I spend a number of summers hooked on Jamba Juice – in particular the protein strawberry with a shot of energy. I must have budgeted around 100 bucks a month to my Jamba habit – enough so that I got a specialty card and Jamba mug to make the .10 cents you save on drinks actually worth something.
Times and budgets have passed, but I still fondly remember my craving for some of the most delicious and healthy liquid lunch you can buy. That was why I was so excited when one of my friends from work dragged me down to their store for free samples of their newest creation, Jamba Juice canned energy drinks, made in a joint effort with the Behemoth Evil Corporation of Nestle. It is good to grow up with morals, and my 12 year old son does not allow Nestle into the house (Google Nestle and Baby Formula if you don’t know why your household should also be morally opposed to Nestle), so I had to sneak both of these cans upstairs to Bertha, my energy drink fridge until later.
I am not really sold on this package – it reminds me a bit too much of a kids juice drink. For packing the 80mg of caffeine, I would expect something a little less gooney. The big goofy fruit on the front wrapped around the Starburst really sells the fruit and not really the energy. Even the printed flavor and name of the drink is hidden under the massiveness of the fruit. Really, for something put out with the money of Nestle, I would hope for a better entry to the field than this. The white on light green is a bad choice for readability and the overall layout could use some more work.
Functionally, the can is decent enough. It is double faced although barely readable, and it lists the caffeine content, which I like. The info they have is decent enough, but they really should create a do-over for this design.
Obviously, the best thing about Jamba Juice energy drinks are the fantastic juicy flavor of both drinks. The Apple Juice tastes like delicious sweet apples, and the Strawberry Babana tastes like Apple Strawberry Banana. Jamba uses real fruit juice to give them the flavor – and it has it in abundance. I was even surprised to find Stevia in here – it just tasted too naturally sweet from the fruit for me to taste the stevia bitterness I can usually detect in drinks. Nestle and Jamba Juice did very right with both of these flavors, making something that everyone can agree on as delicious and maybe even (gasp) healthy!
Be warned though, it is easy to make these drinks taste bad. Leave them out in the sun or let the ingredients sit still for a while and you are in for one nasty surprise. The package says Serve Chilled – and they are not kidding. It seems Jamba drinks settle in the heat and they turn gross.
Yes, these contain 80mg of caffeine, just the same amount you can find in similarly sized Red Bulls or Monsters. However, The buzz was just nowhere to be found in this. I had to drink both of my samples to get any sort of energy – and that only lasted about 2ish hour before drowsy set in.
Jambas canned are like Jambas in the store – not short on calories, but made of only good stuff. They contain no artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors, and Stevia to sweeten things up. Yes, they contain 90 calories, but that is about on par for Juice of any sort.