Up All Night: The Energy Drink Taste Test

It's not that I have a death wish or am a glutton for punishment. I'd been intending to taste test energy drinks for nearly a month now, but I kept putting it off because, quite frankly, I didn't want to do it.

Then this past weekend, two people on two separate occasions asked me my thoughts on energy drink flavors. "She knows about food and wine and stuff," each person seemed to be thinking. "Perhaps she can break down the subtle nuances in Red Bull for me."

To be honest, I have no idea what they put in Red Bull to make it taste so crappy unique, but as a non-coffee drinker (I prefer tea) I understand the need for a pick-me-up beverage sans beans every now and then.

So I'm doing this. I've been to three gas station convenience stores and a Walgreens looking for different varieties of energy drinks, and while I found most shelves oddly empty, I was able to procure an assortment for my tasting pleasure.

I divided the cans and bottles I gathered into three groups: Classic, Silver Edition and Random. Very scientific. Classic constitutes the first wave of energy drinks to get popular in the early- to mid- 2000s. Silver Edition are the frequently zero-calorie, zero-sugar drinks that are offshoots of the classic drinks. Random is exactly what it sounds like.

Here goes. If you don't hear from me tomorrow, it's because my heart exploded.

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Kaitlin Steinberg