There is always a jar of cranberry sauce in the Madhouse fridge to go with the Sunday roast, but I must admit, we don't buy cranberry juice very often because the Madhouse kids find the taste too tart. I was therefore keen to see what they would think of the trio of Ocean Spray drinks that we received to review, including the newest product to join their range - Sparkling Cranberry.
That was the one that we started off with, in fact. The Sparkling Cranberry, which everybody loved (except for Juliette who doesn't like fizzy drinks), is a refreshing, lightly sparkling drink, made with spring water and real berry juice. It also contains sweeteners.
I was pleasantly surprised by the calorie count - 4 calories per 200ml - so I'd definitely drink this instead of my usual Diet Coke. It has a natural, fruity flavour that appealed to both the grown ups and the kids. It's also available in Sparkling Cranberry Raspberry so I'll be looking out for that too. (RRP 75p for 1 litre.)
We also got to try two of Ocean Spray's Juice Blends - Cranberry Raspberry and Blueberry. The Cranberry Raspberry was a great hit - the sweetness of the raspberries tones down the tartness of the raspberries, creating a clean, crisp juice that even the kids loved. Looking at the list of ingredients, it also contains apple juice and sugar, which undoubtedly help create a mellower, more kid-friendly flavour. The Blueberry one was also a unanimous hit, although I was put off by the first sniff because it seemed to have an artificial smell like sweets rather than fruit. I did like the flavour though. A 250ml glass has all of your recommended daily amount of vitamin C, which is a huge bonus, and contains no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.
They are lovely straight from the carton/bottle, especially if you've chilled them beforehand, but Ocean Spray also suggested that we try a delicious cocktail or two, with or without alcohol, created by Bartender of the Year 2015, Mr Lyan.
Ocean Spray® Cosmo Paloma
50ml Ocean Spray® Sparkling Cranberry
30ml Blanco tequila
2 strips of celery
10ml apricot brandy
25ml pink grapefruit juice
Dash of sugar syrup
Rim a hi-ball glass with sea salt and fill with ice. Put all the ingredients (except for the Ocean Spray® Sparkling cranberry) into the glass and stir. Top with the Ocean Spray® Sparkling Cranberry and garnish with the mint sprig.
Ocean Spray® Raspberry Mule-less
100ml Ocean Spray® Cranberry & Raspberry juice drink
1 drop almond essence
75ml ginger ale
Stem of rosemary
Fill a wine glass with ice; add the almond essence, Ocean Spray® Cranberry & Raspberry juice drink and ginger ale. Garnish with the stem of rosemary.
Ocean Spray® Bulletproof Blueberry
100ml Ocean Spray® Blueberry Juice Drink
1 coin fresh turmeric (or substitute with fresh ginger)
5ml cider vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1 whole egg
(Optional 2 dashes angostura bitters)
Blend all the ingredients, then pour over ice and garnish with the mint sprig.
Disclosure : We received the products in order to write an honest review.