Monday, December 7, 2009

Liquid Lightning

Down from the depths of North Jersey comes a dark new drink to lift the spirits, and give the body a jolt of energy. Actually, Liquid Lightning is an old energy drink, which was smart and took its vitamins and grew up a little. The old Liquid Lightnings, I have heard tell, were not so spectacular. But today, they are big, strong, and powerful.
So I thought it would be only fitting to bring this to the gym, on a muscle workoutday, so I could be big strong and powerful too. While I know this is no Protegy or anything, I thought it might help me replenish my spirits after a hard morning.

Nutrition/Buzz:8
Really, there is no better way to completely negate any real accomplishments in the gym than falling it up with a big dose of Corn Sweetener, Preservatives and Yellow #5 and 6, except for fitting donuts on the barbell poles or using beer glasses for arm curls. While the 90mg of calories is less than average for energy drinks, I am looking forward to trying out their diet version.

It also has a "vitamin complex", which is new and different for them. While there is enough vitamin B in here to stun a small yak, I am not sure if just adding some vitamin C counts as a real vitamin formula.Now I have seen vitamin energy drinks where the vitamin listis akin to taking a 1-a-Day- a few even have tungsten. I was hoping for more nutrients than just B and C.

Energy ingredients are a different matter. There is a big dose of 200mg of caffeine in this 16oz can. along with a proprietary blend of glucurolactone, taurine, ribose,inositol, ginseng anf potassium citrate. The addition of ribose is quite interesting, and the whole potion turns into something really amazing. I felt quite a rush - even after the gym. While it might not be as healthy as they touted, it certainly did the trick - and for a while too. I had another one to fight the afternoon slump - and it gave me the alertness and energy I needed all the way through dinner time.

Taste:6
If this is what your product tasted when you revamped it,I am a little afraid of what it tasted like before you changed it up. No one can deny that this does NOT taste like a Red Bull Clone. but I think they all could use a pay cut.
I tried this drink ice cold and it still did not taste good. Warm was even worse. I know taste is subjective, and others have enjoyed this berry flavor, but it tasted like there was not just enough care put into the flavor profile to hide all the nutrients inside.
While I would not choose this one because of its flavor, it is not a horrible drink either. At least it is an original taste. I would definitely choose this over Red Bulls and Monsters, but I would just be ready to pucker a bit after.

Packaging:5
I was surprised that this was the best design they could come up with after a redesign. I had two real problems with the design of the can. Firstly, there are unnecessary elements on the can, cluttering up the design, like a big O on top of their Liquid Lightning logo, making it look like there is an upside down exclamation point on the can. Unless the O is part of the logo, moving it away so it is not in competition with your logo is a good idea. Plus, get rid of the unnecessary "FRB" badge, which stands for First Real Beverage. (although it might be a code word for "Fuck Red Bull") but what it stands for does not matter. Without context, it is just more useless crap cluttering up your design.
My second issue is the printing job. I have had a couple cans sent to me, and both were printed lower quality than anything but a "vale" beverage should. I thought the cans got scratched up in the mail, but it turns out it was the lightning printed poorly against the black can. Parts of the can have unreadable writing (what is with that Made in the USA logo - was it taken off a website?) and it makes it hard to take it seriously when compared to the top drinks and their clear glossy black prints.
I like that they printed their caffeine content, but there is no double facing design, so it is harder for workers to face on shelves, and the lid is haphazardly placed, so you end up showing the nutritional contents to everyone as you drink, opposed to their logo.

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