Product Type: Britvic Soft Drink
Newest Review: ... summer fruits squash. The 1.25 litre bottle claims to make 50 servings compared to the original which makes only 20. I have not count... more
Member Name: Dryad
Britvic Robinsons No Added Sugar Double Concentrated Squash Summer Fruit
Advantages: Good depth of flavour, only natural colouring and flavourings
Disadvantages: None that I can think of.
My mother recently gave me a big (1.75L) bottle of Robinsons Double Concentrate, Summer Fruits flavour. Normally my reaction would have been to thank her sweetly and shove it to the back of my cupboard to be thrown out a few years down the line. If there's one thing I hate in the soft beverage world it's squash. This type of drink evokes memories of allergic reactions involving itchy swollen throats, a feeling akin to drinking gravel, and warm sticky muck in yucky leaky plastic 'flask' type things on gritty summer days at the beach. However I was interested to try this because as a family we drink way too many fizzy drinks (which strangely don't set off the itchy throat and asthma). Though our fizzy quotient consists of mainly low calorie drinks it is not only the calorie content which is relevant. They are of course packed with tooth eroding acid, and all sorts of other 'not good' things. I wanted to see if we could wean our selves off at least a proportion of fizzy stuff and on to something less harmful.
The instructions on the bottle tell us to shake well and dilute one part concentrate to 9 of water. I never bother following the dilution instructions as I'm sure most people wouldn't judging by eye and taste, but I would say that the approximate proportions stated seems to be how it tastes best.
The drink contains naturally occurring sugars but it does also contain some sweeteners - Aspartame and Saccharin. The ingredient list seems to be fairly natural, for example 20% fruit juice from concentrate Apple, strawberry, raspberry and cherry, with natural colouring plus the usual stabilisers etc. The concentrate contains 19 calories per 100ml so when made up the calorie content of each drink is negligible.
On trying this I was surprised how smooth it tasted, none of that tickly wheezy throat and chest effect, so that was the first plus point for me. I think this may be because this concentrate contains only 'natural' flavourings and colourings. I was more surprised at just how little of this product you need to make a full flavoured tasty drink. It really is at least double the strength of other similar products. We tried the co-op version in the same flavour (when we ran out of the Robinsons our co-op didn't have the Robinsons) which we found insipid and was definitely not genuinely double strength and compared very poorly with the lovely Robinsons.
For taste and genuine depth of flavour the Robinsons beats any other brand of a similar fruit mix that I have tried hands down. My younger daughter loves it and now drinks it in preference to the acidic fizzy drinks she was pretty much addicted to which is a great improvement health wise. The colour when made up is a pale purply pink, rather pretty. At first I assumed because it was so pale it wouldn't taste very nice, I was totally wrong on that score. The smell is not particularly strong about on a par with other fruit drinks.
Although a large volume of liquid is contained in the bottle it is quite ergonomic in design, being short and squat rather than tall and easy to knock over. There are recesses in the plastic to make holding the heavy bottle (when full) comfortably with a good grip. The packaging is recyclable as is most plastic these days.
One thing I'm personally not keen on is the easy pour top, the opening has some kind of blue plastic disk fitted attached by a few plastic 'spokes' in the mouth, the concentrate doesn't pour out through this but between the 'spokes'. I'm not sure what this is meant to achieve, perhaps preventing too much sloshing out in one go. It does give a fairly smooth pouring action, but when pouring slowly it seems to dribble down the outside of the bottle just as much if not more as with a normal opening.
One 1.75L bottle lasts us just over two weeks, it is mainly my youngest daughter who drinks it but we all enjoy a cold glass at least once a day. We usually buy the 1.25L bottle unless the other is on offer as we don't always have the budget to cover the higher price of the larger one in an individual shopping expedition even though it is more economical to buy the larger size.
At Tesco this sells for £2.59 for 1.25L., or 1.75L on offer at £2.00 until 2nd August 2011 (normal price £3.49).
This is a very good value drink which we now buy regularly.
Summary: A pleasant full flavoured refreshing drink.