Product Type: Coca-Cola Soft Drink
Newest Review: ... no added sugar but it doesn't taste that much different from the original. I would describe the taste of Dr. Pepper Zero as quite tangy and... more
A Very Pleasant Surprise!
Dr Pepper Zero
Member Name: blackrose_
Dr Pepper Zero
Advantages: All the taste but low calorie/sugar, right amount of fizz, long shelf life
Disadvantages: "pop" is never realistically going to be a "healthy" choice! Not the cheapest fizzy drink available.
When summer is here (which apparently it is, regardless of what the weather is doing!), I always seem to find myself drawn to fizzy drinks. In general I am not really much of a "pop" drinker, preferring fruit juice or a hot drink, but for some reason during the summer months my body just seems to crave a bit of fizz!
Having said that, I am, like most people, very well aware that many such drinks do contain gobsmackingly large amounts of sugar, with a calorie count to match. On the other hand, I have often found that "sugar free" or "zero" varieties of drinks are somewhat of a disappointment when compared to their full sugar siblings, so it was after some considerable umming and ahhing in the supermarket, plus noting that these particular drinks were on offer in my local Tescos (2 packs of selected 300ml 6 can packs of pop for a fiver), that I decided to take the plunge and give these a try.
This drink comes packaged in a few different formats, from "single-serve" bottles, to multipacks of cans or even larger bottles. I have only so far tried the 330ml can version, so it is this size and packaging my review is based on.
One of my pet hates is warm fizzy drinks, so I made sure my cans were thoroughly chilled before trying this, and even popped a few ice cubes into the glass for good measure! When I first opened the can, I was pleasantly surprised to notice that unlike some sugar free drinks, this variety of Dr Pepper did not smell very different to its full-sugar counterpart. Some "diet" soft drinks have an almost chemical smell to me, which can be a little bit off-putting, but I honestly don't think I would've realised this was a diet version of a drink if someone had served it to me in a glass and not mentioned it. The colour of the drink (more or less the same as a cola, a kind of caramel brown), also looked the same to me as a regular Dr Pepper.
This theme of "I can't believe its not sugared"(!) continued when I tasted the drink. For those that haven't tried Dr Pepper before, it is quite a tricky flavour to describe; a pleasant mix of fruit and something almost like caramel. My dad says that it tastes like "sasparilla from the soda fountain used to", but having never tried sasparilla I am not entirely sure how right he is about this! I was almost astounded to find that to me at least, there was very little difference in taste between this drink and a "normal" Dr Pepper; perhaps this tasted a little bit "lighter" as if I had let an ice cube or two melt in my glass of regular drink before drinking it, but it was not in any way watery or disappointing.
I found there was just the right amount of "fizz" for me, enough to make your tongue tingle but not so many bubbles that they irritate the back of your throat and induce a coughing fit! Being canned, I didn't really have to worry about the drink going flat during storage. This was the main reason I chose to purchase the can format rather than a large bottle; as I only drink fizzy drinks occasionally, I tend to find a big bottle will go flat before I finish it and I end up wasting it, so whilst it is a cheaper option it is a bit of a false economy for me personally as I end up throwing the flat half of a big bottle away! The cans have a shelf life of approximately 7 months, so even an occasional pop drinker such as myself should be able to polish off 6 cans in that time!
As I mentioned, one of the main factors for me when purchasing this was its claim to be sugar free and hence low calorie. I can't say that I inspected the label in the shop other than to note the "zero" branding, but did have a gander whilst I was drinking my can (chilled from the fridge), and noted that one 330ml can contains 1.5Kcalories, alongside 0 sugar, fat and salt. Whilst I am not for a minute going to suggest that this means it is a healthy drink, it did make me feel a little better about choosing pop than I would've had I been drinking the "regular" version.
Overall I was very pleasantly surprised by this product. It has none of the chemical taste or smell which I had previously come to associate with "light" or "diet" versions of soft drinks, totally delivered on flavour and fizz, and was a lovely small treat for myself. I would definitely recommend it to others as a choice of pop, and will almost definitely be purchasing this again. I will admit it is a bit on the pricey side compared to some shop brand fizzy drinks, but having said that I honestly think it is worth every penny as it delivers on everything I might want from a fizzy drink!
Summary: A fantastic drink for an occasional "less guilt inducing" treat!