Thursday, August 31, 2006

Tea Review 73 - Sol Mate Energy Beverage

Sol Mate Sparkling Yerba Mate, Original
Sol Mate Sparkling Yerba Mate, Lemon Lime
Sol Mate Beverage Group Ltd.

Tea Guy has nothing against bottled teas and tea-based soda type drinks, at least not in theory. In practice, it seems that a lot of manufacturers pushing these beverages err on the side of over sweetening. But that could just be me, since I'm not really a sweetened beverage kind of guy.

I wrote about Sol Mate a few months ago, but recently I had a chance to sample both of their flavors. The company says the product is "the world’s first organic sparkling mate energy beverage." Which kind of makes it sound like an energy drink. In reality, at least in my ever so humble opinion, it's closer to a soda, albeit a rather lightly sweetened one.

Which is a good thing, if you ask me. Both flavors have a light taste with just a little bit of sweetness. If you're looking for a strong yerba mate taste, you're likely to be disappointed. The yerba mate content here is very understated. But that's probably a good thing if the company's planning to get their product to the largest numbers of consumers possible - and I'm assuming they are.

As I was drinking Sol Mate, I couldn't thinking of Steaz, who make a similar product that's based on green tea, instead of yerba mate. Both products are quite a bit lighter and less sweet than the average soda or bottled tea and both are quite nice. Another reference point would be Kombucha Wonder Drink, who do something along the same lines, but with kombucha as the base for the drink.

In any event, both flavors of Sol Mate get the thumbs up. Give 'em a shot.

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adam said...

steaz is actually pretty great. Have you tried Adagio's bottled teas? Unsweetened yet really delicious. Their white and jasmine teas are really wonderful, especially when compared to Itoen's.

But when it comes to drinking really great alternative tea, nothing beats making your own. Some tea, some cranberry juice, and if you want some fizz with a twist, some sprite or 7up into the mix.

William I. Lengeman III said...

I have tried the Adagio bottled teas. Very good. My homemade tea this summer has been four parts of organic honeybush to one part of pretty much any flavored herbal.