Thursday, 1 December 2011

Sodastream New Sparkling Naturals Range review

When I was a kid, I always dreamed of having a Sodastream machine. When I was grown up enough to buy my own, I worried it would be one of those gadgets that got used for a while until the novelty wore off then stashed at the back of the cupboard forever more, so I couldn't justify the cost. Then the lovely people at Sodastream sent me one to review and we've been "getting busy with the fizzy" ever since. I've just checked the date of that review (here) and it was in May 2010 so that's quite impressive. And also quite telling about our mentality here at The Madhouse that even after all that time, we still get the giggles when it "farts" !!

We were really pleased when those lovely Sodastreamers got back in touch recently and offered us samples of their new Naturals range to try out. The new cordials are made from all natural ingredients with no artificial flavours, colours or sweeteners so they're better for you.

There are six new flavours, three in the Sparkling Naturals range - Lemon & Lime, Blackcurrant & Pear (which I didn't think would go together but do !) and Pink Grapefruit - and three in the Sparkling Naturals For Kids range - Apple, Strawberry and Orange & Peach. I couldn't really understand why they'd created this divide as they are all gorgeous, fruity flavours that appeal to the grown-ups as much as the kids, but closer inspection reveals that the difference lies in the fact that the kids' flavours give 100% RDA of Vitamin C per serving.

So far so good. They taste absolutely fantastic with a lovely refreshing fruity flavour that is less syrupy sweet and tastes more natural than the usual concentrates. We've been getting through a bottle of Sodastream fizzy drink a day since they arrived as everybody wants to discover all the new flavours. Our unanimous favourite is Strawberry but the grown-ups also love the thirst-quenching Pink Grapefruit, and they are all lovely.

The only downside is that you need to use double the quantity compared to the usual Sodastream concentrates. For both, you add one capful but the cap on these bottles is much bigger so you "only" get 6 litres out of a bottle, compared to 12 litres from a normal bottle of concentrate. The price is no lower though, with a 750ml bottle costing £3.99 compared to £3.29 for 500ml of regular Sodastream concentrate.

You have to weigh up the pros and cons though. I'm willing to pay a bit extra for healthier, more natural drinks packed with vitamin C (for the kids' range), especially when you compare the price with the cost of an equal quantity of non-Sodastream fizzy drinks bought ready-made from the supermarket. And that's without taking into account the positive impact on the environment of using less plastic bottles.

An extra bonus is that when the Sparkling Naturals concentrate bottles are empty, the lids can be used as little drinking cups that are absolutely perfect for little hands.

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £3.99 for 750ml

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