While walking around my closest natural foods superstore, I came across a new coffee drink – made by a company who I still have a nostalgic place in my heart for. Blue Sky beverages spend a good 20 years being a hippie favorite, turning out organic, natural drinks that could only be found in Crunchy Granola markets – years before natural mega-markets like Sunflower and Whole Foods came on the scene.
Then about a dozen years ago the brand was sucked up by the great Hansen’s machine, the folks behind dozens of energy drinks and sodas, like Monster energy drinks, Hansens natural sodas and Worx energy shots, While some of the Blue Sky brand on my new Cafe Energy drink might still have a tiny bit of that old nostalgic feel – with slightly southWestern look and feel , much of my emotional ties are lost with their new coffee based energy line
This ties into the old Blue Sky line by having a southwestern mountain range painted on the can. The overall look is OK – except that for some reason they felt the need to put barely noticeable silver lightning flashes over a light tan background – and it really does not work.
The rest of the can works though. The fonts look nice and read well, the print job is decent, they double face the can and the inane paragraph all energy drinks have is not inane at all this time. The only problem is the one plaguing all drinks using the Monster Energy line of energy blends – no listing of caffeine at all. In this case, the nutrition label lists added caffeine and guarana on top of a coffee base, so who knows how much of a kick this has. The design works – the functionality is there – but the not listing of caffeine content is a real bummer
Blue Sky beverages are not really known for their coffees – and this is why. Cafe Energy is not bad, it is just weak and very middle-of-the-road. You can immediately tell that this coffee used is not good quality coffee. On top of that, the already middling coffee is being hidden by copious amounts of sugar, fake vanilla flavor and bitterness from the preservatives. While I appreciate that they kept out the baking soda many coffee energy drinks have, the Sodium Citrate they used instead give this a sourness that is not pleasant in a rich milky drink.
With all the added caffeine and taurine listed in the ingredients, I expected this to have a real punch to it. Turns out, there is only as much punch as you would find in any monster coffee drink – about 180-200mg of caffeine. I felt full of energy for a good 3 hours or so – before needing to get some real coffee to keep me going.
Ingredient-wise, you can find the same blend of stuff you will find in any Monster drink; Taurine, Ginseng, the usualy B Vitamin overdose, L-Carnitine, Inositol and Glucuronolactone. Really, this is a winning combination. There is not a blast of buzzy energy, but a nice lift that was grateful for. while it might not be the most powerful coffee energy drink I have tried, it is still a decent offering.