I don’t smoke, I rarely drink, and I can avoid dessert most days, but a cold (or even warm) soda is always welcome. I almost never have coffee, so sodas often provide my only caffeine kick. Despite the danger of high calorie liquids, sodas are one of my guiltiest pleasures.
Of all the sodas, Mountain Dew is one of the more in-your-face drinks you can buy. Its thick with High Fructose Corn Syrup, saturated with a ton of sugar and calories, and only comes in hypnotic colors like radioactive green. Until now; until Mountain Dew Dewshine.
It’s a dumb name, but the packaging is charming. It hearkens back to the good ole days when Mountain Dew wasn’t some rad X-Games sponsor, but a not at all subtle reference to moonshine. When pitted between ’90s levels of x-treme or a moonshine your kids can drink, I’d rather have intoxicated preschoolers! At least the box and the bottle have the courtesy to tell you that this is not an alcoholic beverage (though I wish PepsiCo and Coke would start making premixed ‘rum and ‘s).
As soon as I read the announcement for Dewshine, I knew I had to try it. For starters, I love Mountain Dew in almost all of its forms. It’s the perfect blend of bite and fizz, plus it also reminds me of Halo LAN parties when I was a kid. I’ve had it with real sugar before: Mountain Dew Throwback is a really good variant. However, unlike Pepsi Throwback or a Mexican Coke, I still prefer the mouth-feel of corn syrup in my Mountain Dew.
I have been wanting a soda flavor I am familiar with sans the artificial coloring for the longest time. I missed out on the Crystal Pepsi phase, but in an era where we are all a lot more aware and wary of the added chemicals we consume, I say why have those that offer no real value? As much as Mountain Dew identifies with being Toxie-levels of green, I just want to drink it, not stare at it. It’s even more bizarre when you consider energy drinks, which are all to my knowledge exclusive to cans and never come in glass or plastic bottles. I love my Orange Mountain Dew Kickstarts, but I had to spill one to realize they too had a cyberpunk bar’s neon glow about them.
In a perfect world, I’d have a mid-calorie soda ala Pepsi Next, Pepsi True, or Coke Life that didn’t feel the need to be artificially colored or only come in pretentious, tiny cans. Mountain Dew Dewshine has made me rethink that perfect world altogether.
First, it isn’t bad. It’s very similar to a Mountain Dew Throwback, only it lacks the same kick of a regular Mountain Dew. In a lot of ways, it reminds me of a knock-off Sprite. It has the same boring, sort of lemon, sort of lime flavor. Some of you may love Sprite, but it’s a soda I rarely want. I certainly don’t want a Mountain Dew equivalent to it that costs a lot more to get a lot less.
As much as I don’t hate it, Mountain Dew Dewshine has left me severely disappointed. Perhaps the artificial coloring adds more flavor than I assumed, the look changes my perception of the taste, or Dewshine is more than just Mountain Dew without HFCS and coloring. I’ll assume the latter, but that leaves me thinking this was a wasted opportunity to make sodas a little more appealing.