Tuesday, November 29, 2011


I just wanted to briefly hop on here and post a quick update about the state of the site for the next couple of weeks. As those of you who follow me on Twitter may have already seen, I am graduating in two weeks with my bachelor's in mechanical engineering. Needless to say, I am going to be incredibly busy over the next fourteen days. I have an unbelievable amount of work to do this week, and slowing down for even an hour to write this week's reviews may prove to be fatal to my grades.

That being said, I will not be posting reviews this week. I would like to say that I will be back up and running by next week, but I will be right in the middle of final exams, and I don't want to make any promises. So, I am hoping to be under way again next week, but if my schedule proves to be more demanding than I expect (which is usually the case in engineering), I will definitely be back the week after that.

Thank you again for your patience as I finish up my degree. I will be back in my original form and posting on a regular schedule again very soon.

Until then, have a wonderful week.

- Hayden.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Sam Adams Winter Lager

As I have said before, Sam Adams is probably one of my favorite American Breweries. Their beers are consistently memorable and flavorful, and it is very rare that I find a Sam Adams brew that I don't like. The Winter Lager is no exception to this rule, and I think that is actually one of the better lagers that I've had recently.

In general, lagers are not my favorite kind of beer. I do enjoy a good lager from time to time, and there are always exceptions to every self-established rule of personal taste, but I usually prefer stronger ales and stouts to the somewhat light nature of most lagers. That being said, Sam Adams Winter Lager is an excellent dark lager with some very nice seasonal tastes mixed into the brew. The lager is spiced with orange zest, cinnamon, and ginger, lending the drink a flavor very much reminiscent of cold weather and the winter holiday season. Although it is somewhat on the yeasty side, I found that it had a very light and flavorful taste. The aftertaste also does not linger around very long, either, making the Winter Lager very easy to drink. To give you an indication of exactly how easy it is to drink, I have had nine of these in the past two weeks.

I also found it worth nothing that this is a beer that remains tasty as it equalizes to room temperature. I have a bad habit of drinking things fairly slowly, especially when I am with other people, so unwanted heat transfer into my beverage is an issue that I run into frequently. However, Sam Adams Winter Lager stays just as good as it begins to warm to ambient temperature, making it the perfect beer for those of us who like to truly appreciate our beverages.

And by "truly appreciate," I mean "absentmindedly take two drinks every twenty minutes while staying up all night feverishly trying to write lab reports and technical papers."

Verdict: Recommended

Purchased: Wal-Mart [Columbia, SC]
Size: 12 fl. oz. [355 mL]
Price: $8.99 [6-pack]

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dr. Pepper (Glass bottle, natural sugar)

I have never been a huge fan of Dr. Pepper. It's certainly not a bad drink, but there has just always been something about the flavor that gets tiresome pretty quickly for me. Even so, I was pretty excited when a favorite lunch time cafe of mine began carrying these old-school Dr. Peppers. 

From my observations, glass bottles have been seeing somewhat of a resurgence in popularity lately. Just a few years ago, convienience stores and gas stations that carried glass bottle sodas were few and far between. Now, it is almost difficult to find one that doesn't offer at least a few choice sodas packaged in glass. However, one soda that I have found to be conspicuously absent from all of these store shelves is Dr. Pepper. It is possible to occasionally find a Dr. Pepper in glass, but the ones that I have found so far have simply been the HFCS-sweetened formula simply repackaged into a different container. This was the first glass Dr. Pepper with natural sugar that I had ever seen, and I was definitely excited to give it a try.

I want to start off my thoughts on the drink by saying this: the drink is good. This is not a bad drink. I just don't really like Dr. Pepper. It is very similar in taste to the regular formula, but as with most other drinks containing natural sugar, this one has a drier taste than its more conventional counterpart. I do like it better than regular Dr. Pepper, but I still found myself having a hard time finishing this one. That, however, is due entirely to my personal disinclination towards the beverage. If you like Dr. Pepper, this is definitely one to try out. If you ever come across one, that is.

Verdict: Recommended

Purchased: Jasmine Cafe [Columbia, SC]
Size: 12 fl. oz. [355 mL]
Price: $1.95

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Quick Update

I just wanted to hop on here while I had the chance to do so and say that I will not be posting reviews this week. I have a ludicrous amount of school work to do this week, and I literally don't think that I am going to have the time to sit down and write them right now.  I apologize for the delay, but this is a very important week for two of our senior mechanical design courses, and I need to be able to commit myself completely to my group work.

That being said, I am hoping to implement some changes into the format and content variety of Drinkable Review within the next couple of weeks. I want to start updating more frequently during the week, and I have some ideas for adding some audio and video content to the site in addition to the regular reviews. I'm hoping to make a more in-depth video explaining Drinkable Review's new direction soon (hopefully some time this weekend), so keep checking in, or follow Drinkable Review on twitter for continued updates.

- Hayden

Friday, November 4, 2011

Pure Glass Bottle Reusable Vessel: Explorer Edition

As some of you may remember, I was sent Pure Glass Bottle's Traveler vessel about a year ago. Although my steadily increasing collection of reusable bottles has caused me to use it a bit less than I previously did, it is still one of my favorite vessels. Naturally, I was excited when Pure Glass Bottle contacted me with an opportunity to review their other, larger vessel design: the Explorer.

I mentioned the Explorer briefly in my previous review of the Traveler. Like the Traveler, the Explorer is made of 100% pure glass and coated with a non-removable, impact-resistant material that increases the strength, tactility, and safety of the glass. However, while the Traveler only holds 17 fluid ounces, the Explorer clocks in at an impressive 25 ounces. To me, this is probably the most appealing aspect of this bottle, as the previous upper limit of my reusable bottle arsenal was only 20 ounces. I drink a lot of water during the day, and I always welcome larger-volume bottles, as the constant return trips to various water fountains can grow tiresome when using smaller bottles. In contrast with the Traveler, the Explorer sports a one-piece body design, with an orifice wide enough to easily add ice cubes, flavoring powders, or other enhancers to your beverage. 

Obviously, as the capacity of a bottle increases, so does its overall size and weight, thus reducing its potential for "general-purpose" use. Typically, larger bottles tend to assume a sort of "on-the-desk" role, and are often foregone in favor of smaller bottles when ease of portability is a concern. As far as physical size is concerned, the Explorer is not all that much larger than a typical 20 oz. disposable water bottle. At its narrowest point, the bottle is not much wider than a Dasani or Aquafina bottle, although the hourglass shape does increase its overall diameter. The shape of the bottle does make the vessel a little bit top-heavy (especially when full), but it also offers a very natural and comfortable grip that feels great in the hand. 

The detractor from the Explorer's portability, however, is its weight. When full, the Explorer is exceptionally heavy for a water bottle. At the time of this writing, I did not have the means necessary to give a more exact measurement, but I can say that this is a bottle that is going to get pretty heavy after being carried around for any extended period of time. The folks at Pure seemed to have anticipated this, as the Explorer is available with two different cap designs, both seemingly focused on making the bottle easier to carry. The flat cap design pictured above comes with a simple plastic handle fixed around the neck of the bottle. I carry my bottles in the side pockets of my backpack, and I found that with a little care, the handle was not difficult to remove and set aside for potential use later. The bottle is also offered with a "sports cap" alternative that features two loops built in to the top of the cap to allow for easier transport.

The flat cap with handle design

The sports cap design

Both of these designs are functional, and do allow the bottle to be carried more easily in a "hanging" position, rather than always occupying the entire hand, but I still think that the bottle is too heavy to be used realistically in active outdoor situations. The sports cap also adds a good inch of height to the bottle, and is a slightly odd shape, making it harder to fit into bags and travel cases. Overall, I think that I preferred the more simple and straightforward flat cap design for my purposes.

The Explorer (both cap designs) and Traveler bottles

I think that the weight of the Explorer really makes this bottle a better choice for home or office use, rather than a travel bottle. However, I do not say this as a bad thing, as I feel that the above average capacity and wide-based design make the Explorer ideal for desk use. The Explorer is a great alternative to the unsightly Nalgene construction of most other high-volume bottles. Although it is hard to argue against the utility of one of those comically large, graduated plastic bottles when shopping for a high-capacity vessel, I am more than willing to sacrifice a few ounces for the sake of having an aesthetically pleasing bottle to sit on my desk that doesn't demand a trip to the water fountain every ten minutes. Although I would recommend Pure Glass Bottle's Traveler vessel as a better choice for an all-purpose travel bottle, the Explorer fits the bill for an attractive and sturdy "office bottle" quite well.

Verdict: Recommended

Pricing, size, and purchasing information can be found at Pure Glass Bottle's website:


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Be sure to check out the review of the Traveler vessel here.