Mike Literman (1691 reviews)

Mike loves new drinks. He's drank some gross stuff in his day, and this blog is making him drink even more against his will. That being said, he wouldn't trade it in for the world. He loves new beverages and is always, and always will be, on a quest for something new.

Diabolo French Soda Tangerine Pomegranate

Diabolo French Soda Tangerine Pomegranate

Well, la-di-da, Mr. Frenchman. French soda. What a great name for something that just pop as far as I'm concerned. Added to the fact that erythritol is in it which makes it totally more American, don't expect something exotic. This is not escargot. This is pop and I will review it as such.

Tangerine pomegranate. It's a nice, lighter flavor. Maybe that's what makes it "French" is that it's not a million grams of sugar and syrup. I'm not giving it to them. I'm not holding an embargo on France, but I'm not accepting that this is anything different that a lightly flavored pop. It's good. Ol' fashioned American pop can come across as heavy and too sweet. This is absolutely not that and I don't miss the "extra" or "bonus" flavor at all. This would be a nice transition between, say "American pop" and something like a seltzer or even a Dry pop as that is basically "almost soda."

A car hole.

Website
http://www.drinkdiabolo.com
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop, Sparkling
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on January 7th, 2016
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Doppelganger Sparkling Bitters Classic Aromatic

Doppelganger Sparkling Bitters Classic Aromatic

As if seltzer isn't "for adults" enough, here is one that tastes like you’re eating an orange you dropped in the woods and let it sit and marinate in the bark of a thousand trees. Is that bad? Not if you like the great outdoors. That goes for the place or the movie in no particular. It's good. It's sparkling and at the end is bitter but in the beginning, it's got a nice, orangey flavor. It does turn quickly but you've got to "man up" quickly because it's going to get tough soon; sooner than you probably thought; sooner than you probably wanted. If you wanted it to stay calm forever, you have the wrong drink because this is a drink for people with some hair on their chest. Male or female it doesn't matter this drink is indiscriminately put hair on your chest and on your knuckles. The type of person that knows how to use a saw and uses a saw regularly, that's who this is for. You know, the type of person that doesn't use conditioner but lets the dust from hay and sawdust "take care of it." Is this you? Are you this? If so, you've got a drink waiting for you at the top of a pile of gravel you have to shovel out for no particular reason which you will do with glee.

Website
http://www.sparklingbitters.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
No Sugar Added
Categories
Sparkling
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on January 5th, 2016
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Sparkling Bitters Water, Classic Aromatic, 12 oz glass-bottle (Pack of 4)

Aspen Maple Bacon Hot Chocolate

Aspen Maple Bacon Hot Chocolate

You might think this was a good idea if you're one of those dudes who makes pant tents for bacon but if you are a regular person, this is vile. Woah. This is gross. It smells like salt and smoke flavoring and "regular" hot chocolate. When you taste it, you thank your lucky stars that it doesn't taste as bad as it smells. It smells like fake bacon and tastes like fake smoke and has entirely too much salty saltiness.

This is a bad idea that went too far. Reign it in, Aspen.

Website
http://www.aspenspices.com
Country
United States
Sweetener
Sugar
Categories
Mix/Concentrate
Rating
2/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on December 17th, 2015
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Aspen Mulling Hot Chocolate Maple Bacon

Hershey's Strawberry

Hershey's Strawberry

I have not had strawberry milk since I was like fourteen. My friend Ian and I were sitting in his kitchen and drinking it and calling it "cow blood." Pretty morbid now that I think about it but we were fourteen. What did we know? Neither one of us had touched a boob. What else is there? We never drank. We didn't smoke. We just hung out all the time and played football in people's yards and hockey in people's driveways. We just hung out. We were all we knew and we were fine.

What we should have known was that this strawberry milk is complete garbage. Man. Now I know why I haven't had this stuff in like twenty years. It sucks. It tastes like candy strawberries but something about it still being milk makes me sick to my stomach. This is almost most certainly a "me" review and an opinion so don't get mad at me but I did not like this one bit. I don't really remember liking it back then which is probably why I haven't had any desire whatsoever to buy it.

Not for me. Ian, I'm telling you this now and I'm retroactively telling you this in 1994, I don't and never did like strawberry milk.

Website
http://www.hersheys.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Sugar
Categories
Milk
Rating
2/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on December 14th, 2015
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Melba's Fixins Cherries & Cream

Melba's Fixins Cherries & Cream

Melba loves that sugar, man. She adds it to everything. If the recipe called for eight ounces, she puts in ten. It's healthy. It's energy. In doing so, this is one sweet treat, dude. I shared this with people and this was too much. Way too much. It might taste like cherry and I suppose there could have been an element of "cream" in there but cherry cream soda this is not. Cherry cream soda does come at your teeth like a thousand minuscule jackhammers. I could feel my dentist getting richer as I drank this. Was it good? Eh. It wasn't her finest. It was alright. Melba, you're alright in my book but you might want to keep an eye on your fat grandkids before they get "the sugar."

Website
http://www.lestersfixins.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on December 11th, 2015
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Melba's Fixins Cherries & Cream (6 bottles)

Dark Dog Organic Energy Drink Original

Dark Dog Organic Energy Drink Original

Back to the classic taste of energy drinks where one dumb nerd just throws a package of packs of (American) Smarties into, I don't know, like a generic fruit punch. It's not terrible and it's better than "the old days" of energy drinks. Is it because it's organic? Probably not. It's probably better ingredients so, yeah, in hindsight; it probably is because it's organic. It's not terrible but it's kind of pretty standard tasting. As far as energy drinks go, this does taste "original" in the sense that it tastes like all of the other "original" energy drinks out there.

I can also say that this is better than both of the other versions of Dark Dog's stuff. Jay liked them. Good thing he reviewed them. This is good, though. I enjoyed it and I didn't get "the shakes" which I appreciate because I am trying to work and can't with "the shakes." Keep it original, Dark Dog.

Website
http://www.darkdog-organic.com/
Country
Italy
Sweetener
Organic Sugar
Categories
Energy Drink
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on December 9th, 2015
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DARK DOG ORGANIC Original Energy Drink, 12 Fl Oz (Pack of 12)

Nestle Abuelita Mexican Hot Chocolate

Nestle Abuelita Mexican Hot Chocolate

Mexican hot chocolate; one of those items on a menu that I cannot not buy. I've spent money on Mexican hot chocolate that I would be skeptical about buying an actual meal. You know the phrase, "If you have to know, you can't afford it." That does not apply for Mexican hot chocolate.

I spent around $12 on two boxes of this anticipating the spicy hotness of chili and cinnamon. I was let down. Why? This hot cocoa is chililess. Sans-chili. Unspicy. If you ordered this at an Indian restaurant and they asked you how spicy do you want this, you would say, "No spice."

Sure there is an adorable grandma on the box. I do not believe for a second that she made this for you or me. She would have made it with some zip. She would have made it the way they made it in the "old country." It's fine, though. It's got a little cinnamon and might be less chocolatey than a hot chocolate that you're used to. More milky with a cinnamon taste with a medium to light amount of chocolate. It's good. Not spicy but good.

I just realized that this whole time I made a mistake. I like "Aztec Hot Chocolate" not "Mexican Hot Chocolate." And you consider me a professional. I suck.

Website
http://www.nestleusa.com
Country
Switzerland
Sweetener
Sugar
Categories
Mix/Concentrate
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on November 30th, 2015
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Abuelita Instant Cocoa, 8-1 Oz Envelopes, 2 Pack

Dunkin' Donuts Frozen Dunkaccino

Dunkin' Donuts Frozen Dunkaccino

Quite the Indian summer we're having, isn't it. Last year we couldn't drink frozen, frosty drinks with open hoodies in November. That's for truth. We couldn't drive down the street with our windows down listening to "Indian Summer" by Go West last year. No sir. This year is the friggin' tropics compared to last year. This time last year, Buffalo got seven feet of snow in a day. Look it up if you don't believe me. This winter has been a breeze comparatively, so nice that I ordered the previously mentioned frosty drink. A frozen Dunkacchino brought to me by my hard work and Dunkin' Donuts ability to put chocolate in everything. I don't know the difference between this and a mocha. It might be milk. This tasted creamier than that of a frozen mocha. I think I'm right attributing it to the milk. It didn't taste as much like coffee as I would have liked but it certainly wasn't bad at all. It was pretty good but it was like a nice, frozen dessert than a coffee related beverage. Fault? Eh, who needs it? They know what they're making and if it should have "coffee" in quotes then so be it. It's a beautiful day outside and I'm in no position to be judgmental over petty things like "not enough" this and "not enough" that. This is fine if you just want a frozen drink that almost doesn't taste like coffee.

Website
http://www.dunkindonuts.com
Country
United States
Sweetener
Not Listed
Categories
Coffee
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on November 18th, 2015
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Jones Crushed Melon

Jones Crushed Melon

Fruity pop in my eyes usually has a place at outside hootenannies but in this case I might welcome it to my other activities because it's awesome. Seriously, it's really fruity but it's melon, man. Melon is a fruity fruit. America, you can't handle the fruitiness. You'd ruin it by putting in corn syrup or blending it with carrot juice. I'd love to give you the credit but let Canada have something. This was picked up by Editor Dan and I after an awesome night dilly-dallying around a 7-11. In two weeks, Jay and I are going back to see Tom Scharpling and Jon Wurster. Who knows what hijinks and activities will be had and what cool drinks we will uncover. It's been a while for us to go as a couple. Hopefully some bahn mi and delicious buns will be ingested.

Website
http://www.jonessoda.com
Country
Canada
Sweetener
Invert Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on November 12th, 2015
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Rockstar Roasted Mocha

Rockstar Roasted Mocha

Section one: The False Apology
Sorry (not sorry) this is the third coffee drink in a row.

Section two: The Review
Editor Dan and I went to Toronto to see Zombi, a prog/synth band from Pittsburgh that we hadn't seen in over a decade. The show didn't start until 9:30 and it was a two-ish hour drive home. It was a late night and only got later. What do you do? Coffee, right? That's the right thing to do. I thought that coffee plus additional energy would do the trick, which I did since I'm alive to write this review and now sitting in a ditch upside down off the QEW.

Was it an enjoyable experiment? It was "fine." It was strangely smooth. It seems that all of the sweetened coffee drinks from the United States lost all the edge or the bitterness of coffee, lately. Maybe it's canned, sweetened coffee. It all is starting to taste like thinner, melted, coffee iced cream. I don't want that. I don't think that I expected a high quality roast since Rockstar is not a coffee company first, but this seems like they cut a lot of corners and just bought "coffee flavor." This did not taste like an energy drink which I appreciate.

It did its job and that's what's important. I suppose that it was just "OK" was secondary. Strange, but secondary.

Website
http://www.rockstar69.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Sucrose
Categories
Coffee, Energy Drink
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on November 9th, 2015
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16 Pack - Rockstar Roasted Coffee + Energy Mocha -15oz.
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