Friday, December 10, 2010

Fentimans Two-Hit Combo Review

As those of you who follow these posts may know, I had a Fentiman's Cola a few weeks ago and was absolutely astounded. It was one of the best colas that I have ever had, and I almost went to the store to buy another after I finished the first one. Well, now I wish that I had, because apparently Earth Fare is not restocking them, and I can't find them anywhere else. A few days ago, however, I went to World Market with some friends of mine and found two other varieties of Fentiman's hidden out of place on a shelf in the back. Although they did not have Cola, I was excited to try the new flavors.

Dandelion burdock

I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from this one, as I have never had dandelion or burdock, but I was pleasantly surprised. There is no mistaking the botanical basis of this beverage; it tastes like plants. But this is not really a bad thing. I was a bit taken aback at first by the strength of the flavor, but after acclimating to the taste, I really enjoyed it. The flavors mix into something similar to fennel, giving the drink a vaguely licorice-esque taste that is not overpowering. I am a fan of licorice, so I was perfectly okay with this, but those who don't favor the flavor should probably stear clear. It is silly to compare this to the cola, as they are entirely different products, but I couldn't help but catch myself wishing that I had a cola instead. By the end of this bottle, I was ready to be finished. I would buy it again, but probably not when faced with other options.

Verdict: Hesitantly recommended

Purchased: World Market [Columbia, SC]
Size: 9.3 fl. oz. (225 mL)
Price: $1.79


I hate to say it, but this is a terrible beverage. I had no idea what this was when I bought it, and had to look up Shandy when I got home. I found out that Shandy is apparently a traditional English beverage in which beer is mixed with a variety of different drinks, typically sodas. In Fentiman's case, beer is mixed with carbonated lemonade to result in a low alcohol content (less that 0.05%) soda. After looking up the details, I had my doubts about consuming the beverage, but decided to give it a chance, anyway.

In retrospect, I wish that I had just been stubborn about it and not tasted it. It's really not good at all. I like beer, and I don't really mind lemonade, but mixed together I hate both of them. I'm not even really sure how to describe the flavor. I would just leave it at "beer mixed with lemonade," but that's not even really that accurate. Aside from not tasting good, there is an oddness about the concoction. I had a smattering of physical reactions to the taste after each of the three drinks that I took, such as itching in my neck and a crawling sensation in my right arm. It is very rare that a beverage will affect me that way, and it is usually not a good sign.

I'm sure that somebody out there has to like this; it's all over the place in Europe. But I'm kind of having a hard time imagining that anybody could really find anything to like within this liquid.

Verdict: Not at all recommended

Purcahsed: World Market [Columbia, SC]
Size: 9.3 fl. oz. (225 mL)
Price: $1.79

1 comment:

  1. silly to comment on an almost two year old post, but:
    Fentiman's N/A Shandy is the best non alcoholic beverage I have ever enjoyed. Just delicious, and a natural product without any scary chemicals or weird engineered hi-syrup corn fructose stuff.
    There is nothing like a cold beer on a hot day, or so I thought - Shandy soda has that same refreshing, thirst -quenching quality, without the buzz (and calories) from alcohol.