Coffee and carbonation seems like it would be a fantastic product mash-up idea (much like chocolate & bubble gum or coffee & beer). I had seen Diet Power Bean Sparkling Coffee at several of the Grocery Outlets in our area (perhaps that should have been a warning sign) and figured I would end up trying it anyway. Since it was so cheap (99 cents for a 4 pack), I picked some up a couple months ago.
Other companies, such as Pepsi & Coca-Cola, have experimented with adding coffee flavor to their fizzy beverages with less than stellar results (Remember Pepsi Kona & Coca-Cola BlaK?) I tried the latter when it initially debuted, but I wasn’t impressed with the flavor or the price (I’m know gonna get flak for dissin’ on the BlaK). Keep in mind, those were cola + coffee drinks and this is a “sparkling coffee beverage”.
As with many international products I’ve reviewed, sometimes it’s difficult to find information online. Unfortunately, Power Bean’s maker Gio International’s website is currently under construction so I had to scrape the Google cached version to gather some more info about the product:
“A unique blend of Italian Iced coffee, with a light effervescence. This unique sparkling coffee has double the caffeine for a light refreshing lift. Perfect for the connoisseur of both coffee and soda, Power Bean contains no dairy products and is so delicious, it’s certain to convert cola drinkers to Bean drinkers around the world” [emphasis theirs, not mine]
Even though I consider myself more of a “soda connoisseur”, who wouldn’t be entranced to try this product with a description like this?
Sadly, the best way I can describe this drink would be something akin to a weak Starbucks drip combined with flat club soda with some Splenda thrown in for good measure. I don’t know if it was just our batch, but the drink seemed to lack any sort of carbonation, even right out of the can. Truth be told, if I want something caffeinated, sweet and fizzy, I’m just gonna grab a run of the mill energy drink.
I’ll leave you with Gio International’s promotional video for their sparkling coffee drinks, featuring stock images like “coffee”, “Europe” and “random graphs”.