a genius idea, to make the flavor disappear after every sip. As I've explained, you'll crave the drink more after every sip, which does two things. For one, it makes you take more frequent sips so that you're likely to run out sooner and buy more, but what may be less obvious is that this means a greater percieved kick. Because you'll be drinking faster, this means the energy ingredients are taken in faster and you have a greater boost. I'm confident Jolt knew what they were doing when they designed this and all of their drinks and I find it brilliant. Already, by the end of this paragraph, I'm completely finished with the can. What I've observed is that this is a more mild, subtle grape flavor in comparison to grape soda and the Nos Grape, a drink I quite enjoyed for it strength. This Jolt seems to be lacking strength but is still good in general. Average soda drinkers shouldn't be disappointed while, someone like me, who is used to a quality drink like Monster might find this lacking. I'm optimistic about the kick, however.

Well, after about 8 hours, I have a mixed opinon about the drink. For a short period of about two or three hours, Jolt does provide a sizeable jolt, as you would expect. But what troubled me was, about 8 hours later, long after the slow, steady kick following the caffeine boost, my energy levels plummeted, leaving me tired and apathetic. I wasn't at all expecting a crash so severe from a Jolt, but I suppose the bigger they are, the harder they fall.

Anyway, for ingredients, Jolt has: Carbonated Water, HFCS, Taurine, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Caffeine, Sodium Benzoate, Red #40, Guarana Seed Extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Blue #1, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin.

The drink also has 210 Calories total and 26g of sugar per serving, 52g per can.

Taste: 8.4 - A quality grape you can expect from Jolt, however, a bit flat
Kick: 6 - A respectable caffeine kick, but with a ghastly crash
Overall: 7.8 - Rather drink one casually

Reviewed by: Jeff

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Jeffery "Jeff," Chandler "Chan"