Monday, December 23, 2013

Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash

Aside from being included in just about everything in the months between September in January, cranberry is a flavor that is often injected into sodas in particular for this time of year.

Last year I wrote about Canada Dry's Cranberry variety, which has been gracing autumn and winter shelves for years now. Also years old now is Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash, but is still only seasonal.

Sprite reigns king of the lemon lime sodas in the US and has done so for a long time, but in 1999 Pepsico realized that Slice really wasn't cutting it as competition. 7 Up might be a worthy opponent, but Pepsi does not own the rights to 7 UP in the US.

And so, Pepsi created a new brand to compete on the lemon lime shelves: Sierra Mist. Ever since my first sip, I always knew it was a loser. It just was never as good as Sprite, and I'm pretty sure that its brand performance hasn't been incredible either, though I have no numbers to back that up. A few years ago, Pepsi switched the drink's formulation and called it Sierra Mist Natural.  My verdict remains the same.

Cranberry Splash must be somewhat successful, because it keeps coming out every holiday season.

The Sierra Mist flavor base, in my opinion, is one that is fairly dull and lacks vibrancy.  Despite that it uses sugar over HFCS, it tastes like a mixture of sugar syrup and citric acid.  Luckily, the cranberry makes it better.  It instantly adds a tartness that makes your taste buds stand at attention.  The tartness evolves into an easily detectable cranberry flavor that's quite enjoyable.  But too soon it dissipates into the dead Sierra Mist aftertaste.

It's better than the normal stuff, but not by much.  And, like Canada Dry Cranberry, it looks beautiful in the glass, and tastes better with gin.

Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash:- Good
Original Sierra Mist(for comparison):- Passable

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