Juice Plus Unexpected Guests

Fruit2day

Fruit2day

I Paid: $2.19 per 6.75-ounce bottle (prices may vary by region)

Taste: 4 stars

Marketing: 2 stars

Advertised all over television as the latest way to forcibly cram healthy food (in this case, fruit) into your mouth, Fruit2day is based on a slightly disconcerting concept: Instead of fruit juice, how about you drink a bottle of juice-suspended, minced-up fruit pieces? The bottles boast of containing “real fruit bits” and state: “Snack on real fruit bits in a splash of natural juice. You’ll see.”

The “you’ll see” is presumably there for all normal-thinking people who are mentally saying: “Fruit bits? What the hell?”

Although the minced-fruit texture takes some getting used to, the little bits of fruit do, in fact, release extra bursts of flavor as you swallow/chew your bottle of Fruit2day. Evidently they carry some nutritional value along with the texture, as each 6.75-ounce container counts for two servings of fruit as per USDA dietary guidelines.

The quality of any given flavor depends upon personal preference. Mango Peach is not entirely unlike eating a really juicy, finely minced mango: It’s sweet without being syrupy, with plenty of bright, peach kick up front. Strawberry Orange has a nice citrus edge, a sloppy texture that encourages lip-licking, and a body comprised of a lot of natural strawberry flavor. The Pineapple Banana variety is a bit more austere, with the banana playing a subtle, almost undetectable role in the overall flavor. Cherry Grape, by contrast, has wonderful red bits that deliver a strong, splashy cherry flavor.

If you can get past the chunks, you’re in for a very pleasant (if pricey) way to tackle your daily fruit. If not, you can always go back to drinking plain old juice or, God forbid, actually eating something that resembles a plant.

James Norton edits the Upper Midwestern food journal Heavy Table. He's also the coauthor of a book on Wisconsin's master cheesemakers. Follow Chowhound on Twitter, and become a fan on Facebook.

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