Red Bull Cola

Ever since I was at VCU I always noticed the Red Bull vehicles driving around campus, or their less fortunate employees hoofing it around the student commons with cases of the energy drink. It was a free can from one such over-enthusiastic Red Buller that introduced me to what I consider a putrid beverage. I think I’ve had one more can since as a test to see whether the first was a fluke. It wasn’t – it tastes as if somebody crushed up a bottle of Flintstones vitamins in some Kool-Aid and threw in a splash of club soda for carbonation.

I don’t know why, then, I paused in the 7-11 this afternoon when I saw a can of Red Bull Cola.

can of red bull cola

I suppose it was curiosity to see whether they made some “energy cola” to supplement their product line. Seeing the “natural” tag on several parts of the can made me chuckle considering the somewhat engineered flavor of their flagship beverage, so I had to glance at the ingredients. Here I was surprised to find real sugar instead of high-fructose corn syrup (like nearly every other cola in the USA) and a lack of high-wattage extracts. What, not an energy drink? So I decided it was at least worth trying a new cola.

Cracking open the can I could already smell the difference – this was definitely a cola, but not your average Pepsi or Coke product. There was a real fragrance that smelled like something mixed up fresh. Tasting the drink confirmed what my nose suspected – there were hints of citrus, licorice, and some spices on which I couldn’t put my finger – so I had to take a closer look at the ingredients. Sure enough, there were extracts of lime, licorice, vanilla, lemon juice concentrate, ginger, cinnamon, cacao, and a host of others. Heck, they even get the caffeine from coffee beans!

I don’t think I ever expected a can of cola with this complex a flavor…now I want more.

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