“ Beverages Type: Soft Drinks / Manufacturer: Sunsip „
With packaging which looks suspiciously like Virgin Cola, you could pick this up and probably not notice the difference. It has the red and silvers, which is a subtle ploy on their part to add more confusion to the arduous task of choosing a cola. Sunsip might sound like a cheap make and it is. At about forty pence a bottle, it undercuts Tesco's own cola and obviously comes in a darned sight cheaper than the branded Coca Cola.
I tried this tonight, a friend had been around and left half a bottle on our work surface. I cannot resist trying new colas. Usually I buy the Tesco own version, but now I actually might keep this in mind. The taste was much better than I expected. I had visions of Panda Pop, really synthetic and nasty tasting. The taste was actually very similar to the Tesco version and not far off real cola. Considering the price slash, I am impressed that they have achieved such a close match.
The first gulp impressed me with a good bout of fizz, followed by a smoother sweet cola taste, which left no sticky residue on the teeth and encouraged me to finish a pint in less than five minutes. I don't think there was as much fizz as real cola, but I prefer this, as I usually get hiccups if there is too much fizz. There is a subtle warmth and full bodiedness to the cola, not half as watery as I expected.
Would I buy this for myself? Yes I genuinely would. Okay the name is not synonymous with quality, but it is now a name that I would look to explore more from. Plus, you can get two bottle for under a pound so think of the savings! I am a convert for the moment...just need to seek some of this stuff out now.
I love cola and as of late being on holiday with my mate not only have we been watching our pennies like hawks but we haven't stopped buying the stuff because we did have a rather large amount of alcohol in her touring van to take away over New Year and beyond with us!
However running low on funds meant corners had to be cut so when we spotted this in Tesco and looked at this and the Tesco Value bottle on offer for a few pence cheaper we decided that this had to be worth a go at 39p a bottle (at the moment you can also get this in the diet version too and any 3 bottles of this brand of cola is 3 for a pound!).
2 litre see through bottle and it has a silver plastic screw on/off lid/cap to the top of it. The label around it's middle is silver and red in colour in the main and I'm told it is Sun-Sip Cola 'Great cola taste' and there are some bubbles drawn on there. Other information on the back of the bottle includes ingredients and nutritional advice being listed, I'm told how to store the product and the size is stated and I am given contact details for Sun-Sip. Nice enough bottle and it is informative enough and doesn't look too economy.
The Drink Itself:
Dark brown and rather syrupy at first taste it's fruity as most colas are though for me although at first I think it is sweet and syrupy it isn't when you swallow it. It's actually rather like carbonated water with a hint of flavouring in it and a lot of unnatural sweetness is given in there too.
It is rather bizarrely salty too and instead of quenching my thirst, leaves me with a sweetener taste in my mouth that I can't shift actually making me more thirsty than prior to drinking it!
It is sparkly opposed to overly fizzy though and once poured goes flat within minutes and that's whether it is poured alone, mixed with anything else or with ice but it does stay fresh for a good three days if securely done up and stored in the fridge.
An economy cola that really does taste economy to me and my mate. It misses the twist and spark that leading brands give in cola (in my opinion) and really doesn't impress me due to the lack of flavour when consuming it and the odd tinny after-taste it leaves behind in my mouth and throat!
Nutritional Information Per 250ml Serving:
Energy: 19.9 Kcal
of which sugars: 4.8g
of which saturates: Trace
I bought mine in Tesco!
Sunsip is one of Tesco's latest 'budget brands'. The idea of these new brands basically seems to be that they want to offer their shoppers a range of Tesco Value equivilant products, but without attaching the Tesco Value stigma to them. So they've come up with a variety of 'budget brands' and Sunsip here is one of their most recent attempts.
For 39p for a 2lt bottle of any cola you can't really grumble a lot can you? Unless of course it tastes like that foul Tesco Value stuff does! Fortunately this is actually rather an acceptable little cola though. It's got a sweet taste to it without being overly sugary, and it's a bit more thirst quenching than some of the colas I've had over the years too. It's got a good, strong fizz to it when first opened, and it has a very pleasant smell as well.
I'm also pleased to report that it mixes well with alcohol. I didn't feel that I could particularly tell that I was drinking cheap cola when it was mixed in with my favourite Morgan's Spiced. That said, I could certainly tell that I wasn't drinking my favourite brand of Coca Cola. This stuff is good, but I couldn't say it was as good as the top brands.
The big drawback to this is that it doesn't retain it's fizz for very long after opening. After about 24hrs, this starts to get a really noticeable flat edge to it that I'm not very keen on myself. I find it stays nice and fizzy for an evening of drinks with company, but come the next evening it's ready to go down the sink to be honest. Still, you can't complain at that price.
Before you start reading this, I'll be honest - this isn't actually a review of "Tesco Cola". It's a review of "Sun-Sip Cola", which is part of the "Discount Brands" range at Tesco, and my local Tesco sells this instead of the Tesco own-brand, so I can't promise you'll find this in your local Tesco (if you want to after reading this review!) Additionally it isn't listed on the Tesco site, but I know it does exist because I've got it and the receipt in front of me!
I might be completely wrong here but with the trend of Tesco moving away from own brand to "Discount Brand" for value options, this may be the new replacement for the old Tesco Cola. Then again, it may not!
The cola only comes in 2 litre bottles (at least in my local Tesco), and the packaging follows the norm of a clear bottle showing off the dark brown contents. Around the middle, as you can see in the picture, is the label, which is red and grey. As well as baring the "Sun-Sip" and "Cola" logos, a slogan at the bottom says "Great Cola taste!" and the Tesco "Discount Brands" logo is in the top corner.
The "Discount Brands" aims to provide new brands of favourite items, such as lemonade (also by Sun-Sip in my local store!), washing up liquid ('Daisy' is the Discount Brand) and pasta sauces ("Trattoria Verdi", which sounds quite posh!)
Back to the cola! At a slightly ridiculous 38p for 2 litres of Cola, I decided that it was time to save some money and plumped for it over the far more expensive Coca Cola branded cola I normally buy at £1.56 a bottle. That's a huge saving of £1.18p for every bottle!
However, it all hinged on the taste test now. While the price may have been a bargain, that doesn't mean much if it's not drinkable.
Upon pouring a glass, the first thing I noticed was the fizz. There was a lot of it, and when I finally finished pouring the cola carried on making bubbling noises for a good few minutes afterwards!
After pouring another glass (after all, who wants to leave their drink for 5 minutes to get rid of all the bubbles every time they want a glass?) I just my first sip. The first thing I noticed was bubbles, lots of bubbles. I could feel the cola fizzing in my mouth for a few seconds before I swallowed it, and while I wasn't too worried about the fizz itself, I was worried about the after effects it might have on me!
As for the taste itself - the most important part in my opinion - I was fairly pleasantly surprised. It's not extremely strong or sweet or even sickly, if anything it's quite week. The taste reminded me happily of Haribo Cola Bottles, although not quite as strong. As with most value soft drinks, there is a slight bitterness or even chemically after taste, but it isn't strong at all and disappears quickly.
After my first few measured gulps, I realised I was actually quite thirsty and polished off a couple of large glasses - probably about 600ml in total! My fears of fizz came back to haunt me a short period of time after when I felt a peculiar feeling in my stomach - slightly uncomfortable and "bubbly" is the only way I can describe it. A few minutes after this initial feeling, I could start feeling gas travelling up from my stomach and then back down. Two or three burps later the uncomfortable feeling was gone, but I wouldn't have liked to have experienced it in polite company!
Overall I must admit I'm pleasantly surprised by the Sun-Sip Cola. At 38p a litre, I was hardly expecting Coca Cola style quality, and the taste is certainly reasonable. However, it is very fizzy and the effects of that were clear to me, but I'd be interested to know if it had the same effect on everyone else or if I just have a low level of fizz-tolerance! Recommended if your on a budget, for a party where Coca Cola is too expensive (it adds up quickly when you start buying bottle) or for mixing with alcoholic drinks as you'd be less likely to drink these as quickly and thus the fizz will go away!