Saturday, March 8, 2014

Starbucks Refreshers Blueberry Acai

Yup, my eyes are not deceiving me. This is the first new energy drink I have seen on the market in Ontario since some time last year (2013). Can't believe it squeezed through the regulations....well, maybe it is easier for beverages without so much caffeine.

I got a can of this from the local Zehr's supermarket, which was having a 2 for $5 promotion. Crazy! I was at a Starbucks later and did not see it there. Nor did I see it at the gas station I stopped at later that day. I wonder why the supermarket got these out first before...well...the store that makes and sells them?

Also, before I get to the actual review, I have to say - this can does not look pretty. It was placed right next to the other Refreshers (the Strawberry and the Melon ones) and just looked ugly. It was the same basic design idea, but for some reason the execution was not as good.


I have to compliment whoever developed this drink because just from the aroma you can tell what is in this Refresher - blueberries and acai. It is very well done with a sweet blueberry note on top and a sour acai undertone.

The taste is similar but now it is more like a club sandwich of flavors. Sweet blueberry notes start you off (bread) which are then followed by acai (filling), which is then followed by a brief spurt of sweet blueberries (bread), followed by more acai in the finish (filling) and finally followed by a lingering sweet blueberry aftertaste. Yup...sandwich.

There are 20 grams of sugar and its presence does become noticeable towards the end as the sweetness starts to build up from the first sip. On the plus side, the sour notes help mask most of the sweetness following each sip. To me, it seemed like that tiny bit that didn't get masked built up.

Also, not sure what combination of flavors resulted in this, but I started getting a whiff of artificial sweetener in the aftertaste about half way through the can.


Like all other Refreshers, the Blueberry Acai one also contains only 50 mg of caffeine. This isn't much of a kick, but I love Refreshers because they taste great and I can always have one late in the day without it affecting my sleeping schedule. I would not depend on one in the morning to replace a cup of coffee or your standard 473 mL energy drink...nor would I drink 3 of these to get the same level of caffeine.

So, having said that, you know where I am heading with the energy results - this Refresher is good for a 1 hour energy bump for us caffeine addicts, which comes in within 30 minutes of consumption. Also there is no crash at the end.

Overall, the Starbucks Refreshers Blueberry Acai is a great tasting and refreshing "light" energy drink that I hope will stick around on the market for a while.

Cost - $2.50 with promotion
Taste - 9/10
Energy - 5.5/10

Overall - 14.5/20...great tasting, decent energy bump

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