Monday, April 20, 2015

Mountain Dew Kickstart Hydrating Boost Review

Mountain Dew just recently added a couple of new products to their Kickstart line-up which feature coconut water as one of the main ingredients. I guess the coconut craze is still going on. Because of the coconut water, the new Kickstart drinks had their name expanded by the addition of the words "Hydrating Boost"...since you know, coconut water is supposed to hydrating.

I got a couple of each of the flavors for $1 from a WalMart near Buffalo. These are not currently sold in Canada, but I think they might make their way across the border soon. I recently started seeing the regular Mountain Dew Kickstart energy drinks for sale here, so it is only a matter of time before the slightly more "healthier" version comes over.

Strawberry Kiwi

The Strawberry Kiwi flavor comes with a pink/orange color and a very Mountain Dew sweet soda-like aroma with subtle hints of strawberries, kiwis and your standard Mountain Dew citrus twist. The taste is very similar but more watery than expected. It starts off with a light and creamy strawberry note mixed with a bit of regular Mountain Dew, which gives the flavor a citrus boost. The kiwi doesn't come until the finish, but it lingers well into the aftertaste, which is on the sweeter side thanks to the overall sweet soda-like character of Mountain Dew. The sweetness does build up over time and when you stop drinking, your mouth becomes dry and sticky.

There are no trace coconut notes from the added coconut water.

Be aware that there is an artificial sweetener flavor present all throughout and well into the aftertaste. After all, there are only 60 calories in the can and 14 grams of sugar.

Taste - 6.8/10

Pineapple Orange Mango

What surprises me about this drink is that all three of the flavors on the label are present in the aroma. The mango is definitely the dominant note in the aroma, but the pineapple is also present, providing a sweet base for the nose, while the orange gives it all a nice citrusy twist.

The taste starts off like your average Mountain Dew - high carbonation with a distinct citrus blend. After the Mountain Dew, the flavor profile opens up a little and subdued mix of mango and pineapple flavors appear. I say subdued, because unlike the aroma where the flavors felt bold, the taste lacks this boldness and appears a little watery like with the Strawberry Kiwi.

The orange comes right at the end to give the flavor a more distinct twist and lingers well into the aftertaste along with the remnants of a mild mango note. The added sweetener also appears in the aftertaste and lingers for a long time.

I found this flavor to be slightly better than the Strawberry Kiwi one, but not by much. Both have great aromas, but are on the watery side in terms of flavor.


Both cans contain only 68 mg of caffeine, which looks like less than the original Kickstart energy drinks, but it actually is the same ratio of caffeine to liquid volume (and yes, less caffeine overall, but it is a smaller package). These new Hydrating Boost energy drinks contain 355 mL of liquid which results in a 0.19 mg of caffeine/mL volume ratio. The older cans of Kickstart had 92 mg of caffeine, but the volume was 473 mL, which results in a ratio of 0.19 mg caffeine/mL...same ratio. Why am I talking about this? I don't know really.

The boost comes in pretty quickly and it is not bad at all. I felt more pepped up within 10 minutes, but not so overly energetic that I couldn't focus on mental activities. The small amount of caffeine and sugar didn't make me want to get up and run around. I think the amounts were perfect for what I was doing. I didn't even feel jittery.

Unfortunately, since there is less caffeine than comparable energy drinks, the kick lasted for about an hour and ended without a crash. On the plus side since I had a few of these, I had another can and got the same boost for another hour. However, I felt a slight crash at the end of the second one.

Energy - 6/10...not much caffeine, but very clean kick without jitters

1 comment:

  1. I'm using your review as proof that Kickstart isn't another energy drink to my family, as I'm regularly scolded for considering drinks with high caffeine. However, although this was posted last year, doesn't it make sense that the drink has a caffeine high for roughly an hour since it's meant to be a "breakfast drink"? I mean, it's called "Kickstart" for a reason, no? Other than that, very good review!